Staff Picks:

The Polar Express

Dec. 2, 4, and 5

This Baltimore Symphony Orchestra concert does not feature the soundtrack of the 2004 “The Polar Express” movie narrated by Tom Hanks, though that was my first guess (and how cool would it have been to have Tom Hanks show up to narrate with the BSO?). Rather, it features composer Rob Kapilow’s adaptation of the children’s book into a 22-minute choral piece, featuring narration by baritone singer Robert Cantrell accompanied by the Maryland State Boychoir. Still images from the book will be projected onto the stage to capture the attention of young tykes, and there will be a traditional Christmas sing-along during the concert to engage them more. While you’re there, introduce the kids to Prokofiev and Tchaikovsky with an upbeat movement from the former’s “Lieutenant Kijé” Suite and selections from the latter’s “The Nutcracker.” Dec. 2 at 11:30 a.m., Dec. 4 at 10 a.m., Dec. 5 at 11 a.m., Joseph Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, 1212 Cathedral St., (410) 783-8000,, $6.50-$23. (Anna Walsh)

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