I would say that the best thing about Christmas is all of those beloved Christmas songs you hear every second on every single radio station. But on Thursday, December 11th, the three choirs (Concert Chorus, VOX and Chorale) of HHS made those Christmas songs go from tiresome to delightful once again.
Being a member of concert chorus, I can personally say that the best word for the process of becoming performance ready is this: chaos! We had very little time to prepare and our Chorus director, Mr. John Schnelle, is still a noobie learning the ropes here at HHS.
But despite these setbacks, the concert was amazing.
The evening started off with the tradition of VOX singing “Carol of the Bells,” which always sounds beautiful. Chorale sang alongside Concert Chorus’s traditional Christmas songs such as “Sleigh Ride,” “Do You Hear What I Hear,” “Silver Bells” and “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.” Though there were some minor mistakes in “Silver Bells,”,they did not distract from the overall joyous sounds of the carols. As Mr. Schnelle says, “Make lots of mistakes, I’d rather have you make lots of confident mistakes than no sound at all.”
Then VOX stepped away from conventional Christmas songs and sang “A Ceremony of Carols.” This exquisite collection of poems portrays the birth of Jesus. The mood of the carols vary, ranging from the lightheartedness of Mary holding Jesus in her arms to the coldness of God fighting against the dark forces of Satan. The finale ends the way it began, with an overall sense of joyful closure. VOX was able to depict all of these emotions perfectly; fantastic job ladies!
The concert ended with a sing-a-long of “Joy To The World” and “Silent Night.” All members of the audience were encouraged to sing along and sure enough, the performers were not the only ones singing. The tradition of asking the alumni to join the choruses on stage once again added to the spirit of the sing-a-long. As for the grand finale, for the first time in HHS, the tradition of the choruses singing the “Hallelujah Chorus” had a twist. The HHS chamber wind band accompanied the choirs for an extraordinary blend of music. It really gave the powerful sound the “Hallelujah Chorus” demands.
An awesome job all around to everyone in the music department, I can’t wait to attend the band concert — hopefully now, people won’t be moaning about Christmas coming around the corner.
UPDATE: We now have the program from the concert. Click here to see it: HHS Winter Choral Concert.