NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Saenger Theatre will host a free performance of "Gracias Christmas Cantata" by the world renowned Gracias Choir and Orchestra next month in honor of the theatre's restoration following Hurricane Katrina.

The theatre opens on Friday.

The event, presented by Good News New Orleans Church, is scheduled Oct. 6 at 7 p.m.

The Gracias Choir and Orchestra, founded in 2000 by Pastor Ock Soo Park, is currently presenting the cantata across the U.S. and in Canada. The performance, under the direction of conductor Boris Abalyan from St. Petersburg Conservatory of Music in Russia, is a compilation of opera, musical, and Christmas carols aimed at bringing the true message of the Christmas holiday to life.

Free tickets are available at the Mahalia Jackson Theatre Box Office.

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