Vancouver’s Singing Lions, Chor Leoni, Light Up the Festive Season in
–Christmas with Chor Leoni –
Audiences will be awash in the glow of time-honoured classics and joyous debuts, including a world premiere from Vancouver violinist Cameron Wilson
Vancouver, BC – Chor Leoni presents its seasonal celebration of quiet reflection and jubilant hope with Christmas with Chor Leoni on December 15 at 7:30pm, December 16 at 11am, 2pm & 5pm, and December 18 at 5pm & 8pm at St. Andrew’s-Wesley United (1022 Nelson St). Set to a backdrop of soaring architecture and stunning lighting design, the treasured Yuletide tradition includes a dynamic blend of holiday classics and hopeful winter harmonies, coupled with the world premiere of A Midnight Clear from Vancouver’s genre-defying composer and violinist Cameron Wilson.
“The holidays offer us a reason to gather together in light,” says Erick Lichte, Artistic Director of Chor Leoni. “Sometimes it’s a burst of majestic light that shimmers with merriment for all to enjoy. Other times, it’s a small flicker that offers a spark of warmth and hope in a moment of darkness. It’s our wish that through the sound and spirit of Chor Leoni, together with the enveloping acoustics and stunning setting of St. Andrew’s-Wesley United, audiences will be bathed in the light of the season, and filled with renewed love and hope for the year ahead.”
In addition to beloved Christmas carols such as I Saw Three Ships and Silent Night, Christmas with Chor Leoni will bring audiences on a meditative journey with the world premiere of Cameron Wilson’s Midnight Clear to the promise of new beginnings with the Canadian premiere of Ola Gjeilo’s New Year’s Carol.
Wilson’s Midnight Clear is composed in three sections and scored for Chor Leoni’s 65-voice choir, as well as a rich accompaniment of piano, harp, acoustic guitar, percussion, and violin. The first section, “Mystery,” is sparse, beautiful, and atmospheric, while the second section, “The Message,” is an original tune set to the traditional lyrics of It Came Upon a Midnight Clear. The last section, “Hoedown of Hope” is a lively fiddle reel with choir, bringing the piece to a joyous conclusion.
”For me, the piece is really about hope. Hope for peace despite the ravages of war and hate. Hope for love and faith for a better future for all people. This is a message that resonates with all of us more than ever before,” explains Wilson.
New Year’s Carol was originally commissioned by San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus in 2014. Together with lyricist Anthony Silvestri, Gjeilo ruminated on the cyclical nature of the year – how the end of one season, with gifts opened, candles burned down, friends departed, gives way to the birth of a new season, and the eager anticipation of another year around the sun.
Returning for an encore performance this season is a previous Chor Leoni premiere. A Fantasy of Carols, written by award-winning B.C. composer and Chor Leoni’s 2022 Composer in Residence Don Macdonald, is a celebration of traditional Christmas favourites, such as Ding Dong Merrily on High, What Child is This?, O Holy Night, O Come, O Come Emmanuel, Hark the Herald Angels Sing, and O Come All Ye Faithful. With snippets of these classics woven throughout non-traditional musical settings, this rich and unexpected tapestry builds to a jubilant climax. The work was commissioned by Chor Leoni in 2022.
In addition to Wilson on violin, Chor Leoni will be accompanied by several special musical guests, including harpist Vivian Chen, pianist Tina Chang, and guitarist Keith Sinclair.
For tickets and information, visit chorleoni.org
About Chor Leoni Men’s Choir (chorleoni.org)
Known internationally and loved locally, JUNO-nominated Chor Leoni is recognized as one of the vanguard vocal ensembles in North America. Founded by the late choral luminary Diane Loomer and now led by Artistic Director Erick Lichte, Vancouver’s Singing Lions have enriched and transformed people’s lives through singing for thirty years. With stylistic grace and an adventurous spirit, Chor Leoni performs in many languages, styles and genres, always aiming to communicate, engage, and entertain.
|LISTING INFORMATION ||Chor Leoni presents Christmas with Chor Leoni|
|Dates & Time:||December 15, 2023 at 7:30pm|
December 16, 2023 at 11am, 2pm & 5pm
December 18, 2023 at 5pm & 8pm
|Venue:||St. Andrew-Wesley’s United, 1022 Nelson St., Vancouver|
|Ticket Prices:||Tickets from $20-$75, plus applicable fees|
35 and Under ticket pricing available