Arts & Culture

‘Deck the Halls’ again with UK Fine Arts

Listen to a performance of "12 Days of Christmas/Africa" from 2022 "Alltech Celebration of Song."

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 27, 2023) — University of Kentucky’s most talented students, faculty and staff welcome you back to campus to ring in the holidays Wildcat style. From visual art selections for the choosiest of gift recipients to halls filled with the beloved sounds of the season, there is something for everyone to enjoy.


‘Deck the walls’ again, quite literally, with art from Open Studio

Open Studio is back — UK School of Art and Visual Studies will throw its doors open Dec 1st. Open Studio is a free public event which gives Central Kentucky the opportunity to visit art studios, buy one-of-a-kind gifts and celebrate the holidays.

The art studios of undergraduate and graduate students will be open to the public for this rare opportunity and the school's Bolivar Art Gallery will be housing the annual Carey Ellis Juried Student Show, showcasing the best students' work from the school, as well as "In-Between" featuring the work of the graduating digital media design students. Stop on in and get a bowl of chili and stay warm during these winter festivities.

Open Studio highlights will include:

  • custom tree ornaments; 
  • artisanal gift wrapping; 
  • pottery sale; 
  • open art studios of BFA and MFA students;
  • art sales; and 
  • food and song.

Check out Open Studio 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1, at the Art and Visual Studies Building, located at 236 Bolivar St.


Behold the spectacle that is UK Choirs’ ‘Collage’

UK Choirs will present its 26th annual “Collage: A Holiday Spectacular,” a time-honored holiday tradition in the Bluegrass, Dec. 2-3, at the Singletary Center for the Arts Concert Hall. 

The centerpiece of UK's holiday season, “Collage" is a fast-paced and visually exciting concert featuring hundreds of celebrated vocalists and musicians from the UK School of Music and the Lexington Singers Children’s Choir. These beloved concerts of holiday favorites from close to home and around the globe will return to the Singletary stage this weekend.

“Collage” is presented by the UK Choirs under the direction of Jefferson Johnson, director of UK Choral Activities, and Lori Hetzel, associate director of UK Choral Activities. The concerts showcase the department's critically acclaimed student groups: UK Chorale; UK Choristers conducted by Elizabeth Wilson; UK Treble Choir; and UK Men's Chorus, as well as the UK Choirs' a cappella groups, the acoUstiKats, Paws and Listen and Blue Note

Along with the UK Choirs, this season’s concerts will feature performances by Professor Dieter Hennings Yeomans on guitar; UK Trombone Quartet led by Associate Professor Bradley Kerns; UK Tuba-Euphonium Quartet directed by lecturer Brandon A. Smith; SaxCats led by Director of UK Jazz Studies Miles Osland; UK Blue Steel, a steel drum band led by lecturer Josh Smith; UK Holiday Clarinets led by Associate Professor Scott Wright; and crowd favorite, the Grasscats, a bluegrass band led by Johnson.  

In addition to showcasing UK Choirs and musicians at the UK School of Music, each year "Collage" features the rich talents of the Lexington arts community. UK will welcome back to the stage the Lexington Singers Children's Choir, conducted by Hetzel and UK Choirs alumnus Daniel Wesley, for several songs. The programs will also include appearances by choirs from George Rogers Clark High School, Lafayette High School and Franklin County High School. 

“Collage” will help the Bluegrass rejoice in the holiday spirit beginning 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 3 (sold out), at the Singletary Center Concert Hall. A very limited number of tickets remain for these shows. Adult tickets are $42/$20 for students (additional processing fees may apply online) and can be purchased at, by phone at 859-257-4929, or visiting the SCFA Ticket Office in person. 


UK Opera Theatre ‘Make a Joyful Noise’ at Alltech’s 'Celebration of Song'

Celebrate the magic of the holiday season at the traditional “Alltech Celebration of Song” featuring the UK Opera Theatre and winners of the Alltech Vocal Scholarship Competition. The free concert is set for 4 to 5:30 p.m., Dec. 10, at Alltech Arena at the Kentucky Horse Park.

Doors for “Celebration of Song” open at 3 p.m. Parking is free.


UK Jazz Studies, BAJA’s ‘Jazzy Christmas’ sure to warm hearts

Warm up with hot jazz music at Singletary Center as UK Jazz Studies presents the UK Jazz Studies and Bluegrass Area Jazz Ambassadors’ “Jazzy Christmas.” The concert will begin 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 12, in the Singletary Center Recital Hall.

The Bluegrass Area Jazz Association (BAJA) is a nonprofit organization committed to the promotion of jazz education and the performance of jazz in the Bluegrass area. BAJA consists of community musicians and students from the UK School of Music's Jazz Studies Program. BAJA has been performing since 2004 for the enjoyment of the community. 

Tickets to "A Jazzy Christmas" for UK students are free, available exclusively at the Singletary Center Ticket Office (valid UK Student ID required). Adult tickets are $14/$7 for students (additional processing fees may apply online) and can be purchased at, by phone at 859-257-4929, or visiting the SCFA Ticket Office in person.


Sugar Plum Fairy visions fill Bluegrass Youth Ballet’s ‘Nutcracker in One Act’ at Singletary

This shortened performance of “The Nutcracker,” presented in a single, family-friendly act from Bluegrass Youth Ballet, was created with younger audiences in mind, condensing the enchantment to capture the attention of kids. See the magic 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 15, or 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 16, at Singletary Center Concert Hall.

You can enhance your experience with attendance at Clara's Tea Party after the performance. This is your opportunity to mingle with beloved characters from “The Nutcracker” while indulging in delectable sweets and snacks.

“The Nutcracker” has reserved seating. Free tickets for children 2 and under are available exclusively at the Singletary Center Ticket Office. Adult tickets are $28/$23 for students (additional processing fees may apply online) and can be purchased at, by phone at 859-257-4929, or visiting the SCFA Ticket Office in person.


As the state’s flagship, land-grant institution, the University of Kentucky exists to advance the Commonwealth. We do that by preparing the next generation of leaders — placing students at the heart of everything we do — and transforming the lives of Kentuckians through education, research and creative work, service and health care. We pride ourselves on being a catalyst for breakthroughs and a force for healing, a place where ingenuity unfolds. It's all made possible by our people — visionaries, disruptors and pioneers — who make up 200 academic programs, a $476.5 million research and development enterprise and a world-class medical center, all on one campus.   

In 2022, UK was ranked by Forbes as one of the “Best Employers for New Grads” and named a “Diversity Champion” by INSIGHT into Diversity, a testament to our commitment to advance Kentucky and create a community of belonging for everyone. While our mission looks different in many ways than it did in 1865, the vision of service to our Commonwealth and the world remains the same. We are the University for Kentucky.