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    Categories: Entertainment

Singers ready to unleash holiday cheer

If you’re Getting in the Mood For Christmas, drop by the Arden next Friday night. The St. Albert Singers Mixed Adult Choir, known for their heartfelt joy, stands and delivers a traditional concert of holiday gems.

Performed by 55 lush voices, the 90-minute concert with intermission will support spiritual and sacred, secular and sentimental, says musical director Criselda Mierau, now at the Singers’ helm for 16 years.

“The blend of men’s and women’s voices resonates with a lot of people. It sustains the mood and offers something unique to the season and that’s highly appreciated,” says Mierau.

One of the works she is most excited about is British choral composer Randall Stroope’s Sure On This Shining Night. “It has the potential to blow the roof off if we do it right. It’s got quiet moments. It has huge moments. It covers a whole range of emotions and I think it’s a stunner,” she says.

“It introduces lyrics about the winter and summer solstice and conveys it as one piece — a shining moment in a night. It evokes standing outside on a clear night and looking at the stars, the heavens and the firmament.”

“It talks about healing the earth. The lyrics are incredibly profound and the music is stirring. It’s one of the most interesting settings I’ve heard.”

Even as Mierau gushes about Shining Night, the choir’s favourite appears to be Garth Brooks’ countrified Unto You This Night conducted by Vera Carter. “It is very melodic and flows nicely. It has some nice singable moments and they identify with that.”

Another song that resonates with tender clarity and pays homage to baby Jesus is the easily recognizable carol, What Child is This, performed to the melody of the 16th century English folk tune Greensleeves.

Throwing a bit of jazzy fun into the evening, Mierau pulls out Benny Goodman’s In the Mood and adds a few Christmas lyrics that “will leave you humming.”

And in addition to the traditional sing-along, the choir is performing What My True Love Gave to Me (What To Do With All the Presents) based on The 12 Days of Christmas melody. “It’s just too funny. Based on the other times we’ve sung it, it’s gonna bring many smiles if not outright chuckles.”

There are 30 tickets left for St. Albert Singers Women’s Ensemble concert tomorrow at St. Albert Inn. This Winter Wonderland concert focuses on pop/jazz standards such Rockin’ Round the Christmas Tree, Jingle Bell Rock, and a Jingle Bell medley of Michael BublĂ© songs.

The concert starts at 4:30 p.m. Tickets are $17. Call 780-451-3090.

Preview

Getting in the Mood
St. Albert Singers Mixed Adult Choir
Friday, Dec. 18 at 8 p.m.
Arden Theatre
Tickets: $17. Call Jody 780-451-3090

Anna Borowiecki: Anna Borowiecki joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2000. She reports on local people and events in the arts, entertainment and food industry. She also writes general news and features.