Choir interprets holiday in ‘A Child is Born’

by Melinda Sanchez
Arts & Entertainment Editor

When the rest of the school is bustling with night classes, and horns honk in the rush of finding a parking space, there is a pure angelic sound that flows from the University of La Verne Chapel.

A group on campus that is not recognized for all its hard work is the choir. Divided into two, the University Choir and the Chamber Singers, the groups as a whole have worked hard to tune their voices and perfect the sound of music.

Each year, the two groups come together to perform a Christmas Concert, consisting of traditional carols, and some not so traditional carols. This year the performance will include favorites like, “O Come, All Ye Faithful,” “Ding Dong! Merrily on High,” and “O Holy Night.”

Kim Reed, sophomore, said “‘The Shepherd’s Farewell’ is one of my favorite pieces that we will be performing, because it has such a good variety of music throughout, and it has a pure and rich sound.”

According to Reed, Shawn Kirchner, director of the choral program, chooses the songs that the choir will perform. Kirchner is also the conductor of Friday’s program, accompanied by Timothy Durkovic on piano and organ.

“I have been quite impressed with the pieces he has chosen thus far, and we all seem to enjoy performing them as well,” Reed said.

Brian Wichert, junior, said, “He [Kirchner] consistently has a good variety and choices of tunes. He doesn’t pick lemons.”

Joshua Keys, junior, said that Kirchner “has a lot of enthusiasm and it is contagious, you can’t avoid getting into the music.”

Reed said, “I think we will do well and we’re really confident. It’s challenging music, but we’ve been doing really well.”

Jeremy Collins, senior, has been in choir for four years and said he is looking forward to an amazing show. He said that his commitment to the choir is partially because Kirchner “has a unique ability to teach all ranges of singing ability in students.” His favorite piece is also “The Shepherd’s Farewell,” written by Hector Berlioz. Collins said that he enjoys Berlioz’s musical style.

Collins also mentioned that he enjoys singing, even just for practice, “because it is energizing and therapeutic.”

The choirs have been practicing for the Christmas Concert every Tuesday since mid-October, and according to Reed they have evolved into “an experienced and cohesive choir that might impress [the audience].”

The concert, entitled “A Child is Born,” is tonight at 7:30 at the Church of the Brethren. Admission is free and all students, faculty, staff, and La Verne community members are welcome.

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