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Four holiday concerts wrap the season in a musical glow

Offerings include the beloved holiday tradition ‘A Festival of Lessons and Carols’

Alice Millar Choir photo by Kelly Norris
Alice Millar Choir photo by Kelly Norris
  • Nov. 30 Chamber Orchestra concert features Frank Bridge’s ‘Christmas Dance’
  • Symphony Orchestra Dec. 2 concert includes Tchaikovsky’s ‘The Seasons’
  • ‘A Festival of Lessons and Carols’ returns to Alice Millar Chapel Dec. 3
  • Choral ensembles close series Dec. 3 with eclectic winter-themed music  

EVANSTON - An assortment of holiday-inspired musical treats performed by choral, brass, orchestral and chamber ensembles will herald the season when Northwestern University’s Henry and Leigh Bienen School of Music presents four holiday concerts Nov. 30 to Dec. 3.

The lineup includes performances by the Northwestern University Chamber Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra and Philharmonia, Bienen Contemporary/Early Vocal Ensemble and University Chorale, as well as the Alice Millar Chapel Choir and Brass Ensemble. All concerts will be presented on the Evanston campus. 

The 2017 holiday concert schedule is as follows:

Northwestern University Chamber Orchestra
Thursday, Nov. 30 at 7:30 p.m.
Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive
Tickets: $6 general; $4 students

The Northwestern University Chamber Orchestra performs Frédéric Chopin’s glittering Piano Concerto No. 1 in E Minor; Johannes Brahms’ masterful Serenade No. 1 in D Major; and Frank Bridge’s “Sir Roger de Coverly”(Christmas Dance), an English and Scottish folk song dating back to 1922. Robert G. Hasty will conduct the performance, featuring pianist Tian Tang.

Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra: Holiday Concert
Saturday, Dec. 2 at 7:30 p.m.
Pick-Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive
Tickets: $8 general; $5 students

The Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra presents a holiday concert featuring David Diamond’s orchestral fantasy “The Enormous Room,” inspired by poet e.e. cummings’ autobiographical novel recounting his World War I imprisonment; Albert Roussel’s alternately vigorous and luminous Suite in F Major; and Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s “The Seasons,” a set of 12 short pieces representing each of the months of the year. In “Troïka,” considered the most challenging of the short works, one can hear the jingling of sleigh-bells. Victor Yampolsky conducts.

“A Festival of Lessons and Carols”
Sunday, Dec. 3 at 10:40 a.m.
Alice Millar Chapel, 1870 Sheridan Road
Free admission; offerings accepted

The Alice Millar Chapel Choir, Northwestern University Philharmonia and Millar Brass Ensemble present “A Festival of Lessons and Carols,” conducted by Stephen Alltop. The performance features carols from medieval to modern for brass, strings, organ and choir, including works by John Joubert, Giovanni Gabrieli, Hans Leo Hassler, Heinrich Schütz, Francis Poulenc and John Tavener.  

Bienen Contemporary/Early Vocal Ensemble and University Chorale
Sunday, Dec. 3 at 7:30 p.m.
Galvin Recital Hall, 70 Arts Circle Drive
Tickets: $8 general; $5 students

The Bienen Contemporary/Early Vocal Ensemble and University Chorale perform a program of winter-themed pieces from yesterday and today, conducted by Donald Nally.   

Tickets are available online at concertsatbienen.org, by phone at 847-467-4000 or at the box office located in the southeast entrance of Pick Staiger Concert Hall, 50 Arts Circle Drive.

Box office hours are Mondays through Fridays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturdays, noon to 3 p.m. Tickets also are available at the ticket counter of each venue 45 minutes before the start of each performance.

For more information about the holiday concerts or Bienen School programs and events, visit concertsatbienen.org.

The Bienen School is a member of the Northwestern Arts Circle, which brings together film, humanities, literary arts, music, theater, dance and visual arts.  

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