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Sweet sounds of the season

MIDDLEBURYIn the spirit of the Thanksgiving-Christmas-Chunnuka holiday season, Middlebury College is offering a festive calendar of events and activities open to the public over the next few weeks. On Sunday, Nov. 18, at 3 p.m. in Mead Chapel, the Middlebury College Community Chorus will perform a program titled Simple Gifts: A Thanksgiving Celebration. The chorus is conducted by Jeff Rehbach, now in his 8th season leading the group, accompanied by George Matthew, Jr., who also serves as carillonneur of Middlebury College. The Thanksgiving program centers on the theme of a popular Shaker song that was originally composed in 1848 by Joseph Brackett while living in Alfred, Maine. The chorus will perform different arrangements, including those by American composer Aaron Copland, and feature two contrasting versions of Now Thank We one by Baroque composer Johann Pachelbel and the other by contemporary British composer Bob Chilcott. The program will also feature American poems including Robert Frosts The Road Not Taken from Randall Thompsons Frostiana. The Middlebury College Community Chorus dates back to the mid-19th century. Today, the chorus is open to all interested singers, including students, alumni, faculty and staff. It includes members from several area towns. This event is free and open to the public. More information is available at 802-443-3168 or www.middlebury.edu/arts. On Saturday, Dec. 1, the Middlebury College Choir will perform Wintersongs Music of Light and Hope at 8 p.m. in the Mahaney Center for the Arts Concert Hall. Middlebury College Assistant Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities Jeff Buettner leads this musical celebration of light in winter that includes Let Thy Hand Be Strengthened by G.F. Handel, works by Ola Gjeilo, Sergei Rachmanninoff, Heitor Villa-Lobos, Moses Hogan, and American and Celtic folk song. The event is free and open to the public. More information is available at 802-443-3168 or www.middlebury.edu/arts. On Sunday, Dec. 2, acclaimed organist Paul Jacobs returns to Middlebury College for a performance at 3 p.m. in Mead Chapel. A reviewer for the American Organist wrote in 2007, Paul Jacobs, with a rigorous slate of concerts in addition to his work as chairman of Juilliards organ department, has become one of the most prominent organists in the United States. Jacobs brings Mead Chapels powerful Gress-Miles organ to life again this year. His program will feature John Weaver, J. S. Bach, Louis Vierne and Julius Reubke. Tickets are $15 for general admission and $12 for seniors. Tickets and information are available at 802-443-6433 or www.middlebury.edu/arts. On Sunday, Dec. 9, the Middlebury College Chamber Singers present two performances of Lessons and Carols for Advent and Christmas at 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. in Mead Chapel. This traditional program combines choral music, congregational singing, and biblical texts of the season and features Middlebury College Chaplain Laurel Jordan; Middlebury College Assistant Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities Jeff Buettner; and Middlebury College Professor Emeritus of Music and College Organist Emory Fanning. The event is free and open to the public. More information is available at 802-443-3168 or www.middlebury.edu/arts.

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