‘Tis the Season for Christmas Music


ETV News Stock Photo by Jeff Barrett

By Elizabeth Bryner

December begins with a host of musical offerings in Castle County. On Thursday, Dec. 1, USU Combined Choirs, under the direction of choral director Larry Martin, will be presenting “Festival of Carols” at 7:30 p.m. in the Geary Event Center.

Choral selections include perennial favorites like “Coventry Carol” and a sampling of timeless melodies in “A Wreath of Carols.” Singers will also present the sublime, dulcet tones within Eric Whitacre’s “Glow” and a song of hope by the Indigo Girls, “There’s Still My Joy.”

The program will also include the glorious masterpiece, “Angels from the Realms of Glory,” and the more subdued “Lullaby for a King.” An early American hymn, “Star in the East,” features the distinctive sounds of the shape-note choral tradition, influenced by the bagpipes of the Scottish Isles. The choirs will also present “When Stars Shone Down,” “Sleigh Bells” and will finish with John Rutter’s “The Lord Bless You and Keep You.”

Just three days later, on Sunday, Dec. 4, the Castle Valley Choir and Orchestra will be resuming its traditional performance of selections from Handel’s “Messiah.” Orchestra members, soloists and choir members have been rehearsing for months to bring this time-honored tradition back to Castle Country.

Handel’s “Messiah” has been performed annually since at least 1950 under the baton of many talented conductors. The performance in 2019 marked its 70th year, but regrettably, came to a halt in 2020 and 2021. However, this year, the tradition resumes in its 71st year. If you have not yet attended, you have been missing out on one of Castle Country’s great traditions.

The performance is free of charge and will be held in the Carbon High School Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. Babies and children under six are discouraged from attending.

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