An Iowa Christmas tradition returns tomorrow when Monticello pianist Jim McDonough opens his touring series of “Holiday Grande” piano concerts. McDonough will be bringing yuletide cheer to five Iowa cities this season.
“I am joined by my 14-piece orchestra, eight singers and dancers, a full stage set,” McDonough says. “This is a fully-choreographed, fully-costumed Christmas production show around a nine-foot concert grand piano.”
McDonough and his creative team meet bi-weekly starting in May, working closely to develop the show’s concepts and themes, which all revolve around the year-end holidays.
“This is the time of year when everyone loves the same Chirstmas music and so we see all generations at this show,” McDonough says. “It’s something that has become an annual holiday event for thousands of Iowa families.”
McDonough started presenting these concerts in 2002 and to keep his fans returning every year, he changes up the entire show every season.
“The experience is new, the staging and the costumes and the material is new,” McDonough says. “I’m thankful to have a very loyal audience that comes every year and I want to give them something new.”
Proceeds from the concerts benefit Camp Courageous in Monticello. It’s a year-round therapedic camp for people of all ages with various disabilities.
The first show will be in Cedar Rapids tomorrow, followed by Davenport on Sunday, Des Moines on December 8th, Dubuque on December 14th and Cedar Falls on December 15th. Learn more at the website: www.pianofavorites.com.
By Pat Powers, KWQC, Webster City