click to enlarge
Nowadays it's impossible for a musical artist to record a Christmas album without it reeking of a blatant cash grab. (Bill Nighy does a fantastic job lampooning this sad business strategy to great effect in the 2003 film “Love Actually.”) For more than a decade, veteran producer Paul O'Neill and keyboardist Jon Oliva have avoided this kind of seasonal sleaziness by mixing standards and original holiday arrangements through a prism of prog-rock theatricality and classical orchestration. Dialed up in a live setting with lasers, pyrotechnics and synchronized light displays, the performances of the group could make Santa himself reach for his lighter. Making you forget that Thanksgiving comes first, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra is scheduled to perform at the Richmond Coliseum on Friday, Nov. 19, at 8 p.m. $26-$58.