Colleges celebrate season with holiday concerts

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November 13, 2012

The College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University will present the traditional "Christmas at Saint John's" concerts at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30, and 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, in the Great Hall on the Saint John's campus.

The "Celebrating the Season" holiday concert will be held at 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, at the Basilica of Saint Mary in Minneapolis.

Ticket prices for the two concerts at Saint John's are $13 for adults and $8 for students, employees at CSB and SJU and seniors. Ticket prices for the Basilica concert are $18 for adults and $13 for seniors.

Tickets are available online at or through the Benedicta Arts Center ticket office at 320-363-5777. Because these events have historically sold out, purchasing advance tickets is strongly encouraged.

In the Christmas spirit, there will be a Toys for Tots collection before the two "Christmas at Saint John's" concerts in the Great Hall at SJU. Please bring a new, unwrapped toy for one of the many needy children in central Minnesota.

Performing groups include the Amadeus Chamber Symphony, directed by Axel Theimer; CSB/SJU Brass Choir, directed by Dale White; CSB Women's Choir, directed by Brenda Handel-Johnson; CSB/SJU Chamber Choir, directed by Theimer; the Gregorian Chant Schola, directed by the Rev. Anthony Ruff, OSB; the St. John's Boys' Choir, directed by André Heywood; and SJU Men's Chorus, directed by Theimer.

This year's program features music by Felix Mendelssohn, J.S. Bach, Giovanni Gabrieli, George F. Handel, Marc Antoine Charpentier, Richard Strauss, Max Reger, Benjamin Britten, Bob Chilcott and others.

Throughout the concert, the audience will be invited to join all the choirs and orchestra in singing a number of favorite Christmas carols such as "O Come All Ye Faithful," "Stille Nacht," "Lo, How a Rose," and others. Other favorites include "Personent Hodie," "Glory of the Father" and Handel's "Alleluia Chorus."