Happy holidays from KAMU! We hope your month is filled with family, friends, food and our great lineup of Christmas programming. There’s a little something for everyone, including spectacular music, tasty holiday meals, popular dramas, enchanting travel and even special programs for the little ones in your life.
Our top picks include:
– Dame Mary Berry’s return to PBS
– A new “Call the Midwife” Holiday Special
– Music from renowned performance colleges, including Belmont and St. Olaf’s
– The Tabernacle Choir’s popular holiday program
Around Texas: Christmas
Thursday, Dec. 22 • 7 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 27 • 5:30 p.m.
As the third season of “Around Texas with Chancellor John Sharp” wraps up, enjoy listening to Christmas music from around the Texas A&M System. The 2021 Christmas episode of “Around Texas” featured the Singing Cadets, organ music and jazz, and this year’s episode is sure to include more fantastic music.
B/CS Christmas Parade
Sunday, Dec. 18, Saturday, Dec. 24 and Sunday, Dec. 25 • 3 p.m.
Downtown Bryan Lighted Parade
Sunday, Dec. 18, Saturday, Dec. 24 and Sunday, Dec. 25 • 4 p.m.
KAMU is proud to record and broadcast two of the Brazos Valley’s Christmas parades this year. The B/CS Christmas Parade returns for the first time since 2019. It will travel down Texas Avenue between University Drive and Sulphur Springs Road in Bryan with floats, bands and candy. The Downtown Bryan Lighted Parade is the only lighted parade in the twin cities and features floats, vehicles, fire engines and more. If you can’t make it to one of the parades, we’ll bring the festivities to your TV screen.
Music & Performance
Happy Holidays with Bing and Frank
Friday, Dec. 2 • 9:30 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 17 • 7 p.m.
Our first Christmas program of the month features the timeless combo of Frank Sinatra and Bing Crosby. This early color special from 1957 sees the duo swap carols, songs and stories in an unforgettable holiday special.
The Carpenters: Christmas Memories
Saturday, Dec. 3 • 9 p.m.
Richard and Karen Carpenter created some of the most beloved Christmas songs of all time. Join us the first weekend of the month and get into the holiday spirit by watching some of their best Christmas performances from the 1970s.
Ella Wishes You a Swinging Christmas with Vanessa Williams
Friday, Dec. 9 • 8 p.m.
Ella Fitzgerald’s iconic album of holiday classics is reimagined in a 60-minute performance. The American Pops Orchestra supports singers Vanessa Williams, Norm Lewis, Dee Dee Bridgewater, Carmen Ruby Floyd and more.
Christmas at Belmont
Friday, Dec. 9 • 9 p.m.
One of the most famous Christmas music celebrations in America wraps up our first week of holiday programming. More than 600 Belmont University students perform holiday favorites and classic songs in the Fischer Center for the Performing Arts in Nashville.
O Holy Night: Christmas with the Tabernacle Choir
Tuesday, Dec. 13 • 11 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 19 • 9 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 25 • 11 a.m.
The annual special from Temple Square returns to KAMU for three airings. Tony® Award-nominated performer Megan Hilty and actor Neal McDonough join the 500-person choir and orchestra for a program that weaves together holiday tunes, classic carols, hymns and traditional Irish numbers.
The Nutcracker and the Mouse King
Friday, Dec. 23 • 8 p.m.
This reimagining of Tchaikovsky’s holiday favorite doesn’t feature ballet – instead, a live orchestra is accompanied by narration from stage and film actor Alan Cumming. He recounts the origin story of how a prince got put into a nutcracker and shares what happens when the young girl who saves him grows up.
Celebrate & Sing! Glory to the Newborn King!
Saturday, Dec. 24 • 10 p.m.
Christmas music: Texas style. This spectacular concert from Preston Hollow Presbyterian Church in Dallas includes a 150-voice choir, an organist, handbells, a vocal jazz ensemble and bagpipes. Enjoy the mix of secular and sacred music on your Christmas Eve.
The St. Olaf Christmas Festival: Love Divine
Saturday, Dec. 24 • 11 p.m.
Bring in Christmas Day with renowned student musicians from St. Olaf College. First held in 1912, the annual Christmas festival is led by five conductors and highlights beautiful songs and pieces of music from around the world.
Repeat the Sounding Joy: A Concordia Christmas
Sunday, Dec. 25 • Noon
Over Christmas lunch, enjoy our final music offering of the holiday season. The ensembles of Concordia University Irvine present a festive collection of music that repeats the sounding joy heard on the first Christmas.
A Chef’s Life Holiday Special
Thursday, Dec. 8 • 4 p.m.
Chef Vivian Howard rarely spends the holidays at home during busy seasons at her restaurant. But in this special, she and her husband give their toddler twins a traditional, Southern holiday experience.
America’s Test Kitchen Special: Home for the Holidays
Thursday, Dec. 15 • 4 p.m.
The “Test Kitchen” staff share their favorite holiday recipes for mouth-watering turkey, beef tenderloin and porchetta as well as tasty desserts. The chefs also reminisce about their favorite holiday memories.
