2010’s

Concerts History


Saturday, April 21, 2018
The Creation: Joseph Haydn
Our annual Spring full-evening oratorio extravaganza! A favorite with our audiences. In choruses, arias, and ensembles, Haydn tells the story of the first six days of creation in joyful, reverential music, combining gentle humor and child-like naiveté with profound nobility of expression. The Heavens are Telling the Glory of God.
Featuring: The Festival Orchestra and vocal soloists from Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Program
Knox United Church, 506 – 4 Street SW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, March 3, 2018
Songs of Innocence
We see the world through the eyes of children in selections by classical composers – Brahms, Mozart, Beethoven, and Copland. We cross over to pop and jazz-inflected works by John Rutter, and classics such as Lewis Carroll’s Jabberwocky, The Teddy Bears’ Picnic and favorites featured in Disney movies – Fantasia, Beauty and the Beast.
Featuring: guest instrumentalists and Colleen Athparia, Pianist
Eckhardt-Gramatté Recital Hall, Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary, 206 University Court NW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, November 25, 2017
Christmas In Seville
We journey to Seville for joyous Christmas music one might hear in this most colorful of Spanish cities – lively villancicos (carols), sacred motets from the Renaissance by Guerrero and Victoria, and popular favorites like Feliz Navidad. Featuring the Calgary premiere of Joaquin Rodrigo’s Retablo de Navidad.
Featuring: The Festival Orchestra, Colleen Athparia, Organist
Knox United Church, 506 – 4 Street SW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, April 29, 2017
THE PASSION ACCORDING TO ST. JOHN
Johann Sebastian Bach
An intimate and human account of Christ’s betrayal, suffering, and passing. Bach’s St. John Passion sets scripture and poetry in eloquent and deeply expressive Baroque music. This Festival Chorus signature work will be performed partially staged, heightening its drama. Sung in German with projected English translation.
Featuring:
– with The Festival Orchestra, Timothy Shantz, Tenor/Evangelist
and vocal soloists from Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Program
Colleen Athparia, Organist;
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Knox United Church, 504 – 4th Street SW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Sunday, March 5, 2017
HALLELUJAH, GET HAPPY!
We explore the reach of Afro-American spirituals and the Jazz tradition into the Hollywood musical. A theatrical afternoon showing our showbiz side!
Featuring:
with Colleen Athparia, pianist and guest instrumental trio;
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Eckhardt-Gramatté Recital Hall, Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary, 206 University Court NW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, December 3, 2016
CHRISTMAS IN PARIS
Celebrating with festive music from the French capital. Featuring the Messe de Minuit pour Noël (Midnight Mass for Christmas) by Marc-Antoine Charpentier based on popular French noëls. French and Latin seasonal favorites, virtuoso organ ‘fireworks’, selections by Berlioz, Poulenc, and Daquin. O Holy Night !
Featuring:
The Festival Orchestra,
Colleen Athparia, Organist;
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Knox United Church, 504 – 4th Street SW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, April 30, 2016
HAYDN ‘Nelson’ Mass & FAURÉ Requiem
Two beloved choral masterworks – contrasting earthly conflict, in Haydn’s response to the Napoleonic wars, with the heavenly repose of Fauré’s beautiful melodies.
First performance of both works by The Festival Chorus in over 30 years!
Featuring:
The Festival Orchestra and vocal soloists from Calgary Opera’s Emerging Artist Program;
Colleen Athparia, Organist;
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Knox United Church, 504 – 4th Street SW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, February 20, 2016
Footlights, Footsteps and Fancy-Free
A salute to the great musicals, classic and new, of Broadway and London’s West End, including Les Miz, West Side Story, Showboat, Carousel, and more.
Count on surprises as you join us at a NEW VENUE, Calgary’s historic Grand Theatre!
Featuring:
Colleen Athparia, Pianist and guest instrumentalists.
Mel Kirby, Conductor
NEW VENUE: Theatre Junction Grand, 608 – 1 Street SW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, December 5, 2015
Christmas In London
Traditional seasonal works with orchestra including the Magnificat by John Rutter, Fantasia on Christmas Carols by Ralph Vaughan Williams and your favorite carols to join in. Experience a very British choral celebration!
Featuring:
he Festival Chamber Orchestra and guest soloists;
Colleen Athparia, Organist;
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Knox United Church, 506 – 4th Street SW, Calgary, AB
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Friday, May 1, 2015
Elijah By Felix Mendelssohn
In the top three of the most popular oratorio works ever composed, an abridged version with reduced orchestration will feature the Chorus and soloists in the stirring and dramatic epic story of the Old Testament prophet. Filled with some of the most beloved choruses such as “He, Watching Over Israel” and solos such as “Then Shall the Righteous Shine Forth” and “O Rest in the Lord”.
Featuring:
The Festival Orchestra; Colleen Athparia, Organist;
Laura Brandt, Soprano, Beste Kalendar, Mezz-soprano,
Matthew Bruce, Tenor Aaron Dimoff, Bass-baritone
(Members of Calgary Opera Emerging Artists)
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Grace Presbyterian Church, 1009 – 15 Avenue SW
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, February 28, 2015
Fairest Isles
