"Christmas with Canticus"
4 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 10.
“Christmas with Canticus” will highlight the many talents of Canticus Vocal Ensemble when it performs a broad array of popular holiday music at 4 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 10, at Englewood Christian Church.
The songs span both sacred and secular compositions and include such familiar classics as “Ave Maria” and an up-tempo arrangement of Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas.” Dr. Scott Peterson, Canticus’ artistic director and the choir’s founder, provides a review of some of the compositions that concertgoers will be treated to when they attend “Christmas with Canticus”:
— “Medieval Gloria” and “Sing Softly For There He Sleeps” are by Vijay Singh, Canticus board member and professor of music at Central Washington University. “Medieval Gloria” re-creates an entrance processional hymn from the early Christian Church using the “Glory to God in the Highest” text from the liturgy. It is one of Singh’s most popular pieces and is performed by choirs all over the nation. “Sing Softly For There He Sleeps” is a “Christmas Dedication,” which admonishes those who approach baby Jesus to remain silent.
— “I Am So Glad Each Christmas Eve” is a Norwegian Christmas song that, as Peterson notes, “has been one of my personal favorites since I was a kid and I just wanted to write an updated version of it.”
— Canticus will perform two works by Susan LaBarr, one of the newest composers on the music scene. “The Angel Gabriel From Heaven Came” is an arrangement of an old tune that hearkens back to music of the medieval time. “Midwinter Song” is an original tune and features an opening solo on piano, which will be performed by Anne Schilperoort, the choir’s longtime collaborative pianist.
— “Carol of the Bells” by Peter J. Wilhousky is probably one of the most popular choral songs for the Christmas season, proven by countless parodies by candy makers to cell phone companies.
— “Ule Lume Lagadale (Over Snowy Winter Roads)” arranged by Ken Berg is an Estonian folk carol, which reflects the joys of traveling by sleigh over the wintry countryside.
— Stephen Dombek's brand new arrangement of “Wexford Carol” brings back an old holiday favorite in a stunning setting which shimmers in holiday light.
— “Sweeter Still” by Eric William Barnum brings both the sacred and secular together. Barnum’s lyrics evoke sounds of Christmas bells and the sight of snow falling softly: “And sweet is the warmth and the/soft glow from a fire./But sweeter still is the joy,/when I see the family round the Christmas tree,/Oh what joy it brings/For you and for me.”
The concert will also continue a tradition of featuring members of the Canticus Vocal Ensemble. Schilperoort and Darin Kaschmitter will play a two-piano version of “Good Christian Men, Rejoice”; Dean Millett will perform “The First Noel” on classical guitar; Elizabeth Scott will play “J. S. Bach's Partita No. 2 in D Minor: Allemande.”
Tickets for “Christmas with Canticus” are $20 for adults and $5 for students. They may purchased at the door (credit cards are welcome) or online at www.yakimacanticus.com.