Sing We Noel 2019

Posted Wednesday, October 16, 2019 in Culture

Sing We Noel 2019

Virginia Flanagan of Alna accompanied the Oratorio Chorale for Sing We Noel on Dec. 14. Courtesy of Oratorio Chorale

by Gina Hamilton

The Oratorio Chorale, under the baton of Emily Isaacson, performed a refreshed program of Sing We Noel at St. Paul’s in Brunswick on Saturday for several performances.

They will perform again on Dec. 21 at the Episcopal Church of St. Mary in Falmouth for three concerts – 11 a.m., 2 p.m., and 5 p.m.

Virginia Flanagan of Alna played the harp, and Joel Pierce of Topsham played organ to accompany the choir.

Among seasonal favorites, the Chorale also performed pieces from G.F. Handel’s “Israel in Egypt”, which was performed in its entirety in November, and Gustav Holst’s ‘Hymns of the Rig-Veda’, which  will be performed by the Oratorio Chorale’s small chorus for women’s voices, The Sweetest in the Gale, in April.

The rich, deep voices of the Chorale were in excellent form throughout, as the program of holiday music unfolded. New additions to the program included “Good King Wenceslas”, with soloists Bill Doughty and Finn Dierks-Brown, who not only sang the roles of King and Page, but acted them out as well in the best mummer tradition,  “Bring Rest, Sweet Dreaming Child”,  a sweet Christmas work written by modern composer Tarik O’Regan, and traditional English and Cornish carols, “Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day” and “Sans Day Carol”, with its homily to the holly tree. 

As always, Sing We Noel is a chance to slow down from the frenzy of the holiday period, take a deep breath, hold our own babies – children are welcome at Isaacson’s concerts, and especially at Sing We Noel, where children are invited to play a role in decorating the church, and given items to keep them busy if the music isn’t holding their attention fully – and reflect on the stillness and peace the holidays should bring.

It is a gift to the community, a rare moment of love and light, brought together under the universal language of music. Don’t miss it, either in Falmouth next week, or next year for sure.

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