GREENVILLE, Pa.—Thiel College celebrates its 63rd year of ringing in the holiday season with the Thiel College Christmas Festival at 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 6 at the William A. Passavant Center. The festival is free and open to the public.
Performing at this year’s festival, entitled “It Came Upon the Midnight Clear,” are the Thiel Choir, Chamber Singers and Handbell Ringers. Michael Bray, D.M.A., directs the ensembles with accompaniment performed by Kathryn A. Gray, M.M. Prelude music will begin at 3:45 p.m.
“This is my 20th Christmas Festival at Thiel College. It is magical to see the hard work and preparation become a magnificent presentation as we celebrate the wondrous mystery of the incarnation,” Bray said. “For many Greenville residents, the Festival is the beginning of the Christmas season. What Dr. Marlowe Johnson began in 1953, has continued now for 63 years.”
The program will feature works by Carrillo, Buxtehude, Bach, Hovland, Mathias, Helvey, Menotti, and choral and handbell works from Venezuela, England and Germany. Continuing the College’s tradition, the audience will be invited to sing along with the choirs during seasonal carols and hymns.
About the Thiel College Christmas Festival
The Christmas Festival has been presented at 4 p.m. on the first Sunday in December since the founding of the Thiel Choir in 1953 by Dr. Marlowe Johnson. Initially, the festivals were held in the Rissell Gymnasium with concert backdrops created and decorated by Choir members. In 1973, the festival moved to the William A. Passavant Center, and Choir members continue to create the sets for each year themselves.
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