(Posted 7:30 a.m., May 8)
dancers shine at regional American Dance Awards event
By Fred Sherwin
Vivo Ottawa performed their annual Christmas
concert in front of a packed house at the
Orleans United Church this past Friday and
Saturday. File photo
spirit of Christmas has been reflected in song the world
over, including compositions from such far flung countries
as Argentina and Ghana.
like "Issay, Issay! (Hear Ye, Hear Ye!)" from
Ethiopia, and the Jamaican carol "Mary's Little Boy
Child" made famous by Harry Belafonte, have become
familiar seasonal jingles in North America. Others, however,
are much more obscure.
Vivo drew upon the international songbook of the holiday
season as inspiration for their annual Christmas concert
held at Orleans United Church last Friday and Saturday.
chorus took their audience on a choral circumnavigation
of the globe during a 90 minute performance that touched
down in Africa, Europe, South America and the Caribbean
before arriving back in Canada.
evening's journey started out in Canada with the French
Canadian song "Le Train d'Hiver", and then quickly
crossed the pond for stops in Sweden, the United Kingdom,
France and Germany before pausing for a brief respite
as the audience joined in the singing of "Hark the
Herald Angels Sing".
trip was quickly "rejoined" with a stop in the
Basque region of Spain which provided the highlight of
the first half of the evening's performance with a trio
of "night" songs: "The Gentle Voice of
the Night", "Give Me This Christmas Night"
and "O Lovely Christmas Star" featuring soloist
Spain the program journeyed to Africa with stops in Ghana,
South Africa and Ethiopia for a rousing performance of
a brief intermission the audience was transported to South
America for stops in Argentina and Venezuela and then
hopped over to the Dominican Republic and Jamaica.
the tradition of past Coro Vivo Christmas concerts, the
younger members of the audience were invited to the front
of the room to join in the singing of "Away In The
Manger". As the song came to a close a special guest
arrived wearing a bright red suit trimmed in white fur.
Santa arrived just in time to give his greetings and hand
out treats for the kids.
concert then came full circle with a medley of more familiar
holiday compositions such as "Sleigh Ride" and
"Jingle Bells" featuring soloists Maxime Passer
and Kevin Russell.
church provided a perfect setting for the concert thanks
to the room's amazing acoustics as the final Hallelujah
in "Laudate Dominum" would attest. The concert
was brought to a close with "Christmas Joy"
, a feeling shared by every member of the audience.
in all, it was another wonderful performance by one of
Ottawa's premiere choruses which can trace its roots back
to Blackburn Hamlet where the group was first formed in
chorus was accompanied on piano by their resident pianist
Louise Léveillé who was ably joined in the
music pit by guest instrumentalists Alex MacFarlane on
percussion and Philippe Charbonneau on double bass.
Vivo's next public performance will be this spring when
they will celebrate the folk traditions of the British
Isles andthe Canadian Maritimes in a choral concert with
Celtic origins. For more information visit www.corovivoottawa.ca.
was made possible thanks to the generous support of our local
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