Preparatory Choirs to Present Christmas Concert

Oklahoma Baptist University's Music Preparatory Department choirs (Young Singers of Central Oklahoma) will present a Christmas Concert on Sunday, Dec. 6, at 3 p.m. in Raley Chapel's Potter Auditorium. More than 100 children will be featured in the program which spotlights the Discovery Singers, Shawnee Honor Choir, Concert Choir and Youth Chorale. The concert is free and open to the public.

This is the ninth year the choirs will present a joint Christmas concert, said Conchita Hansford, director of the Preparatory Department and OBU assistant professor of music. The Preparatory Department is part of OBU's Warren M. Angell College of Fine Arts.

Each choir will perform selected Christmas pieces. A highlight of the program will include "Night of Silence" which is a partner song with "Silent Night" and will be performed by the combined choirs. Joint choirs will close the program with a traditional round, "Merry Christmas to You All."

The Discovery Singers will open the program under the direction of Dr. Casey Gerber, OBU assistant professor of music education. This choir is open to any student beginning second grade and focuses on building vocal technique and music literacy. Sarah Bailey, a senior from Noble, Okla., serves as student conductor.

In its 27th year, Shawnee Honor Choir is an auditioned group of fourth through seventh graders from Shawnee and the surrounding area. The group is directed by Hansford. Students represent 18 schools from Midwest City to Seminole. The children study and perform a wide variety of music ranging from simple unison songs to the more challenging two- and three-part choral treble literature. Dephanie Lilite serves the choir as accompanist. Student assistants include Elizabeth Polston, a junior from Broken Arrow, Okla., and Micah Reinhart, a junior from Mooreland, Okla.

The Concert Choir, also under the direction of Gerber, is an auditioned treble choir of seventh through ninth graders from the Shawnee area. This choir provides singing experiences that increase individual musicianship and enhance personal growth and development. The choir is dedicated to the philosophy that the performance of quality choral literature can provide a source of joy and enrichment for the individual and for the community. It also serves as a laboratory choir for OBU music education majors. Janelle Rominger serves as accompanist. Student conductors include OBU music education majors Meghan Loyd, a junior from Fort Smith, Ark., and Sarah Graham, a junior from Ponca City, Okla.

The Youth Chorale is offered to students in grades 10-12, as well as junior high boys with changed voices. This ensemble of select students is designed to provide opportunity for singing experiences that enhance both personal and musical growth. The choir is conducted by Dr. Christy Talbott, OBU assistant professor of theory and conductor of the Bisonette Glee Club, and is accompanied by Janelle Rominger. Student assistants are Andre Jones, a freshman from Lawton, Okla.; Elizabeth Youngblood, a freshman from Midwest City, Okla.; and Colin Metcalf, a freshman from Jenks, Okla.

For more information about the concert or about the OBU Preparatory Department, call Hansford at (405) 878-2273.