Under the direction of Daniel Monek, director of choral and vocal activities at Marietta College, the student musicians of the Marietta College Concert Choir will once again bring a holiday tradition to the residents of the Mid-Ohio Valley.
What began in 2009 has become an annual tradition, drawing crowds each year to St. Mary Catholic Church, according to president of the choir, Melinda Morgan, a junior music education major from Zanesville.
"The community really looks forward to the concert and it's also one of the best ways for the students to unwind after finals and start to enjoy the holidays," she said.
The concert will be held at 8 p.m. Saturday.
The mixed choir is made up of about 35 men and women in all fields of study, not just music.
"It is an audition group but that's one of the great things about the choir is that it is open to all majors," Morgan said.
If you go
What: Christmas with the Marietta College Concert Choir.
When: 8 p.m. Saturday.
Where: St. Mary Catholic Church, 506 Fourth St., Marietta.
Cost: free and open to the public.
The performance will be a mixture of sacred music and traditional carols, during which the audience will be invited to participate. The performance should run roughly an hour and a half and there will be approximately 20 songs.
There will also be a candle lighting at the end of the performance as "Silent Night" is played, according to Pamela Gordon, with the Edward E. MacTaggart Department of Music.
"It is usually just a wonderful evening and we are so lucky that (St. Mary Catholic Church) lets us use such a gorgeous venue," Gordon said.
The student musicians hold a fundraiser each February to raise money, according to Morgan, which allows them to bring in an orchestra of professional musicians to accompany the choir.
This year the musicians hail from mostly Ohio and West Virginia, Gordon said.
For senior Olivia Wilson, Saturday evening's holiday concert will be bittersweet as it will be her last.
"I'm sad that it's coming to an end but I am really looking forward to the concert," said the soprano. "The music is very intricate and enjoyable to sing."
Wilson said the concert is always well attended and well received and folks usually arrive early to find a seat.
"It's a fabulous way to kick off the holiday season and it really is a family event," she said.