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Singing Christmas Tree to feature new numbers in annual performance


November 22, 2017

The 36th Annual Sweet Home Singing Christmas Tree will feature some new music along with classics this year as the choral group celebrates “The Love of Christmas.”

The event is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Dec. 1 and Dec. 2 and 3 p.m. Dec. 3 in the Sweet Home High School auditorium.

The choir is directed by Paul Rowton and accompanied by Bill Langdon on the piano.

“We’re getting to the point where we’re polishing the songs,” said Sue Olson, president of the board. “They’re really sweet and nice. We are going to have fun. It’s a lovely program. It’s a sweet program.”

The choir includes 32 members, Olson said.

Familiar music will include “Oh, Lord, I Give You Praise,” also known as “Panis Angelicus,” Olson said. Other numbers include “Home for the Holidays” and Barbara Streisand’s version of “Jingle Bells.”

The Singing Christmas Tree will perform “The Peace Carol” as performed by John Denver and the Muppets, Olson said, and also on the agenda is “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus.”

The rest are newer songs, Olson said. A total of 13 are in the program. At least six are brand new to the group.

The traditional finale will be Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus,” with help from Singing Christmas Tree alums.

Paul Rowton Jr. will host the traditional singalong prior to intermission and a chance for youngsters to meet Santa.

The annual raffle includes several items.

“I have crafted a quilt, and a gal in Albany is quilting it for me,” Olson said. Karen Young is donating a hand-woven rug, and Frances Wiulson has made a Christmas afghan. The choir also will raffle a Christmas tree.

The Singing Christmas Tree is funded primarily by donations and fund-raising events.

This year, the Linn County Cultural Coalition gave Singing Christmas Tree $2,500.

“The grant allowed us to purchase all new LED Christmas lights for our tree,” Olson said. “Our new lights are larger and brighter than any we have used in over 14 years. We know they will last us a very long time.”

The City of Sweet Home community grants program provided $320.

“With this grant, we were able to purchase new stage monitors and several microphone cables to benefit our choir and instrumental accompanists,” Olson said. “When the singers and musicians can hear themselves, they are better able to present a wonderful sound for our audiences.”

Admission is free, but donations are accepted, she said.


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