Ceremony of Lessons and Carols in Newcastle and Brunswick
The St. Cecilia Chamber Choir, conducted by Linda Blanchard and accompanied by Sean Fleming on organ and a professional string quartet, will present its annual Lessons and Carols Christmas concerts on Friday, Dec. 8 at 7:30 p.m., at the Second Congregational Church (51 Main St.) in Newcastle, and Saturday, Dec. 9 at 4 p.m. at the Bowdoin College Chapel (255 Maine St.,), Brunswick.
Sublime music by Renaissance composers William Byrd and Thomas Weelkes will be featured: "An Earthly Tree An Heavenly Fruit" and "Hosanna to the Son of David." A beautiful setting by Peter Bloesch of the ancient text "There Is No Rose" will be sung.
Bloesch has made a home as a composer in a wide range of genres, including music for films, orchestras, and choruses. Also included will be "People Look East" by local composer Richard Francis, an "Ave Maria” setting for women's chorus by Brahms, the haunting "Balulalow" by Peter Warlock, and a setting of "Joys Seven" by Stephen Cleobury, who was for many years the Director of Music for the Choir of King's College, Cambridge.
As a special treat, Eric Whitacre's "Glow," written for the “World of Color – Winter Dreams” show which premiered at Disney California Adventure Park in California, will be performed.
Hermione Blanchard-Fleming and Samantha Francis, ages twelve and six, of Damariscotta will lead the candlelight processionals and Hermione will sing "Silent Night" as a solo. With audience sing-along caroling as well, this concert is sure to be a treat for the whole family.
For more than 20 years, St. Cecilia Chamber Choir has been providing challenging musical opportunities and music scholarships for gifted local youth. This year, two Lincoln Academy students are members of the Choir and will sing in the Christmas concerts: Helen Newell and Maya Bailey, both of Newcastle. Since the Choir’s inception, over 25 gifted young students have sung with us, many continuing to study music in college and beyond.
Advance tickets or reservations are strongly encouraged for this popular event. Tickets are $20 for adults, free for students. Purchase them at Sherman’s Maine Coast Book Shop & Cafe (Main Street), Damariscotta or online at www.ceciliachoir.org.
For more information, visit the St. Cecilia website or call 207-380-2768.