The best of Irish, Scottish and English folk and popular choral songs in arrangements by Vaughan Williams, Elgar, Holst and other British arrangers. Will include a bow to the operetta and music hall traditions including some Flanders and Swann (“The Hippopotamus Song” and “Ill Wind”) as well as favourite Gilbert and Sullivan choruses.
Featuring:
guest instrumentalists.
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Rozsa Centre, Eckhardt-Gramatté Recital Hall, 206 University Court NW, University of Calgary
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, December 6, 2014
Christmas In Venice
Featuring the immensely popular Gloria in D Major, by Antonio Vivaldi and performed by the Chorus for the first time in nearly three decades. This 30 minute major work is filled with all the vigor and drive of Vivaldi’s popular instrumental concertos such as The Four Seasons, alternating with passages of great warmth and tenderness. Included on the program will be familiar carols inspired by the Italian- folk tradition in arrangements by Respighi, Rutter and others and the ever-popular sing-along.
Featuring:
The Festival Chamber Orchestra;
Colleen Athparia, Organist;
and vocal soloists
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Knox United Church, 506 – 4th Street SW
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Friday, April 25, 2014
Creation / Revelation
A concert of highlights from the great oratorios of Handel, Haydn and Mendelssohn spanning the entire epic narrative of the Bible, from Genesis to Revelation. A unique evening featuring the most famous solos, ensembles and choruses from Messiah, Israel in Egypt, The Creation, and other famous works. A musical journey from the eternal past to the end of time.
Featuring:
The Festival Chorus joined by:
The Festival Orchestra
Colleen Athparia, Organist
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Grace Presbyterian Church, 1009 – 15 Avenue SW
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Sunday, February 9, 2014
And So It Goes
The Chorus presents another of its ever popular traversals of jazz standards and classic pop selections in a special matinee performance. Effervescent guest conductor Malcolm V. Edwards plays host joined by a trio of Calgary’s finest jazz musicians for an afternoon featuring familiar favorites and delightful discoveries.
Featuring:
Guest Conductor, Malcolm V. Edwards
Guest Jazz Trio:
Derek Stoll, Pianist
Kodi Hutchinson, Bass
Greg Baker, Drums
Eckhardt-Gramatté Hall, Rozsa Centre, 206 University Court NW, University of Calgary
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, November 23, 2013
Hear the Angels Sing
Seasonal carol favorites and works by J.S. Bach, John Rutter, Fauré, and Janáček along with the ever popular audience sing-a-long in the festive setting of historic Knox United Church. A joyous start to your Christmas season with the magical sounds of harp, organ and chorus.
Featuring:
Gianetta Baril, Harpist
Colleen Athparia, Organist
Mel Kirby, Conductor
Knox United Church, 506 – 4th Street SW
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Friday, April 12, 2013
Song Of Praise
This year’s spring concert features Mendelssohn’s Lobgesang [Song of Praise], which is Mendelssohn’s answer to Beethoven’s Ninth ‘Choral’ Symphony. A combination of symphony and cantata never before performed in Calgary, this piece is full of beautiful melodies and stirring choruses by the most lyric, tuneful and engaging of Romantic composers.
Featuring:
The Festival Chorus
joined by The Festival Orchestra,
Organist Colleen Athparia,
and vocal soloists,
conducted by Mel Kirby
Grace Presbyterian Church, 1009 – 15 Avenue SW
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, February 2, 2013
One World, Many Voices
Guest percussionists and world instrumentalists join The Festival Chorus for an evening of folk-music from Latin America, France, Germany, China and Britain that explores the musical soul of world music. Featured on the program is Misa Criolla by Ariel Ramirez, a world-wide choral hit.
Featuring:
Conductor, Mel Kirby
with
Guest percussionists and world instrumentalists
Eckhardt-Gramatté Hall, Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, November 24, 2012
A Celtic Christmas
The Festival Chorus is joined by The Festival String Orchestra and Celtic musicians on Irish harp, Irish pipes, flute, whistle, fiddle for an evening that is sure to surprise, inspire and entertain. This concert features one of the most popular works in our history – Celtic Mass for the Sea – as well as beloved carols from the Celtic, Gaelic and Cornish traditions.
Featuring:
Conductor, Mel Kirby
with
The Festival String Orchestra and Celtic musicians
Knox United Church, 506-4th Street SW
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Friday, April 6, 2012
Beethoven & the Divine
An all-Beethoven evening showing Ludwig van’s full range of expression – from bursts of brilliant exultation to the most sublime, prayerful intimacy. Featuring his devout Mass in C Major, the sparkling Choral Fantasy and the atmospheric Calm Sea and Prosperous Voyage.
Featuring:
The Festival Orchestra
Colleen Athparia, Solo Pianist
Jack Singer Concert Hall, EPCOR Centre for the Performing Arts
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, February 4, 2012
Get Happy!
By Popular Demand – always a sell-out!
Chorus and the swinging sounds of a jazz trio in an intimate setting – spirituals and your favorite jazz standards.
Featuring:
Macolm V. Edwards, Guest Conductor
with
Derek Stoll, Pianist
Greg Baker, Drums
Kodi Hutchinson, Bass
Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, November 26, 2011
Christmas Majesty
Fill your Heart with the Spirit and Joy of the Holiday Season!
Experience the glory and joy of Christmas in song with the romantic beauty of Saint-Saën’s Christmas Oratorio and festive selections by Bach, Holst, Rutter and Vaughan Williams.
Join in your favorite carols with our everpopular traditional audience sing-a-long.
Featuring:
The Festival Orchestra
Knox United Church
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, April 9, 2011
Paul McCartney’s
Ecce Cor Meum [ Behold My Heart ]

