Choral society kicks off 50th anniversary with holiday concert

TAYLOR MURCHISON-GALLAGHER

STAFF WRITER

The Plainville Choral Society will officially kick of a year’s worth of celebrations on Friday, Dec. 13, in honor of their 50th anniversary. The winter concert, entitled “As in Olden Days,” has been designed to get the community into the holiday spirit.

PCS member and the group’s media specialist Eileen Glancy said that the group wanted to make the performance “something that is going to be familiar to everyone, and something that would invoke a lot of memories.”

“This year, because it’s the 50th anniversary, we want everybody to just really feel the spirit of the holiday,” said Glancy.

For the past three years PCS has been under the musical direction of Greg Wilfrid, a Hart School of Music graduate and current music teacher at Louis Toffolon Elementary School. Being accepted into the position, he said, was exciting because he knew this group has been “a super important” part of the community and a “point of pride” in Plainville for the past half century.

“It’s a really cool kind of amalgamation of people who are super excited,” said Wilfrid, “who have been here since the beginning to see it flourish to this point, people who have come in at some point and or have left and come back, or people who are just coming in kind of like me – I kind of include myself in the folks who are a part of the more recent history—but are super excited to do this.”

According to the director, when a member says that they want to perform “traditional Christmas favorites,” it can mean many things, from traditional hymns to Bing Crosby. The “As in Olden Days,” theme was chosen as a way to shore together the many meanings of traditional Christmas music.

The group will be performing many classic Christmas songs such as “Frosty the Snowman,” and “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer,” but audience members will notice that the arrangements will be different. PCS will also be performing the songs “Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” “Silent Night,” “Here We Come A-Wassailing,” “Sleigh Ride,” “O Holy Night,” and many more. And in the tradition of the PCS Christmas performance, the audience will be invited up at the conclusion of the program to sing “The Hallelujah Chorus” with the group.

According to Glancy, this year’s performance will be co-produced by Michele Q. Ouellette and Michael A. Fox. Ouellette is in her second year with PCS, and Fox has been a member since 1998.

In a release from the group, Ouellette said the audience “will be entertained by the incredible voices and selection of music that will not just bring a smile to their faces, but hopefully, an outpouring of joy that will last throughout the year.”

“O Holy Night is not only a favorite of mine, but I believe it best captures the essence of the meaning of Christmas—the stillness, the peace, the event that was occurring for all the world to see,” said Fox in a release.

Performances will be held at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church at 355 Camp St. in Bristol, at 7:30 p.m., on Friday, Dec. 13 and Saturday, Dec. 14 with a snow date of Sunday, Dec. 15, at 2 p.m.

Advance tickets are $12 ($15 at the door). Tickets are $5 for children 12 and under. Tickets may be purchased from any PCS member or any of these ticket outlets: Saint’s Restaurant at 1248 Queen St. in Southington; Dancingly Yours at 125 East St. in Plainville; Family Barber Shop at 122 East St. in Plainville; and the Plainville Senior Center at 200 East St. in Plainville.

Tickets can also be purchased online at www.pcsmusic.net. For additional information, contact Fox at (860) 477-8000.

To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Taylor Murchison-Gallagher, email her at TMurchison@PlainvilleObserver.com.