Mount Holyoke's cherished annual tradition, Christmas Vespers, will be presented Sunday, December 2 at 4 pm and 7:30 pm in Abbey Chapel. This year's program will feature the Mount Holyoke Glee Club and Chamber Singers, conducted by Lindsay Pope; the MHC Chorale, conducted by Lindsay Pope and assistant conductor Amanda Bistolfo; the Vocal Jazz Ensemble, directed by Mark Gionfriddo; and the English Handbell Ensemble. Organist Larry Schipull will also perform.
The event begins, as it has for decades, with the singing of a traditional Gregorian chant as the College’s Glee Club processes by candlelight. The works that follow will celebrate the beauty of the winter season and range from festive to contemplative, representing a variety of sacred motets, jazz standards, and contemporary compositions. Featured composers include Benjamin Britten, Zoltan Kodaly, Gustav Holst, Lana Walter, Henk Badings, Knut Nystedt, and Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.
The concert will also feature jazz arrangements by MHC’s Gionfriddo, and traditional music and familiar carols for an audience sing-along.
Mount Holyoke Vespers dates back to the late 1800s and has long been a popular event in the Pioneer Valley and beyond.
There is no charge for admission, but seating in Abbey Chapel is limited. Doors open 35 minutes prior to each performance. Abbey Chapel is wheelchair accessible.
Vespers will also be performed at 8 pm on Friday, December 7, at New York City's St. Bartholomew's Church. For the New York Vespers ticket information, visit www.mountholyokeclubofnewyork.com.