IPR Classical's holiday programming continues December 24th with specials that will add joy to your day. (There's more to come on the 25th; we'll post those tomorrow.) Highlights include A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols live from the UK, the Spelman-Morehouse Christmas concert from Atlanta, the wfcsymphony from Cedar Falls, Amahl and the Night Visitors from Des Moines, Christmas at Luther, Doug Brown's classic reading of A Christmas Carol, and more. Here's the complete schedule:
8am-9am: wfcsymphony’s “Family Holiday” concert – so much fun!
9am-11am: Live broadcast of this year’s A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols from King’s College Cambridge - This year - the 74th since the first broadcast in 1930! - they'll interweave lots of outstanding Bach with music by the French mystic Olivier Messiaen and more. Hear it as it happens!
11am- 12noon: Light and Gold: The Music of Eric Whitacre - a special devoted to the American master (although it also includes music by one of his inspirations, Morten Lauridsen). If you haven’t discovered his lovely choral music it's the perfect opportunity.
12noon- 1pm: Christmas at Luther - The 34th annual concert from Luther College in Decorah. This year's concert features performances by six choirs, the Luther Ringers led by college organist Gregory Peterson, the Symphony Orchestra conducted by Daniel Baldwin. and audience singing.
1pm-2pm: The 89th Annual Spelman-Morehouse Christmas Carol Concert - The choirs from two of America’s oldest and most admired African-American colleges join together again for what is always a spine-tingling joy. Recorded at the Martin Luther King Jr. International Chapel at Morehouse College in Atlanta, Ga. Here's a sample from an earlier concert!:
2pm-3pm: Welcome Christmas. From our neighbors to the north, the noted ensemble VocalEssence is led by the great conductor Philip Brunelle in their annual Christmas special.
3PM-4PM: Gian Carlo Menotti, Amahl and the Night Visitors, performed by the Des Moines Metro Opera - The American composer wrote this lovely Christmas opera for radio – but you can hear a live production broadcast from our own Des Moines Metro Opera. It depicts the three Wise Men stopping for shelter at the home of a poor mother and her son, Amahl, and the insights that lead to maturity and healing. Soprano Julie Makerov performs the role of the mother, and middle school boy soprano Pierce Mansfield portrays her son, Amahl. Bass-baritone W. Patrick Blackwell, tenor Edwin Griffith, and baritone Todd Thomas sing the roles of the three kings, Balthazar, Kaspar, and Melchior.
4PM -5PM: In Italia: A Renaissance Christmas from Venice, Naples, Milan, and Beyond - As the Renaissance was bringing forth great art and literature, it also gave rise to some gloriously lovely Chrismtas music - tune in to sample an hour's worth, hosted by Angela Mariani.
7PM: Doug Brown reads A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens– better than a movie! Doug Brown of WOI read Dickens’s timeless tale better than, basically, anyone – if you haven’t heard the original in a while, turn the radio on and prepare to be spellbound.
On Christmas Day, the 25th, we'll be offering more, including a complete concert performance of Handel’s Messiah, concerts from St. Olaf’s, Chanticleer and the Christmas Revels, and more – check back to this site for details tomorrow!