Christmas Cantata: The tradition continues
Newberg and a half-dozen other towns in Yamhill County will see the return of the Community Christmas Cantata in December.
The 36th season of the one-hour event, titled "Born Is the King: It's Christmas," features vocal and musical arrangements staged by solo performers, choruses and an orchestra. This year's performance was arranged and orchestrated by Luke Gambill and Sue Smith and "blends narration with a collection of Christmas music in contemporary and traditional styles," according to a release.
The production will feature more than 45 participants, including a 25-member, five-part, cross-generational choir, a youth chorus, an American Sign Language choir and a narrator. Musicians will range from piano to percussion, from bass and guitar to flute and clarinet. The performance will feature a number of soloists and all participants are volunteers who pay for their own materials.
"Many faith traditions are represented from several counties and two states," the release said. "Since 1987, this group has assembled annually in early October solely for the purpose of preparing the Christmas cantata."
Lee Schrepel, former choir leader at Joyful Servant Lutheran Church in Newberg and Trinity Lutheran Church in McMinnville, has directed the group since 1990.
Rehearsals will continue until the first performance, slated for 7 p.m. Dec. 2 at First Presbyterian Church in McMinnville. A single performance is slated for Newberg this year at 3 p.m. Dec. 17 at Joyful Servant Lutheran Church, 1716 N. Villa Road.
Additional performances include 4 p.m. Dec. 4 at Amity Christian Church, 7 p.m. Dec. 8 at Yamhill Christian Church, 7 p.m. Dec. 10 at St. Barnabas Episcopal Church in McMinnville, 5 p.m. Dec. 11 at Seventh-day Adventist Church in McMinnville, 7 p.m. Dec. 16 at First Baptist Church in Dayton and 7 p.m. Dec. 20 at St. James Catholic Church in McMinnville.
The performance is appropriate and designed to appeal to all ages. For more information, call 503-662-3926 or 503-939-1562, visit the choir's website at CantataChoir.org or email Schrepel at 503-939-1562
Free offerings will be accepted at each performance and benefit the Yamhill County Food Bank, which has seen more than $234,000 generated over the past 18 years by the cantata's performances.
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