Buffalo Valley Singers and the Buffalo Valley Brass will perform a concert entitled “The Glory of Christmas” on Saturday, December 17, at 7:30 PM and Sunday, December 18, at 3 PM at St. John’s United Church of Christ, 1050 Buffalo Rd., Lewisburg. The concert will feature John Rutter’s “Gloria” with orchestral accompaniment in addition to traditional carols and popular songs, such as “Sleigh Ride”, “Christmas Time is Here,” and “Because It’s Christmas”.
For the 26th year, the Buffalo Valley Brass quintet will play popular Christmas songs on their own as well as accompanying the choir with Rutter’s “Gloria” and a medley of carols. Founded in 1982, the Brass members are Judy Blee and David Heberlig on trumpet, Karen Mansfield on french horn, Tom Mecouch on trombone, and John Letteer on tuba. The Buffalo Valley Brass has performed at many local venues, as well as at the White House.
John Rutter, who was born in London in 1945, is a well-known choral director and composer who founded the Cambridge Singers. He directed the first performance of his commissioned concert work “Gloria” in Omaha, NE, on his first trip to the U.S. in 1974. For the Latin text from the Ordinary of the Mass, Rutter chose a Gregorian chant setting in three symphonic-type movements, which are alternately exalted, softly devotional and jubilant in mood. The accompaniment is for brass ensemble with timpani, percussion and organ.
Accompanists for this concert’s performance of “Gloria” include three members of the Williamsport Symphony Orchestra – Dale Orris and David Bailey on trumpet, and Clara Conrad on bass trombone. Buffalo Brass members David Heberlig, Tom Mecouch, John Letteer and Judy Blee on the organ. Nathan Sloyer (trumpet), Kevin Henry (trombone), and Fred Lawrence and Jim Shade (percussion and timpani) round out the orchestra.
Also in the repertoire will be: “What Sweeter Music” and “Angels’ Carol” by John Rutter, and “A Christmas Portrait” (a medley including “It’s Beginning to Look Like Christmas”, The Christmas Song” and “We Need a Little Christmas”) arranged by Jerry Nowak.
Admission is $10 at the door or tickets from group members – children 12 and under are free.