A symphony and choral groups will perform traditional and operatic holiday pieces.
By Kathryn Alfisi ~ Southeast Missourian
There's hardly anything that brings about the Christmas spirit like music.
This week, the public has two chances to enjoy the musical sounds of the holiday with Southeast Missouri State University's "Choral Masterworks" and the Heartland Pops Orchestra and Chorus' "Holiday with the Pops."
"Choral Masterworks" begins at 8 p.m. Tuesday and features the Southeast Missouri Symphony Orchestra, the University Choir and Choral Union.
The University Choir is made up of students who auditioned for parts, while the Choral Union is open to the public and requires no audition.
These groups perform together at the end of each school semester, and the performance held at the end of November or beginning of December is traditionally a festive concert.
The night will start off with the symphony performing the overture to Giuseppe Verdi's opera "Nabucco" and "Eight Russian Folk" by Anatol Liadov. Then the choral groups will join the symphony for performances of "The Song of Destiny" by Johannes Brahms and "Psalm 150" by Anton Bruckner.
"Both are very joyous in nature. They suit the holiday spirit really well," said symphony director Dr. Sara Edgerton.
The concert will conclude with a performance of "What Sweeter Music," a Christmas carol by contemporary British composer John Rutter.
"It's very traditional," Edgerton said of the piece.
Less traditional is some of the music that will be performed by the Heartland Pops Orchestra and Chorus at its "Holiday with the Pops" at 7 p.m. Thursday at Lynwood Baptist Church in Cape Girardeau.
This is the third annual holiday concert for the Heartland Pops, which Jerry Ganiel, the music director at Immaculate Conception Church, started three years ago.
It now consists of 30 orchestra members and 22 choral members.
Thursday's performance will also feature performances by The Heartland Children's Choir from Dexter, Mo., six-piece a capella group The Heartland Victorian Voices, the Grace Notes Bell Choir from Grace United Methodist Church and the Junior Bells of Joy from Immaculate Conception Church. Amy Jaquin of KFVS12 will also be present to narrate "The Christmas Story."
There is even an audience sing-along that will give everyone a chance to belt out holiday favorites like "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer."
In addition to the live performance, "Holiday with the Pops" will be televised this year on KFVS12 at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 24 and 2 p.m. Dec. 25 and on UPN at 9:30 p.m. Dec. 24 and 5:30 p.m. Dec. 25.
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