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Religion & Culture | Boulevard Baptist Festival of Choirs set to sparkle

Published:Sunday | January 29, 2017 | 1:00 AM
The Samuel Felsted Chamber Orchestra.

Nothing compares to the magic of live choral music. It begins the moment one enters the concert hall and there is a feeling of anticipations in the air an expectation that what is about to happen will transport you to a special emotional and spiritual plane.

No one knows ahead of time how it will turn out. The atmosphere is charged with intensity. The music is captivating and electrifying. This is the feeling one experiences at the annual Festival of Choirs hosted by the Boulevard Baptist Church.

Now in its eighth year, the much-anticipated Festival of Choirs will be held on February 8, starting at 5 p.m. at the Boulevard Baptist Church at 2 Washington Boulevard, Kingston 20.

It culminates the Church's anniversary celebrations and promotes the finest musical talents of various choirs, conductors, and musicians.

Patronage of this rich, musical feast is given by the Most Honourable Lady Allen, and this year's staging is celebrated under the theme 'Born to Die'. The theme was inspired by the Christmas Cantata Born to Die by former director of music for the National Baptist Congress the late Glen Edward Burleigh.

 

This year's focus

 

This year, the festival is designed to showcase the conducting artistry of music director Deacon Joseph McIntyre, who attended the prestigious Westminster Choir College in the summer of 2016.

Another special feature of this year's staging will be the visit and participation of North Korean-born, naturalised American guest conductor, handbell player and traditional worship leader of the Love of Christ Lutheran Church in Mesa, Arizona Jung Eun Csuy.

She will conduct the Boulevard Baptist Choir as it presents the opening fanfare piece Canticle of Brother Sun by Grayston Ives. A handbell solo of the Lord's Prayer will also be performed by her, accompanied by Mickel Gordon on piano.

Orchestral accompaniment will be provided by the Samuel Felsted Chamber Orchestra, which is named after Jamaica's first documented composer Samuel Felsted (1743-1802).

Musical presentations will also be done by the Northern Caribbean University Choir, the Andrews Memorial Seventh-Day Adventist and East Queen Baptist Church Choirs. Organ and piano accompaniment will be provided by Michelle Bromley and Mickel Gordon, respectively.