Guilford choir brings holiday cheer

On Sunday, Dec. 8, the Guilford College Choir, Lumina Treble Ensemble and the Guilford Youth Choir were truly in the holiday spirit. An event in the Carnegie Room from 6-7 p.m. involved joyous singing, intriguing storytelling and lots of Christmas cheer.

The lights were bright inside the Carnegie Room, and at the start of the event the seats were already becoming packed. Programs were handed out upon entrance for attendees to read along to the lyrics of the songs. Due to the large turnout, people also filed in the back, standing during the full hour of the program.

To open, the Guilford Youth Chorus stepped forward and began singing “O Come, Little Children.” Director of Friends Center and Quaker Studies Wess Daniels then welcomed everyone to the event and thanked them for coming.

Soon after, two other choirs walked in while singing “O Come, O Come Emmanuel.” Since this was a collaboration with the Friends Center, all of the songs were very religious Christmas songs.

“I came here in 2003, and they had been doing an annual holiday concert even before I came here,” said Associate Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities Wendy Looker. “But, it was only a couple of years ago that we decided to collab with the Friends Center. In the spring semester, we will be incorporating more multicultural music and experience different kinds of music.”

As the two choirs blended their music together with the first choir, the voices echoed in harmony. Looker encouraged everyone to join in singing, and some audience members looked to the brochure to sing along.

Once the song concluded, Lily Daniels and Aidana Abdo-Lenta stepped up for the first reading of the night.

Seven readings and seven songs later, concluding with “The First Nowell” which most sang along to, all attendees filed outside. Candles were passed around to be lit, and Wess Daniels led the group on a walk from Dana to the Orangerie with the lights lit while singing Silent Night.

Some attendees saw the event as a fun way to see carolers in a concert, rather than at their door. Members of the choir were excited to participate.

“I’m a music major and I’ve been trying to be in the choir all four years,” said senior Phillip Williams, a tenor in the Guilford College Choir. “This is the only year I could do it. Overall I think it went well, and I hope to do more in the future before I graduate.”

Precious McKoy, a staff developer in marketing, shared that her daughter was also a part of the Guilford Youth Chorus, and she wanted to surprise her by singing alongside in the Lumina Treble Ensemble.

“My favorite part was hearing the chorus sing––I liked all the pieces,” said McKoy. “Events like this are important to be held at Guilford College because it’s a great opportunity for the campus to come together and lift everyone’s spirits near the holidays.”