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Neil Diamond, Big Time Rush added to 'Christmas In Rockefeller Center'

by jmaloni
Tue, Nov 29th 2011 02:55 pm

Featuring the world premiere of Mariah Carey/Justin Bieber video "All I Want for Christmas is You"

NBC will celebrate the lighting of the world's most famous Christmas tree with a live broadcast from Rockefeller Center in New York City on Wednesday, Nov. 30, from 8 to 9 p.m. The star-studded holiday special will feature performances by Neil Diamond, Big Time Rush, Tony Bennett, Justin Bieber, Michael Bublé, Cee Lo Green, Carole King, Katharine McPhee, Javier Colon and The Radio City Rockettes with a mix of current hits and holiday classics.

Bieber has brought some special guests for his performance and NBC will also premiere his music video with Mariah Carey for "All I Want for Christmas is You." The song, originally recorded and written by Carey for her 1994 album "Merry Christmas," is the most listened to song at the holidays and this new duet is featured on Bieber's Christmas album, "Under the Mistletoe."

The 79th annual holiday extravaganza will feature a Norway Spruce tree that is 74 feet high, 46 feet in diameter and weighs 10 tons.

The tradition of the Rockefeller Christmas tree dates back to the Great Depression. First erected in 1933, the inaugural tree was decked with 700 lights and placed in front of the then eight-month-old RCA Building, now the GE Building. The Christmas tree gathering was enhanced in 1936 with the opening of the Rockefeller Plaza outdoor ice skating pond. NBC-TV televised the tree lighting for the first time in 1951 on "The Kate Smith Show" and as part of the nationwide "Howdy Doody" television show from 1953-55.

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