Mary Berry’s Ultimate Christmas
Monday, Dec. 19 • 8 p.m.
Thursday, Dec. 22 • 4 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 25 • 11 p.m.
Dame Mary Berry of “The Great British Baking Show” fame returns to PBS to share her perfect three-course Christmas dinner. The beloved chef and baker shows off her time-tested recipes with a complete guide to planning, shopping and preparing for a stress-free day – and everyone’s invited.
Call the Midwife Holiday Specials
Re-watch the 2020 Special:
Thursday, Dec. 15 • 9 p.m.
Re-watch the 2021 Special:
Thursday, Dec. 22 • 9 p.m.
Sunday, Dec. 25 • 8 and 9:30 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 30 • 3:30 p.m.
TV’s most popular nuns are back for another Christmas special. Start by re-watching the holiday episodes from 2020 and 2021 to catch up on the characters and storylines. Then on Christmas Day, join us for back-to-back airings of the new 2022 Holiday Special. It’s December 1967 and life in Poplar is returning to normal after the terrible train crash that ended Season 11. A familiar face from past seasons returns and a festive talent show serves as a town fundraiser. It’s a must-watch: especially with Season 12 of the PBS favorite soon to arrive in early 2023.
All Creatures Great and Small – “The Perfect Christmas”
Sunday, Dec. 25 • 7 p.m.
Sundays in December, KAMU is replaying all seven episodes of Season 2 of the breakout PBS hit. The rerun ends on Christmas Day with an episode full of holiday cheer. Heartfelt friendship and family are at the core of this Christmas special. The month-long replay leads up to the debut of Season 3 starting Sunday, Jan. 8.
History & Travel
European Christmas Markets
Monday, Dec. 19 • 10 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 24 • 6 p.m.
A trip through the cities and towns of Europe, in search of the continent’s best Christmas markets. Town centers, market squares and narrow streets come alive with decorations, treats and knick-knacks.
Lucy Worsley’s 12 Days of Tudor Christmas
Tuesday, Dec. 20 • 8 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 24 • 6:30 p.m.
Join historian Lucy Worsley on a 12-day extravaganza to discover the history of our contemporary Christmas traditions. Some were just as popular 500 years ago – and others have surprising Tudor twists.
Rick Steves’ European Christmas
Tuesday, Dec. 20 • 9 p.m.
Your favorite travel guide and his crew provide an authentic portrait of how Europe celebrates the holiday season. As Rick travels through seven countries, he shares traditions, music and food.
The Film Score: Music for the Winter Holidays
Saturday, Dec. 24 • 7 p.m.
An hour-long special devoted to music from holiday and wintertime movies. Classics like “White Christmas” from “Holiday Inn” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” from “Meet Me in St. Louis” are joined by new favorites like the folk-inspired score for “The Grand Budapest Hotel.”
Holiday Jazz with Dee Alexander!
Saturday, Dec. 24 • 8 p.m.
Chicago’s First Lady of Jazz brings an entertaining and enchanting concert to your radio. The performance includes favorites like “White Christmas” and “Coventry Carol” plus show-stopping renditions of spiritual songs inspired by gospel legend Mahalia Jackson.
Ford’s Theatre Presents: A Christmas Carol
Saturday, Dec. 24 • 9 p.m.
An adaptation of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” – designed for contemporary radio. Acclaimed Washington actor Craig Wallace plays Ebenezer Scrooge and public radio broadcasters Murray Horwitz serves as the narrator. This adaptation captures the magic of the Yuletide classic.
The Christmas Revels: In Celebration of the Winter Solstice 2022
Sunday, Dec. 25 • 7 p.m.
A two-hour music special, perfect for your Christmas night. Musical excerpts, plus a few short poetry and prose readings, are selected from live stage productions in seven cities across the U.S. Expect sacred and secular materials derived from America, Europe and the Middle East.
PBS Kids Holiday Specials
Airing Throughout December
Includes a Special Marathon on Christmas Day from 5-11 a.m.
Holiday specials of your children’s and grandchildren’s favorite PBS programs air on KAMU throughout the month.
- “Arthur’s Perfect Christmas”
- “Curious George: A Very Monkey Christmas”
- “Wild Kratts: A Creature Christmas”
- “Nature Cat: A Nature Carol”
- “The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About Christmas!”
- “Let’s Go Luna! Luna’s Christmas Around the World”
- “Peg + Cat + Holidays”
Use our show search feature to find airtimes for each special – each one airs at least three times in December.
Clown by Quentin Blake
Friday, Dec. 23 • 9:30 p.m.
From illustrator Quentin Blake, this half-hour animated special is a hit for kids just two days before Christmas. The special brings to life the adventures of a toy clown who has been thrown away and goes on a journey to find a new home.
Won’t be able to catch one of these programs? Many are available for on-demand streaming on KAMU Passport. For just $5 a month or $60 a year, you can access thousands of shows – from these Christmas favorites to the best of “MASTERPIECE” dramas and PBS educational programming.
Considering an end-of-year donation to KAMU? Give here to help support the Brazos Valley’s primary public media entity.