- Released: August 16, 1994
- Label: RCA
- 1.A Christmas Festival: Joy to the World / Deck the Halls / Good King ... - Arthur Fiedler, Anderson
- 3.White Christmas - Arthur Fiedler, Berlin, Irving
- 4.Sleigh Ride - Arthur Fiedler, Anderson, Leroy
- 5.Winter Wonderland - Arthur Fiedler, Bernard, Felix
- 6.Parade of the Wooden Soldiers - Arthur Fiedler, Jessel
- 7.Chocolate (Spanish Dance)
- 8.Coffee (Arabian Dance)
- 9.Tea (Chinese Dance)
- 10.The Toy Trumpet - Arthur Fiedler, Scott
- 11.Trepak (Russian Dance)
- 12.Dance of the Flutes
- 13.Dream Pantomime
- 14.Mother Gigogne and the Clowns
- 15.Sleigh Ride - Arthur Fiedler, Anderson, Leroy
- 16.Waltz of the Flowers
- 17.Pas de deux
- 18.Dance of the Sugar-Plum Fairy
- 19.Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer - Arthur Fiedler, Marks, Johnny
- 20.Final Waltz
- 21.Santa Claus Is Coming to Town - Arthur Fiedler, Coots, J. Fred
Personnel: Alfred Krips (violin); Al Hirt (trumpet).
Audio Remasterer: Thomas MacCluskey.
Liner Note Author: Robert A. Simon.
Recording information: Symphony Hall, Boston, MA (05/25/1956-06/09/1964).
Arrangers: Gould; Mason .
When it originally appeared in 1959, this LP was regarded as one of the sonic gems in the RCA Victor "Living Stereo" library, a demonstration-quality stereo record that was also chock-full of supremely enjoyable music, from Leroy Anderson to Tchaikovsky. And original "Shaded Dog" label copies (referring to the early masterings/pressings, and the image of "Nipper" the dog on the label) in mint condition are still highly prized by audiophiles 50 years later. The repertory here, a mix of light orchestral holiday standards, arrangements of popular Christmas songs, and some excerpts from more ambitious classical works (especially The Nutcracker), was ideal for Arthur Fiedler and the Boston Pops, and they ran with it -- Anderson's "Sleigh Ride" is the most famous recording here, a classic that is almost as ubiquitous during the Christmas season as Bing Crosby's recording of "White Christmas." But there's a lot else to love on this album, including "A Christmas Festival," Anderson's arrangement of familiar songs and carols ("Joy to the World" etc.) as an orchestral fantasia, plus "White Christmas" and "Winter Wonderland." Some of the material may seem to go far afield, but it's all winter-themed and holds together exceptionally well. The 1994 CD reissue was expanded to just over 72 minutes, and offers exceptionally bright, crisp sound. ~ Bruce Eder