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On the Front Row with Holiday Gala

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The University of Central Arkansas Chamber Singers and Concert Choir, the Arkansas Chamber Singers and the Vesper Choir from the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff perform traditional carols and other holiday songs, as well as unique arrangements of spiritual hymns.

"We are pleased to feature the amazing talent of these award-winning ensembles in the region," AETN Production Director Carole Adornetto said. "Our viewers are in for a special treat."

The UCA Chamber Singers – a very select ensemble – perform chamber repertoire of the 14th, 15th and 20th centuries. This group is responsible for "Ye Olde Christmasse Madrigal Feaste," a Renaissance Christmas festival now in its 30th year at UCA.

The UCA Concert Choir is the main ensemble of the UCA music department. A chorus of about 90 voices, the choir performs the finest in concert literature, has toured the United States and Europe and is critically acclaimed internationally. The group has won the grand prize in the Great American Choral Festival twice (1982 and 1994) and last year gave an award-winning performance at the Riva Del Garda International Choral Competition in Italy.

The Arkansas Chamber Singers have performed the finest in classical and contemporary repertoire for Arkansas audiences for more than 20 years, enriching the musical appreciation of both performers and audiences. Their work ranges from motets to madrigals to Broadway hits.

The UCA Chamber Singers and Concert Choir, as well as the Arkansas Chamber Singers, are under the direction of professor John Erwin.

The UAPB Vesper Choir has a mission that is artistic, cultural and educational. It acts as a service organization to the total campus, and students sacrifice a great deal of time to carry out the choir's mission. The Vesper choir is under the direction of Dr. Michael J. Bates.

"It's a great and festive way to begin the celebration of the Christmas season," Bates said. "We appreciate the opportunity to perform on AETN and reach out to parts of the state that wouldn't otherwise see the UAPB Vesper Choir perform."

"AETN Presents: A Holiday Music Gala" was taped at the Donald W. Reynolds Performance Hall on the UCA campus and is part of the series' expanded programming, which now includes a variety of arts and cultural subjects.

Previously included in the "AETN Presents" series have been the Arkansas Acoustic Festival; authors John Jeremiah Sullivan, Sandra Cisneros and George Singleton; and performances by the Kat Hood Trio and Toadsuck Symphony.

The Arkansas Educational Television Network provides lifelong learning opportunities, improves and enhances Arkansans' lives and celebrates the unique culture of Arkansas through its programming. AETN's 10 transmitters and numerous cable system connections give it statewide reach.

Segment 1

University of Central Arkansas (UCA) Chamber Singers

The UCA Chamber Singers, a very select ensemble, consists of two small 25-voice groups, which do chamber repertoire of the 14th, 15th, and 20th centuries.~ This group is responsible for "Ye Olde Christmasse Madrigal Feaste", a Renaissance Christmas festival, which is in its 30th year at UCA.~

Song List

And the UCA Concert Choir The UCA Concert Choir is the main ensemble of the UCA Music department.~ A chorus of about 90 voices, it does the finest in concert literature.~ The choir is critically acclaimed internationally, and has toured all over the United States and Europe.~ It has won the Grand Prize in the Great American Choral Festival twice (1982 and 1994) and last year gave an award-winning performance at the Riva Del Garda International Choral Competition in Italy.~

Segment 2

Arkansas Chamber Singers

The Arkansas Chamber Singers have performed the finest in classical and contemporary repertoire for Arkansas audiences for more than 20 years, enriching the musical appreciation of both performers and audiences. Past seasons have included Bach's Magnificat, Mozart's Requiem and Haydn's Creation. They perform works ranging from motets to madrigals to Broadway hits.

A lighthearted Musicological Journey Through the Twelve Days of Christmas, a whirlwind musical journey—a sort of twelve-step History of Western Music. It begins with a plainchant partridge, turtledoves set as a fifteenth-century motet, and French hens in madrigal style. Later sections pay amusing tributes to Handel, Mozart, Saint-Saens, Vivaldi (Gloria), and even Nutcracker and/or...Each of the 12 movements parodies a particular piece, style or genre, ranging from Gregorian Chant to Wagner to John Phillip Sousa.

The UCA Chamber Singers, Concert Choir and the Arkansas Chamber Singers are under the direction of Professor John Erwin

Segment 3

University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB) Vesper Choir The UAPB Vesper Choir has a mission that is artistic, cultural and educational. It serves as a service organization to the total campus and students in the choir sacrifice a great deal of time to carry out the choir's mission.

Selections from the Christmas portion of Messiah by George Frideric Handel

The Vesper choir is under the direction of Dr. Michael J. Bates Assistant Choir Director, Heidi Gordon Finale -- All Groups

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