Skip to main content

Music Adds Joy to the Holidays

Bienen School concerts feature classic and contemporary works from Bach to Whitacre

EVANSTON, Ill. --- Celebrate the upcoming holidays or the winter season by attending one or more of the festive concerts at Northwestern University from Dec. 4 through Dec. 9.

Presented by the Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music, the programs will take place on the University’s Evanston campus at Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive or Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Road, as noted.


• Donald Nally conducts the Bienen Contemporary/Early Vocal Ensemble in a concert titled “At Winter’s Edge” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 4, in Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. In this concert, the Bienen School’s newest ensemble will focus on various wintry themes. Repertoire will include settings of the well-known tune “Wie schon leuchtet der Morgenstern” (“How brightly shines the morning star”) by Praetorius and Kile Smith and Bo Holten’s depiction of falling snow in “First Snow.” The program also includes Jonathan Dove’s texturally distinct “Welcome all wonders in one sight”; Poulenc’s “Un soir du neige,” which depicts the frozen atmosphere of war-torn Paris; and Morten Lauridsen’s popular “O magnum mysterium,” given a special rendition by the singers of the ensemble. Tickets are $6 for the general public and $4 for students with a valid ID.

 • Robert G. Hasty conducts orchestral classics during the Northwestern University Chamber Orchestra’s festive concert at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6, inPick-Staiger Concert Hall. The program includes Mozart’s German Dances, Glazunov’s “Winter” from “The Seasons,” Bridge’s “Sir Roger de Coverley: A Christmas Dance” and Hindemith’s Suite from “Tuttifantchen.” Tickets are $6 for the general public and $4 for students with valid ID.

• Two performances of the 73rd Annual Holiday Concert will take place at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8 and 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9, in Pick-Staiger Concert Hall. Under the direction of Donald Nally, the University Chorale and Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra will perform James MacMillan’s “Magnificat” and “Nunc dimittis,” both contemporary settings of the Songs of Mary and Simeon. Also on the program are two choral-orchestral masterpieces, the “Glorias” of Bach and Poulenc. Tickets are $12 for the general public and $6 for students with valid ID.

Alice Millar Chapel hosts “A Festival of Lessons and Carols” at 10:40 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 9. Conducted by Stephen Alltop, the event features performances by the Alice Millar Chapel Choir, Northwestern University Philharmonia, Millar Brass Ensemble and faculty oboist Michael Henoch. This holiday tradition combines readings and musical works to portray the story of Christmas. Ranging from early Baroque to contemporary, the carols for brass, strings, organ and choir include Eric Whitacre’s “Alleluia” as well as works by Bach, Bob Chilcott, Daniel Kallman, Praetorius and Bienen School Nemmers Prize winner Aaron Jay Kernis. Admission is a freewill offering.

For more information, call the Pick-Staiger Concert Office at (847) 491-5441 or visit To order tickets, call the Pick-Staiger Ticket Office at (847) 467-4000 or visit

Editor's Picks

Back to top