published Friday, December 16th, 2011

Symphony bringing it 'Home for the Holidays'

This year's "Home for the Holidays" pop concert will feature several special events, including two world premieres for new pieces.

George S. Clinton will again be guest conductor for his "The Santa Clause Suite," taken from the soundtrack work he did for the Tim Allen films. He will also premiere the "Deck the Halls Suite," from the Matthew Broderick and Danny DeVito film.

As an added bonus, Clinton, who was born and raised here, will lead the CSO musicians as they perform "Winter Games," a new piece written by daughter Jess Clinton, who will sing the piece.


  • What: "Home for the Holidays" presented by the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera.

  • When: 8 p.m. Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday.

  • Where: Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St.

  • Admission: $19-$79.

  • Phone: 267-8583.

  • Website:

This will be Clinton's third "Home for the Holidays" guest appearance, and it has become something he very much looks forward to.

"This is a big deal for me," he said from his studio in California. "Getting to do these two pieces of music and me getting to conduct while my daughter sings is the ultimate proud-dad moment."

The Clintons are not the only guest performers for the annual holiday performances. The CSO Chorus, the Metropolitan Bells, mezzo-soprano Rosella Ewing and the Voices of Lee also will make appearances.

Linda Friberg was the leading vote-getter in the guest-conductor fundraiser this past year, and she will conduct Leroy Anderson's "Sleigh Ride." Because the competition was so well received, organizers have decided that contestants Carolyn Thompson, Jim Catanzaro and Jeff Styles will share duties on "Skaters' Waltz."

Clinton has composed soundtracks for such films as "Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery" and its sequels, "Mortal Kombat," the second and third "The Santa Clause" movies and "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee." He has earned Grammy and Emmy nominations.

His first film project was scoring "The Corsican Brothers" for Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong.

He saw his first symphony concert at the Tivoli, and he said he tried to put the things that are meaningful to him into the "Deck the Halls Suite."

"I wrote it especially for this," he said. "I added choir and some lyrics and made it about my favorite aspects of the holidays. It is put together as a special suite for this, anticipating the things that are significant for me. I haven't heard it performed with choir before, so it will be the first time for me also."

Scoring "The Santa Clause" movies were his first Disney projects, and those too had special meaning to him, he said.

"I love doing 'The Santa Clause' [pieces] because they were my first for Disney. When I was a kid, I remember sipping a cup of cream of tomato soup and eating a grilled cheese sandwich watching 'The Wonderful World of Disney.' The fact that I was doing Christmas movies and that Christmas movies have a long life if they are successful was special.

"I'm really excited about coming back and doing this."

about Barry Courter...

Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...

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