'Sesame Street' and Santino Fontana headline at MoTab Christmas Concert

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SALT LAKE CITY — The whole gang from "Sesame Street" is in town this weekend, and they are among the headliners in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir's Christmas program.

"This is the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. This isn't like a tiny little choir. This is a big deal — like the real thing,” Elmo said.

Cookie Monster, Elmo and Abby Cadabby are just some of the "Sesame Street" stars that are making this year's Mormon Tabernacle Choir Christmas Concert.

Choir director Mack Wilberg even turned over his conductor's baton to Big Bird — giving him rave reviews.

“Big Bird did very, very well. In fact we were commenting on how great Big Bird was," Wilberg said. "I think he has had some practice before."

Santino Fontana joined the choir this year as the guest soloist.

"It is surreal to be able to talk to characters that you grew up with, they are there, I can touch them,” Fontana said.

Fontana said he is having the time of his life.

"I just like being a part of it," Fontana said. "I also like sharing the backstage with the 'Sesame Street' folks. It is just a unique experience that I will never get again."

Utah Governor Gary Herbert has also been celebrating the "Sesame Street" crew’s visit. He declared Friday, Dec. 12 as “Sesame Street Day in Utah” in conjunction with the guest appearance of the "Sesame Street" Muppets in this year’s concert.

"To see everyone smiling and clapping and celebrating together, it's wonderful,” Elmo said.

All of the tickets to the concert are gone, but there is a standby line. Even if you already have tickets, come early to beat downtown holiday traffic.

Part of the show will be on this Sunday morning during Music and the Spoken Word at 9:30 a.m. on KSL. The entire concert will be broadcast next year on PBS.

Contributing: Sara Jarman


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