Posted: November 17, 2006
Nearly 150 students will participate in Mount Holyoke's annual Christmas Vespers Sunday, December 3, at 4 and 7:30 pm in Abbey Chapel. Performing will be the Mount Holyoke Glee Club, Chamber Singers, and Chorale, directed by Kimberly Dunn; the Vocal Jazz and Chamber Jazz Ensembles, directed by Mark Gionfriddo; the Mount Holyoke Orchestra, directed by Eric Benjamin; and the English Handbell Choir, led by student Heather Waddell '07. College organist Larry Schipull is also featured.
In addition to the familiar congregational carols and the much-beloved candlelight Gregorian chant processional, the concert will feature A Ceremony of Carols for women's choir and harp by Benjamin Britten. Each choral ensemble will present a section of the Ceremony, paired with complementary pieces and hymns that provide secular and sacred commentary on each of Britten's chosen medieval texts. In this way, the Ceremony of Carols will provide a thematic framework for the concert.
The concert also features premieres of compositions by Mount Holyoke faculty; the concert will open with a jazz arrangement of "The Holly and the Ivy" by Mark Gionfriddo and will close with Eric Benjamin's composition, "Ideo Gloria," written for the combined choirs, Handbell Choir, and orchestra.
There is no admission charge for this concert, but seating in Abbey Chapel is limited. Doors open 35 minutes prior to each performance.
If you miss the concert on campus or want to attend twice, the Vespers will be repeated on Friday, December 8, at St. Bartholomew's Church in New York City.