By Jonathan Borge
Dec 03, 2015 @ 1:30 pm
D Dipasupil/WireImage

The countdown to Christmas is officially underway!

Just as the clock struck nine last night in New York City’s Rockefeller Center, hundreds of eager fans from all over gleefully whipped out their cameras to snap their best shot of the 83rd annual tree lighting, which gives a colorful dose of pizzazz to the megawatt natural structure year after year. Yes, the star of the show truly was the 78-foot Norway Spruce from Gardiner, New York that now shines with 45,000 LED lights daily through Jan. 6. However, the evening’s pre-lighting show brought us a stream of unforgettable performances.

For NBC’s Christmas in Rockefeller Center special, Today anchors Al Roker, Natalie Morales, and Willie Geist didn't let rainy skies get in their way of welcoming holiday cheer. So what took everyone’s breathe away? A gilded display of white and gold Christmas trees along with oversized ornaments and larger-than-life gift-wrapped boxes decorating Rockefeller Center’s plaza stage, where chart-topping stars stepped out to belt out holiday favorites. Dressed in a cool and casual denim jacket with a shearling collar and matching black jeans, Andy Grammer sang his renditions of classics like “Little Drummer Boy."

Later, acapella group Pentatonix performed a moving version “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing” while Carly Rae Jepsen bopped to “Let It Snow.” Perhaps the jazziest voice of the evening was Michael Buble’s, who slipped into a shimmery tuxedo for his performance of Christmas standards. A rocking, guitar-paired performance by Sting also swayed the audience. But who was the evening’s standout? None other than R&B crooner and The Wiz Live star Mary J. Blige. The singer rocked a statement fur coat and performed “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.”

RELATED: See the 2015 Holiday Windows in New York City

See what all of the top stars wore below—and prepare to ring in the holiday spirit.

Mary J. Blige

Peter Kramer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Michael Buble

Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic

Carly Rae Jepsen

Peter Kramer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images


Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic

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Andy Grammer

Gilbert Carrasquillo/FilmMagic