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JUNEAU - Holidays music piped into retail stores might start to wear on holiday shoppers' nerves, but nothing will restore spirits like a chorus performing classic songs of the season.
Lyric Opera community chorus sings in the season 121008 AE 1 CCW Staff Writer JUNEAU - Holidays music piped into retail stores might start to wear on holiday shoppers' nerves, but nothing will restore spirits like a chorus performing classic songs of the season.

Photos Courtesy Of Francis Field

Accompanists Lorrie Heagy and J. Allan MacKinnon accompany the Juneau Lyric Opera's community chorus in a recent rehearsal for the "Holiday Pops" concert Dec. 12-14.


Photos Courtesy Of Francis Field

Accompanists Lorrie Heagy and J. Allan MacKinnon accompany the Juneau Lyric Opera's community chorus in a recent rehearsal for the "Holiday Pops" concert Dec. 12-14.

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Story last updated at 12/11/2008 - 5:02 pm

Lyric Opera community chorus sings in the season

JUNEAU - Holidays music piped into retail stores might start to wear on holiday shoppers' nerves, but nothing will restore spirits like a chorus performing classic songs of the season.

The Juneau Lyric Opera's community chorus will present a Holiday Pops concert Dec. 12-14.

Chorus Director Sally Smith first organized a Christmas choral concert in 1971.

"There's so much (musical) literature that people don't do that much anymore," she said. "We hear it on the radio as "Jingle Bells" kinds of things, but not real choral arrangements of the music as we used to do it."

A total of 49 singers from the community will participate in the concert. Some are familiar voices from the Juneau music scene, but there will be new voices joining in chorus as well.

"The nice thing about choruses is that they are usually open to the community," said chorus member and JLO Director Frances Field. "You get a great group of people who have never sung together as a group before and you make this (beautiful) sound. It's pretty amazing what can happen."

The first half of the concert will include secular songs such as "White Christmas" and "It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas," but in choral settings unlike what is usually heard on the radio, Smith said.

Guitarist Dan Hopson will accompany and also perform solo pieces, such as "Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire."

In the second half of the program, the chorus will move on to sacred pieces such as "O Holy Night," "Adestes Fidelis" and "Silent Night." Bach's "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring" will by accompanied by guitar and Juneau Brass will join the chorus on "Joy to the World." Lorrie Heagy and J. Allan MacKinnon will bring their talents to the piano accompaniment.

The chorus has been able to avoid buying expensive scores for the copyrighted music by borrowing music from a host of different organizations in town, including the high school, Northern Light United Church and the Juneau Oratorio Choir.

"We couldn't do it without the support of these places," Smith said.

The concert is family-friendly and discounted family tickets are available.

"This is a great concert to bring families to," Field said. "If people have been having trouble getting into the holiday spirit this is going to (cheer) them right up. It just warms the heart to hear."

The Juneau Lyric Opera's community chorus will perform their Holiday Pops concert Dec. 12 and 13 at 7:30 p.m. at Chapel by the Lake and Dec. 14 at 3 p.m. at the Juneau Arts and Culture Center. Admission is $12 for adults, $8 for students and seniors and $30 for a family. Tickets are available at Hearthside Books.


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