BRUNSWICK — The Oratorio Chorale, directed by Peter Frewen, opens its 36th season with a festive welcome to Advent and Yuletide on Saturday, Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m. at the United Church of Christ, Congress Avenue in Bath, and on Sunday, Nov. 22 at 3 p.m. at Sacred Heart Church, Main Street, Yarmouth.

Director Peter Frewen notes that the program “anticipates the holidays with the fresh sounds of music not frequently heard.” Featured works include Ringeltänze by Libby Larsen, a cycle of Christmas Carol ring dances for chorus and hand bell choir that mimics the festive atmosphere of Christmas revelers and bell ringing; Ceremony of Carols for chorus and solo harp, in which composer Benjamin Britten uses elegantly simple melody and harmony to reflect on the spiritual mysteries of Christmas.

The program is rounded out by Gerald Finzi’s Magnificat; Dominick Argento Gloria from The Masque of Angels for organ and chorus: Lux Aeterna from the Enigma Variations by Edward Elgar; and “Kyrie” and “Dona nobis pacem” from J. S. Bach, Mass in b-minor.

For this concert, the Chorale will be joined by the Maine Chamber Ensemble and guest artists Ray Cornils, Municipal Organist for the City of Portland and Minister of Music at First Parish Church in Brunswick; The Parish Ringers, famed hand bell choir directed by Cornils; and Jara Goodrich, principal harpist for the Portland Symphony Orchestra and the Bangor Symphony Orchestra.

Tickets are $20 in advance, $25 at the door, students half price, under 12 free. Individual tickets may be purchased from members of the Chorale or at Gulf of Maine Books in Brunswick; Now You’re Cooking and Magnolia’s in Bath; Sherman’s Books and Stationery in Freeport; Clayton’s in Yarmouth; Maine Coast books in Damariscotta; Treats in Wiscasset; and Starbird Music and Longfellow Books in Portland.

For more information on this concert and the 2009-2010 season, visit www.oratoriochorale.org/ or call 207-725-1420.


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