UW Presents Holiday Gala Concert Saturday and Sunday

December 3, 2013
Man in santa hat playing upright bass
The wonders of the holiday season will be celebrated during the Annual Gala Holiday Concerts. (UW Photo)

Celebrate the wonder of the season at the University of Wyoming’s annual Gala Holiday Concerts Saturday, Dec. 7, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 8, at 3 p.m. in the Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts Concert Hall.

The Symphony Association’s Gala Holiday Dinner and social hour are scheduled at 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, in the lobby of the UW Visual Arts Center.

Gala tickets cost $10 for the public, $6 for UW students and $7 for senior citizens. Dinner tickets cost $45 for adults and $25 for children 12 or under. For tickets and information, call (307) 766-6666, visit www.uwyo.edu/finearts, or visit the Wyoming Union or Performing Arts Center box offices.

The ensemble will feature Bel Canto Women’ Choir, Civic Chorus, Singing Statesmen, Symphony Orchestra and Wind Symphony, directed by Robert Belser, Holly Dalrymple, Michael Griffith and Nicole Lamartine.

The Singing Statesmen will perform a modern take on the 16th century tune “Gaudete,” which announces the birth of the Christ child and includes metallic, driving percussion juxtaposed with fervent and lush chords.

Bel Canto’s “Candlelight Carol” paints images of Christ born in a manger under the glow of candlelight accompanied by hosts of angels singing “Gloria, in Excelsis Deo!” They will join with the Statesmen to present “Hope for Resolution,” a joyous combination of a hymn tune paired with an uplifting African chant in Zulu.

The Civic Choir will present “Fum Fum,” a Catalan Christmas Carol that joyously tells the story of Christ's birth and the Christmas celebration, along with “Blow, Blow Thou Winter Wind” from Shakespeare’s “As You Like It.”

The Wind Symphony will perform old and new pieces including “Veni, Veni, Emmanuel” through the Renaissance Coventry Carol to a rock setting of “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing.”

Finally, the UW Symphony will open with a Boston Pops arrangement of “Carol of the Bells” then combine “Little Bolero Boy” with the melody of “Little Drummer Boy” into Ravel’s “Bolero.” During the finale, all of the groups will come together for two works: the world premiere of Robert Wendel’s “This is Chanukah” and the end title music from the holiday movie “The Polar Express.”

The Symphony Association’s Gala Holiday Dinner will precede the Saturday performance with wine, music and a silent auction. All proceeds support the Symphony Association scholarships fund.

Before the concerts and at intermission, the Laramie High School Concert Choir and Plainsmen Singers, directed by Mike Hancey, plus the UW Happy Jacks and Jazz Combos, will sing in the lobby. As a postlude, organist Punch Williamson will perform his traditional holiday organ suite for the departing audience.

For more information about the program, call (307) 766-5139.

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