Tapestry Singers to present varied holiday concert
“Woven in Song: A December Tapestry,” the Tapestry Singers of Maine annual holiday concert, will be presented at the Newcastle Second Congregational Church in two performances on Saturday, Dec. 16 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 17 at 4 p.m., under the direction of conductor Beth Preston.
Known for its wide-ranging repertoire, the group will perform traditional Christmas carols such as “The First Noel” and the “Somerset Wassail,” along with two Hanukkah songs. Several well-known carols including “The Holly and the Ivy” and “Rise Up, Shepherd, and Follow” will be sung in arrangements by noted 20th and 21st century composers. In addition, “Spotless Rose” by Ola Gjeilo will be sung in Norwegian, while the two Hanukkah songs will be sung in Hebrew.
The concert begins with a work by American composer Stephen Paulus, “Canticum Novum,” which features energetic percussion and piano accompaniment. Paulus, a beloved and prolific composer of choral music from St. Paul, Minnesota, passed away in 2014.
Audience members also will enjoy hearing several pieces accompanied by harp, oboe, flute, and piano. The instrumental musicians performing are: Sean Fleming, piano and organ; Suki Flanagan, harp; Kristin Fox, oboe; Marcus Hutchins, flute; and Dave Martin, guitar. Four vocal soloists will be featured during the concert: Sarah Orandello, Jenny Brown, Heather Eilowe, and John Strong. In what has become an annual tradition, Tapestry Singers will close the concert by surrounding the audience in a beautiful candlelit rendition of “Silent Night, Holy Night.”
Now in its 27th year, Tapestry Singers is an auditioned amateur group, but the music it tackles is often sophisticated and unusual. Ranging in age from high school to retirement, the members share a love of music, harmony, challenges, and camaraderie.
Tickets purchased at the door for the concert are $15 for adults, no charge for students. To purchase tickets in advance, visit www.tapestrysingersmaine.org/tickets. There is a $1 handling charge added to tickets bought online.
The church address is 51 Main St., Newcastle.