WT orchestra, choirs to give a pair of free Christmas concerts Sunday
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By Chip Chandler — Digital Content Producer
An army of West Texas A&M University musicians will kick off the holiday season in style in a pair of Sunday concerts.
Christmas at West Texas A&M University: Sing a Song for the Glorious Season is set for 4 and 7 p.m. Sunday in Mary Moody Northen Recital Hall on the Canyon campus. Admission is free, but tickets are required. Call 806-651-2840.
The concert will feature the WT choirs and orchestra, with special appearances by the Canyon High School Chorale, violinist Yevgeny Zvonnikov and guest conductor Dongin Youn of Korea.
The performance has more of a classical flair than a holiday pops concert, WT orchestra director Mark Bartley said, citing pieces like the final movement of Camille Saint-Saëns' Symphony No. 3 (the "Organ Symphony"), René Clausen's setting of Psalm 150 (including a rarely heard orchestral accompaniment provided by the composer, a former WT choir director) and more.
"We've included audience carols as the transition so there's never a pause in the action," Bartley said. "There's always a group performing or the audience singing carols, so there's a good flow."
The concert will be recorded by Maroon Productions for a 8 p.m. Dec. 19 broadcast on Panhandle PBS. It will encore at 1 a.m. Dec. 21, 9:30 p.m. Dec. 25 and 2:30 a.m. Dec. 27.
Sunday's concerts are the finale of a weekend full of holiday activity in Canyon, including:
- WT Festival of Lights: The West Texas A&M University campus is lit for the season in a free party from 5:30 to 9 p.m. Friday, featuring caroling, cookies and hot cocoa at the Buffalo Fountain at WT Vaughan Pedestrian Mall.
- Christmas Open House: Enjoy an 1890s-style holiday in Pioneer Town, photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus, Christmas crafts and storytelling and more at this annual Panhandle-Plains Historical Museum event, running 6 to 9 p.m. Friday and 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday at the museum, 2503 Fourth Ave. Admission is free with one can of food per person for High Plains Food Bank.
- Christmas in Canyon: Holiday festivities in Canyon include a visit with Santa from 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday at Cole Community Center north entrance, 300 N. 16th St.; the Canyon Lions Club pancake dinner from 4 to 7 p.m. Saturday at the Cole Community Center south entrance; the Parade of Lights at 6:30 p.m. down Fourth Avenue; and the Christmas tree lighting ceremony after the parade at the downtown square.