BY S. WIILLIAM AITKEN
Magnificent “Magnificats” and a medley of English Carols combine to bring a joyful musical spirit to the annual Christmas Concert by the St. Peter’s Choir and Soloists!
Join us this Sunday, December 7th at 5:00 p.m. for this wonderful concert which combines our choir with a chamber orchestra and the organ. Two settings of the Magnificat—the song which the Gospels attribute to the Virgin Mary on hearing she is to be the mother of the Savior—will begin and end the program. The first setting is by the French composer, Marc-Antoine Charpentier (1643-1704), who lived and worked in Paris during the reign of Louis XIV. This setting for choir, soloists, strings, 2 flutes and chamber organ, is elegant, delightful, and moves the text with a beautiful lilt through all these musicians. The second setting is Johann Sebastian Bach’s (1685-1750) brilliant masterwork which was first performed on Christmas Eve in 1723. Scored for choir, soloists, strings, 2 oboes, 2 flutes, 3 trumpets and continuo, this work is at times explosive, fiery, introspective, complex and masterful. It is one of Bach’s significant compositions, and so different from the Charpentier.
In between these two compositions will be the 20th century English composer of “The Planets” – Gustav Holst’s (1874-1934) Christmas Day—a medley of English Christmas Carols for choir, soloists and the organ. These familiar carols will bring a smile to your face and warmth to your heart.
And, if this great concert is not enough, the concert will be followed by a superb holiday reception, hosted by the Woman’s Guild. So, bring your friends and join us for this free holiday concert, one of St. Peter’s signature events!