To kick off the holiday season in Los Angeles, The Grove hosted its annual celebration, “Christmas at the Grove”, featuring a visit from Santa Claus, fireworks, and the lighting of the 100 foot-tall Christmas tree, festively adorned with 15,000 twinkling lights and 10,000 glittering ornaments.
The award-winning retail, dining and lifestyle destination transformed into a magical winter wonderland as host and performer Leslie Odom Jr. entertained more than 32,000 Angelenos with a lively show featuring an appearance from Ashley Tisdale and performances by Aloe Blacc, Tori Kelly, The Tenors and Isaac Slade of The Fray. Music for the evening was directed by Nick Rosen and his band. Produced by Mirrored Media and presented by CITI, the highly-anticipated event was enjoyed by Kate Beckinsale, Kate Mara, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Caruso Founder and CEO, Rick J. Caruso and more. The night culminated in a surprise visit from Santa Claus and a special Los Angeles snowfall.
Now in its 18th year, The Grove’s Tree Lighting brought together community members from across the city for this free celebration. The evening’s festivities were opened by Ashley Tisdale followed by a rousing rendition of the National Anthem sung by 8-year old singer and actress Malea Emma. Following opening remarks by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and Councilman David Ryu, the show kicked off with a heartfelt performance of “Cold” by Leslie Odom Jr. He dazzled the audience with other fan favorites “I’ll Be Home For Christmas” and “Go Crazy” throughout the show.
The star-studded acts continued with The Tenors taking the stage for a trio of seasonal hits including “O Holy Night,” “When We Are Together,” and “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town.” Tori Kelly followed with her gospel-pop hit “Never Alone” and a soulful rendition of “Hallelujah.” The show then continued with Aloe Blacc’s anthemic best-sellers “Wake Me Up” and “I’m the Man.” Isaac Slade of The Fray wowed attendees with his chart-toppers “How to Save a Life” and “Over My Head,” before rounding out the evening’s performances with the holiday classic “Silent Night.” A fan favorite for the night, Isaac surprised the audience by hopping off the stage to sing and interact with a group of excited children sitting up close.
The night came to a close when host, Leslie Odom Jr, and music director, Nick Rosen unwrapped an unusually large Christmas present onstage to reveal Santa Claus himself! Santa then joined our host to count down to the lighting of the massive 100 ft tree, with an impressive fireworks display happening simultaneously. The gospel choir returned to the stage to sing “Celebration” as the crowd and performers danced along.