Experience an international sensation.
Triumphant cross-over choral work by the former Beatle for the first time in Calgary.
Described by Paul McCartney as a piece about truth, love, honesty and kindness, Ecce Cor Meum is profoundly moving and melodic. A musical evening to be shared with those you cherish most.
Featuring:
Michelle Todd, Soprano
Cantaré Childrens Choir
The Festival Orchestra
Jack Singer Concert Hall, EPCOR Centre for the Performing Arts
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, February 5, 2011
Love’s Old Sweet Song
Delight in an evening of folk and choral gems from the British Isles.
Bagpipes and harp join in beloved Irish, Scottish and English tunes Come to the Fair, Country Gardens, Londonderry Air – for a nostalgic return to a bygone age.
Featuring:
musician, role
Eckhardt-Gramatté Hall, Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, November 27, 2010
Ring & Resound
Fill your he art with the spirit and JOY of the Holiday Season!
Celebrating the majesty of the season with The Foothills Brass and organist Colleen Athparia.
Treat your loved ones to an evening of stirring Baroque chorales, your favorite carols, and our ever popular audience sing-along. Surprises Guaranteed!
Featuring:
The Foothills Brass
Colleen Athparia, organist
Knox United Church
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Friday, April 2, 2010
Mozart Requiem
Liturgical music at the supreme heights of musical genius.
A new version including additional recently unearthed music from the Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart archives.
Plus: Five Mystical Songs by Ralph Vaughan Williams.
Richly romantic anthems affirming eternal triumph.
Featuring:
Isabelle Leclerc, Soprano
Vivien Shotwell, Mezzo-soprano
Isaiah Bell, Tenor
Matthew Cassils, Baritone
Brent Calis, Baritone
The Festival Orchestra
Jack Singer Concert Hall (EPCOR Centre for the Performing Arts)
Under the direction of Mel Kirby


Saturday, February 6, 2010
Gotta Swing! Gotta Sing!
Chorus and the swinging sounds of a jazz trio in an intimate setting!
Malcolm Edwards, Guest Conductor
Derek Stoll, Piano – Greg Baker, Drums – John Hyde, Bass
Eckhardt-Gramatté Hall, Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary



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