On Nov. 29 and 30, North Island Choral, with a supporting orchestra of 27 musicians, will perform their winter concert A Choral Advent.
Advent, from the Latin meaning “coming”, is a season beginning Dec. 1 and observed in many Christian churches as a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the celebration of the birth of Jesus at Christmas.
The works chosen by artistic director Paul Colthorpe celebrate Advent through the centuries. We open with Purcell’s Hail! Bright Cecilia in recognition of the patron saint of music and then perform a beautiful 16th century piece by Palestrina, O Magnum Mysterium.
The piece expresses the joy and awe that was felt by the shepherds as they celebrated and worshiped the Christ-child in the manger on Christmas Eve.
From the 19th century, Franz Schubert’s Magnificat presents the joy felt by Mary when she learns she is to give birth to Christ.
The orchestra with strings, woodwind, and brass accompanies the four-part choir and the four soloists who sing the peaceful middle section of the three-section work. The choir will be supported by accompanist, Elvera Penner, and the orchestra with concertmaster Corinne Innes, along with soloists Sophie Simard, Lisa Stephens-Deith, Brian Lawrence and Christoper Bellamy.
Francis Poulenc’s Gloria written in 1959 for soprano solo, sung by Carol Anne Parkinson, orchestra and chorus is a setting of the Gloria text from the ordinary mass.
As a 20th century composition, it’s six movements exhibit elements of earlier music as well as the more modern, brassy sounds of jazz. There are a number of key changes from major to minor, quick tempos which give a dance-like impression, and slower, mysterious parts.
Join us for a memorable afternoon or evening of wonderful music in celebration of advent along with the opportunity to sing some Christmas carols.
The concerts are on Friday, Nov. 29 at 7:30 p.m. and on Saturday Nov. 30 at 2 p.m., at St. George’s United Church, 505 6th Street in Courtenay.
Tickets are $20 and can be purchased at Blue Heron Books in Comox and Laughing Oyster Books in Courtenay. Tickets can also be obtained at the door. Tickets for ages 12 and under can be purchased at the door for $5.
For more information: northislandchoral.ca