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Public Invited to Begin the Christmas Season with Catawba’s Service of Lessons & Carols

November 04, 2016

Category: Events, Music


lessonscarols-horiz.jpgMembers of the general public are invited to begin their Christmas season by attending Catawba College’s 29th annual Service of Lessons and Carols.  The public can attend the service in the beautifully decorated Omwake-Dearborn Chapel on two different evenings – Monday, November 28 and Thursday, December 1.

Tickets for both services are free to the public, but required for all who plan to attend.  Requests are limited to up to four tickets per individual. Tickets can be reserved through the Catawba College Development Office by calling (704) 637-4396.

Beginning Monday, Nov. 14, tickets will be available for pick-up in the Development Office between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday or at a will call table in the narthex of the Chapel on the nights of the service. Note that the College will be closed for the Thanksgiving holiday beginning at noon on Nov. 23 through Nov. 25, and will reopen Nov. 28.

The Service of Lessons and Carols is based on the historic ritual that originated at King’s College in Cambridge, England.  It weaves beautiful carols of the season with scriptures or lessons relating to the story of Christmas from the prophecies to the mystery of the Holy Trinity.

Prelude music from the Catawba Chamber Brass, under the direction of Dr. Steve Etters, and organ music offered by Mr. Matthew Brown, organist and choirmaster at First United Methodist Church in Salisbury, will begin at 6:30 p.m. each evening.  The prelude will mix traditional and contemporary music of the season.

The service begins at 7 p.m. each evening and will commence with Paul Manz’s setting of “E’en So Lord Jesus Quickly Come,” followed by the congregational singing of “Once in Royal David’s City.”  The Service will include choral selections from the Catawba Singers, the Chamber Singers, PopAC, and Men’s and Women’s Ensembles that will complement the readings from the Holy Scripture. The congregation will join in the singing of traditional hymns and seasonal carols.

Works by John Rutter and Dan Forrest will play prominent roles in the evening’s selections.  Handel’s “Messiah” will be featured with the selection “And the Glory of the Lord.”  Catawba’s Chamber Choir will offer a jubilant setting of the traditional French carol, “Pat-a-Pan,” while PopAc will set a pensive mood with the Pentatonix setting of “Mary, Did You Know?” as well as “Breath of Heaven,” made famous by Christian artist Amy Grant. Two rousing selections taken from the Gospel tradition, “Children Go Where I Send Thee” and “In the Beginning,” will be offered by the Catawba Singers.

Dr. Phillip Burgess, Catawba’s director of choral activities and assistant professor of Music, will be the principal conductor of the singers’ musical selections.  Dr. Ken W. Clapp, College chaplain and senior vice president, will serve as worship leader.

Shuttle service to the Omwake-Dearborn Chapel will be offered beginning at 5:30 p.m. each evening from the Robertson College-Community Center and Shuford Stadium parking lots on campus.  After the service, the shuttle will also be available to return guests to their vehicles.