Singing their way into the holidays

PLATTSBURGH - Every year for the past seven years, the Cumberland Bay Barbershoppers and the Champlain Valley Sweet Adelines have put together a holiday concert to get people into the spirit of the season. This year is no exception.

St. Peter's Church, located at 114 Cornelia St., will be home to a free concert this Sunday, Dec. 7, at 2 p.m.

The original idea for this event began when Dianne Tortorelli-Brooks, formerly the director of the Champlain Valley Sweet Adelines and the current director of the Cumberland Bay Barbershoppers, felt it would be good for the community.

"The community supports us and always turns out for every activity that we have and we do, and we do a holiday concert as a thank you to them; free of charge," said Tortorelli-Brooks.

This year, the Cumberland Bay Barbershoppers concert will also feature the Champlain Valley Sweet Adelines, along with three quartets, all made up of members of the Barbershoppers and Sweet Adelines. They include the Meter Maids Quartet, Philharmonix Quartet, and 4 Pleasure Quartet.

"It just brings a little variety to the concert," Tortorelli-Brooks explained.

From songs such as "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas," "Jingle Bells," and "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer," the concert will feature many songs people know and love.

"It's very festive, but still simple," said Tortorelli-Brooks.

There will also be some fun songs added to the playlist, including ones from Alvin and the Chipmunks and Snoopy's Christmas.

Including the audience, Tortorelli-Brooks added, is also important to the concert.

"We just kind of interact with the audience," she explained. "And do some sing-a-longs, with songs they like to sing."

However, there will also be at least one song, with which some people may be unfamiliar.

"One of the songs we'll sing is called 'Bring Him Home,'" said Tortorelli-Brooks. "It relates to the servicemen and women. And that's just a very touching, very warm song. It's very appropriate."

At a busy time of the year, Tortorelli-Brooks feels the concert is a way to enjoy the holidays.

"It's kind of nice. A nice day to go to church then relax," she said. "It's kind of a light afternoon. Then, the hustle-bustle begins."

Weather cancellation will be announced on WIRY 1340AM. The snow date will be Sunday, Dec. 14, at 2 p.m., also at St. Peter's Church.

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