Merry Music

Payson Choral Society brings the beauty of Christmas to the Rim Country with a program of songs for all tastes

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Dennis Fendler/Roundup

The Payson Choral Society will present its popular Christmas concert in two programs at 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 12 at the Payson High School auditorium. There will be music for all tastes. There will be African music, gospel, traditional and classical Christmas carols.

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Dennis Fendler/Roundup

Soloists Karyn Nelsen and Shelly Wayland practice at a Monday rehearsal.

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Dennis Fendler/Roundup

John Landino and Bill Backes, work through their parts of the Joyous Noel program to be presented Dec. 12 at the Payson High School auditorium.

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Dennis Fendler/Roundup

The joy of music and fellowship is shared by the society members, like Barbara Potvin.

As a child I started getting excited about Christmas when we would hear carols on the car radio – I think it must have been a time when the commercial world actually waited until after Thanksgiving to start revving up the holiday shopping season engines… or I was too young to pay attention to commercials and such.

So, holiday music has always been the “go” sign for me when it comes to Christmas. And one of the Rim Country’s most wonderful clarions of Christmas is the Payson Choral Society’s annual holiday concert. This year the concert, A Joyous Noel, will be presented at 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 12 at the Payson High School auditorium.

The Payson Choral Society, directed by Daria Mason with accompaniment by Victoria Harris, has been practicing since early August. The members have practiced every Monday night at the Payson United Methodist Church to blend 73 voices into a sound that some say rivals that produced by professionals.

The concert this year will feature something for everyone, said Payson Choral Society President John Landino. The program will be fairly lighthearted and includes African songs, traditional and classical Christmas songs and gospel music. Jack Irvine said the program would include: African Noel; the gospel song You Raise Me Up; the popular carol from the movie Meet Me in St. Louis, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas; and the more classic carol, Gloria.

The program also features several solo and duet performances. Karyn Nelsen and Joe Salas will do Baby It’s Cold Outside; Pat Watson will sing You Raise Me Up; Jennifer Baltz and Sharon Collins will present We Need a Little Christmas; and Mike Snively and Jeff Rushlow will do Mystery.

Concert tickets are $8 for adults, students, and children are free. Tickets may be purchased in advance from choral society members, The Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce and at the library. Tickets will also be available at the door before each concert. Proceeds from the concerts provide musical scholarships to middle school and high school students. These are awarded each year at the group’s annual spring concert.

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