5:30 p.m., Dec. 10)
Coro Vivo Ottawa celebrates 30 Christmases in one memorable
evening of song
By Fred Sherwin
Vivo Ottawa performed their annual Christmas
concert at the Orleans United Church on the
weekend, and as always, they did not disppoint.
Vivo Ottawa celebrated their 30th Christmas together on
Saturday with their second of two concerts at the Orléans
remarkable, extraordinary, powerful... are all adjectives
that can be used to describe their performance. The chorus
has come a long way since its very first Christmas concert
three decades ago. In fact, they've come along way just
in the last 10 years.
personally can't imagine celebrating the holiday season
without going to see and listen to Coro Vivo's annual
Christmas concert and this year they managed to deliver
a superb performance yet again.
singing an array of Christmas carols both familiar and
not so familiar, the chorus also sang an original composition
by John Gordon Armstrong and Susan McMaster entitled "Gold
and Glory", which they co-wrote to mark the special
the years, the Coro Vivo's holiday concert has become
one of my favourite holiday events. They are without a
doubt one of the most preeminate choruses in the city
and residents in the east are truly blessed to be able
to welcome them back each and every year.
doesn't hurt that the Orleans United Church has amazing
acoustics. Between the chorus and the venue, you couldn't
ask for a better night's entertainment.
48-member ensemble began the evening's program with a
contemporary take on the medieval hymn "O Magnum
Mysterium", followed by a contemporary adaptation
of the Old English carol "Balulalow" by Kingston
composer Mark Seritt.
two songs set the tone beautifully for the "Gold
and Glory" which was commissioned by the chorus to
celebrate their 30th anniversary.
composition with its closing line, "Glory in voices
raised in song", is a wonderful tribute to the group
and its members both past and present, including the late
Lynn Nightingale to whom the evening's performance was
"God and Glory" the audience was invited to
join in the singing of the traditional holiday classic
"O Come, All Ye Faithful".
up on the program was two original contemporary carols
written by Sirett. The first is entitled "If Ye Would
Hear the Angels Sing". And the second was "Thou
Shalt Know Him When He Comes".
audience was then invited to join in singing the popular
French carol "Il est né le divin enfant",
after which the chorus performed London, Ontario composer
Jeff Smallman's arrangment of the traditional French lullaby
"Dors, Dors, Dors".
of the highlights of the evening followed as the chorus
sang a very unique adaptation of "The Twelve Days
of Christmas", arranged by Bob Chilcott, and featuring
soloists Tracy Regnier and Nancy McCaughan.
concert was brought to a close with a medley of Christmas
classics starting with "Wassail", or "Here
we come a-caroling", and running through "Il
est né le divin enfant", "Veni, Veni
Emmanuel", "The Holly and the Ivy", "God
Rest Ye Marry Gentlemen", and "We Wish You A
Although the concert was a little more than an hour long,
it seemed to go by in an instant and just like that, it
Vivo will now take a couple of well-deserved weeks off
before turning their attention to their annual spring
concert to be held on April 24 at St. Joseph's Church
on Laureir Avenue East, where they will be performing
Morten Lauridsen's "Lux Aeterna: Songs of Light".
more information about Coro Vivo visit their website at
story was made possible thanks to the generous support
of our local business partners.)
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