Watch Full Pioneer Day Concerts Featuring Amazing Guest Artists
Pioneer Day is an official Utah holiday that is celebrated on July 24. It commemorates the arrival and legacy of the original Mormon pioneers, who settled the state of Utah after migrating across the United States from the Midwest.
In the years following the death of Joseph Smith, the first president and prophet of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, many Church members, organized by companies, took the long journey by foot to the Rocky Mountains in the west, staring in 1846. Some pushed handcarts or carried their belongings by hand; others used farm wagons pulled by oxen. The Mormon pioneer migration, which continued for many years, was taken by approximately 70,000 people.
Depending on when certain companies started their journey, some suffered tremendous loss due to winter weather and lack of supplies. The Martin and Willie handcart companies, which left in July of 1856, got caught in violent snowstorms in Wyoming and were quickly running out of food. Although Brigham Young sent rescue teams with supplies from Salt Lake City, many travelers died along the trail as a result of exposure to the weather and lack of food.
Each year in Utah, Pioneer Day celebrations include parades, rodeos, festivals, fireworks, and more. Every summer, the youth of the LDS Church embark on pioneer “treks,” where they reenact the faith-building experience of the pioneers.
The Mormon Tabernacle Choir holds annual Pioneer Day concerts as part of the community-wide celebrations. This year, the Choir will hold special Broadway-themed concerts on Friday and Saturday, July 20 and 21, at 8 p.m. The exciting guest artists are Matthew Morrison, Laura Michelle Kelly, and Oscar “Andy” Hammerstein III.
As you prepare for Pioneer Day, make sure to watch and share these videos featuring guest artists such as Laura Osnes, Santino Fontana, Alex Boyé, the King’s Singers, Lindsey Stirling, Nathan Pacheco, and Katherine Jenkins.
Katherine Jenkins (2012)
Laura Osnes (2015)
The King’s Singers (2016)
Alex Boyé (2017)
Lindsey Stirling and Nathan Pacheco (2013)
Although the full 2013 concert is no longer available, watch Lindsey Stirling perform a medley of “Scotland, the Brave/Simple Gifts,” followed by Nathan Pacheco’s rendition of “Nessun Dorma.”
Santino Fontana (2014)
Santino Fontana’s full episode is no longer availble, but you can watch his performace of “Ten Minutes Ago,” from Broadway's Cinderella, which also starred Laura Osnes.