A night of lights and song
Christine Grimard and Erika Sherk
Northern News Services
One concert highlight was O Holy Night, a duet by Shawn Mattas and co-director Shad Turner. Turner had arranged the duet specifically for himself and Mattas.
"It's one of my favourite carols," said Turner after the concert. "I had arranged it a few years back but it's the first time we've sung it in public."
Part of the program included sing-along carols, such as O Come All Ye Faithful, Good King Wenceslas and The Christmas Song.
For Silent Night, everyone did their best at singing the song in English, French and German.
The kids in the audience also got involved, providing an enthusiastic, if not completely rhythmic, percussion section for Jingle Bells.
Nightingale, the emcee, encouraged audience participation and kept spirits bright. In one misunderstanding with a young volunteer, she said the shy boy play the bells from wherever he wanted to, if he couldn't come to the front.
Major Bob Mac Kenzie of the Salvation Army took a turn at directing Silver Bells, explaining to the audience that the song was written after the Salvation Army's Christmas bell-ringing campaign.
Margaret Marshall, who has been in the choir since 1983, said singing in the choir helps boost her Christmas spirit.
"It's very special, the Christmas music, and to be able to make music with others," she said.
Turner summed up the general feeling at the end of the concert.
"I feel so Christmassy, like the feeling has finally started," said Turner.
Nightingale said of the variety of the program,"The range of serious to silly was good." Music also included religious classics such as God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen and the popular hit Sleigh Ride.