St. Ignatius has been our Christmas home in San Francisco since forever, and always draws a big crowd of the faithful, called in our final song in this program, Joe Jennings' arrangement of "O Come All Ye Faithful." Along with so many old friends, relations, supporters and board members, Travis Rogers' Napa High School choir makes a tradition of our St. Ignatius Christmas concert. After the church had cleared tonight, they favored those who were left ( mainly us and our staff) with a Christmas carol. Napa H.S. also has the distinction of being the alma mater of Kory Reid. St. Ignatius is our biggest room for Christmas. We sing Biebl from the highest balcony then sing some carols from the back and the center so that we can get closer to the audience.
Pouring down rain along with the Bay Area's now legendarily horrible traffic caused some of us to think that we weren't going to make the concert. More stress than we like to have, but we all arrived in time for a short warmup, and gave a very warmly received concert in the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament - a great place to sing. We've been going to Sacramento since (our) time began, and it's a wonderful friendly capacity udience always showing off plenty of Christmas red.
Christmas at Stanford's Memorial Church is a longstanding Chanticleer tradition. You can see why we enjoy performing in this magnificent room. This was the 'long' program with intermission after which we perform the second part in our more casual outfits ( see below.) Another unusually warm night for Palo Alto. Tomorrow's trip to Sacramento promises something more wintery.
Normally, when we get to Carmel it's just about Christmas, tomorrow or the day after. Our usual date is December 23 when the Mission is decorated with poinsettias, and we can feel that the audience knows Christmas is around the corner. This year we are in Carmel 10 days before, for reasons having to do with the complicated mosaic that is our Christmas schedule. Add to that the full moon heralding the Knight tide tomorrow, and the very balmy ( for Carmel in December) air, and it was kind of eery for the Christmas veterans among us. We must remember that for four of us ( Gerrod, Andy, Chris, and Logan on their first Christmas tour) nothing was unusual. In any case, it was a wonderful evening as always in the beautiful Mission Carmel, one of our favorite places on earth.
Last Friday at St. Timothy's Church in Danville, LAB XVI joined a Christmas festival organized by former Chanticleer soprano Darita Seth. LAB sang on a bill with some wonderful East Bay High School Choirs (Mt. Eden, Castro Valley, Monte Vista) and did themselves proud for an audience of about 200.