Tonight in Legacy Hall, Cantus Columbus will present their nineteenth annual Christmas concert. The professional chorus, under the direction of Dr. William J. Bullock, will collaborate with Axiom Brass quintet from Chicago to present a Christmas concert that historically sells out. The choir will be accompanied by organist Aesook Moon and pianist Janie Lee Bullock.
Subtitled "Message of the Season - Music of the Masters" the concert features classical compositions by master composers interspersed with familiar carols sung with the audience. Axiom Brass will perform contemporary arrangements of popular carols, and be joined by the chorus on a few of them. Moon and Bullock will each perform solo works in addition to the collaborative pieces included on the program.
Bullock is thrilled to present Cantus Christmas 2018.
"Our concert relates the Christmas story in four sections: Advent & Preparation, Birth & Infancy, Epiphany & Adoration, and Departure & Aspiration," explained Bullock.
Tonight's concert repertoire is wide ranging. Audience members can expect to hear everything from African-American Spirituals to Russian folk songs. Christmas music from all over the world will be performed including works originating in Russia, France, England, Germany and America.
In addition to the musical experience, Bullock has provided the audience with detailed program notes that review each work’s background and musical or poetic relevance to the story. After nineteen years of performances, Cantus Christmas has become a tradition for many local families - largely in part because of Bullock's dedication to providing an experience that touches hearts and minds. His program notes are known to add a particularly effective element to his concerts as they educate the listener on exactly what they will hear and how each composition relates to the greater narrative of the Christmas message.
Tonight's concert is a ninety-minute program presented without intermission and uninterrupted by applause. This no applause tradition was established by Bullock in honor Robert Shaw (1916–1999), the man whose work inspired this concert series so many years ago.
In a recent correspondence, Bullock shared the history behind this custom he's chosen to adapt for Cantus Columbus over the past nineteen years:
"With no studio audience present for the annual midnight Christmas Eve broadcast of Shaw’s Collegiate Chorale and the CBS Symphony, there was no applause and no intermission. Shaw found he liked the way the story unfolded as each number lead directly into the next, so he continued the practice at his Christmas concerts (in Cleveland and Atlanta) for the rest of his life."
-William Bullock on Robert Shaw
Although tonight's concert is likely to sell out, a few tickets might still be available. We'd suggest calling the RiverCenter Box Office at 706-256-3612 to inquire.
This beautiful holiday tradition is the perfect way to receive the true message of the season. Don’t miss the opportunity to embrace a concert experience unlike any other in our area. It's a tradition, but believe us when we say it is much, much more. ◼︎