After performing Mozart’s complex Requiem earlier this year, the Whitehorse Community Choir will present a more varied bill of fare for its Gloria, Hallelujah Christmas concert this weekend.
At the same time, says conductor Barbara Chamberlin, the 80-voice choir is laying the groundwork for some other ambitious projects down the road.
“We’re doing a couple of jazz pieces, just in case we want to kind of a jazzy Christmas, and possibly use the Big Band, or something the equivalent of it,” she says.
“Then we’re starting one called Misa Criolla, by Ariel Ramárez. It’s a South American Christmas cantata. It’s fabulous – very rhythmic, as you might imagine.
This year, the choir will present the cantata’s “Gloria”.
“And we are starting to work on songs from The Messiah. That will be a few years, but we’re doing “All Ye Like Sheep”.
The concert will also hint at another long-range project.
“For the encore, we’re doing a piece that I’ll just say is a surprise,” Chamberlin says. “We would like to work with an outside choir and kind of share our music back and forth, so it’s one of those songs to share with another choir.”
Besides standard Christmas offerings such as Handel’s “Hallelujah”, the choir will also present Beethoven’s “Hallelelujah”, while the 18-member Neptune Singers will contribute Vivaldi’s “Gloria”.
“Hence the name of the concert,” Chamberlin says. “Half the songs we’re doing have either “Gloria” or “Hallelujah”, or “Gloria, Hallelujah” in them.”
There is much more in store – including a Hebrew song, “Al Hanisim”, Purcell’s “Shivering Chorus” and Fauré’s “Pie Jesu”, as well as Caribbean and French carols – in a program that also includes the Persephone Singers and the 16-voice Chamber Choir.
Gloria, Hallelujah takes place December 2 and 3 at the Yukon Arts Centre, beginning at 8 p.m.
On December 10, the Persephone Singers and the Chamber Choir will join the main choir for a concert at the St. Elias Convention Centre in Haines Junction.