File photo Ekoos Vocal Ensemble set to entertain with new works and seasonal favourites.

File photo Ekoos Vocal Ensemble set to entertain with new works and seasonal favourites.

Ekoos Vocal Ensemble presents a Leipzig Christmas

Many voices combine to present an evening of Christmas music

Ekoos Vocal Ensemble enters its 21st year of singing by presenting a concert of Christmas music.  The theme this year, “A Leipzig Christmas,” was chosen by conductor Peter Dent in celebration of his favourite German city.

Leipzig has a rich musical heritage, including being the city where Johann Sebastian  Bach and Felix Mendelssohn composed some of their most famous works.

As Dent describes, “One can wander the streets where Leipzig-born Richard Wagner walked; have lunch in Auerbachs Keller, which was immortalized in Goethe’s Faust; stroll by the Thomaskirche and stand in awe before the imposing statue of J.S. Bach; proceed across the Ring Road to the Mendelssohn Museum; and pass by the beautiful Nicolaikirche, where J.S. Bach premiered the St. John Passion, and where in 2012, I had the once-in-a-lifetime experience of conducting motets by Bach and Mendelssohn.”

Besides Bach and Mendelssohn, many other composers worked in Leipzig, some of whom may not be as familiar to today’s audiences. These include Johann Hermann Schein, Heinrich Schutz, Max Reger, Gustav Schreck, and Hugo Distler. Ekoos is excited to present works by these fine composers.

The prime focus of this concert, however, will be performances of Im Advent, a work scored for eight voices by Felix Mendelssohn, and of Lobet Den Herrn alle Heiden (Psalm 117), one of six great motets by J.S. Bach, a composer whom Mendelssohn reintroduced to 19th  Century audiences.

“Both these pieces present significant challenges for singers but give tremendous satisfaction when mastered and performed well,” Dent adds.

As in past concerts, Ekoos will balance the performance of new and more challenging pieces with a number of “old favourites” chosen by the choir members.

The concert will also feature some of the most beloved Christmas carols, played in a traditional style by “Duo West” with Ellen Himmer on cello and Heather Gatland on violin.

Please join us for an evening of new and familiar music for the festive season, followed by refreshments. The concert will be on Saturday Dec. 6 at 7:30 p.m. at Holy Trinity Church, 1962 Murray Road. Tickets $12 at the door.

In addition to this concert, Ekoos looks forward to singing for the residents at Ayre Manor in Sooke. The choir is also pleased to have been invited by the Canadian Club of Victoria to perform at their Traditional Christmas Tea at the Empress, which will be attended by the Lieutenant Governor.

Director Peter Dent who is well known both as a choral director and a jazz musician. For much of his early career Peter worked as an adult educator and arts administrator, maintaining music as a recreational activity. His developing amateur career as a baritone led him to consider music more and to study conducting with James Fankhauser and Phil Mattson. He has conducted musical ensembles on many tours of the Czech Republic and acted as a musical juror for two choral festivals there. In addition to Ekoos, he is also the Musical Director of the Newcombe Singers and Coro Galiano.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Wild Wise Sooke is pushing to get local waste management companies to hop on board to provide bear-resistant bins as an option for residents. On Nov. 23, Sooke council voted to write a letter of support for Wild Wise to send to companies such as GFL Environmental Inc. and Sooke Disposal Ltd. (Black Press Media file photo)
Wild Wise Sooke continues push for bear-resistant bins as option for residents

Bins could cost anywhere from $150 to $300 or more, according to 2019 study

The Sooke Christmas Bureau, which serves over 400 hampers to families and residents in need, has extended their deadline to include anyone in need that has missed their Dec. 1 cutoff. (Black Press Media file photo)
Sooke Christmas Bureau extends deadline for hampers

Non-profit group says monetary donations goes further than non-perishables

Island Health has reported a COVID-19 outbreak at Saanich Peninsula Hospital. (Arnold Lim/Black Press)
Four new COVID-19 cases added to Saanich Peninsula Hospital outbreak

Inital round of patient testing is complete, staff testing continues

The District of Sooke is another step closer to approving its 2021 financial plan. (Kevin Laird - Sooke News Mirror)
Pandemic uncertainty looms over Sooke municipal budget

Council trims property tax increase to 3.3 per cent

The Sooke Santa Run will feature their youngest members as Santas, an annual tradition for the firefighters in Sooke, East Sooke, Shirley and Otter Point. The drive-by event takes place throughout the Sooke neighbourhood on Dec. 12. (File - Sooke News Mirror)
No one outside fire hall allowed to help volunteer for Sooke Santa Run

Drive-by event takes place on Dec. 12, with goal to raise $15,000

Motorists wait to enter a Fraser Health COVID-19 testing facility, in Surrey, B.C., on Monday, Nov. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Another 694 diagnosed with COVID-19 in B.C. Thursday

Three more health care outbreaks, 12 deaths

(AP Photo/Paula Bronstein)
POLL: Has COVID-19 changed your plans for the holidays?

The lights are going up, the stacks of presents under the tree… Continue reading

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Dec. 1

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Watch Messiah at home with the Sooke Philharmonic

Concert available to stream Dec. 12

Emergency crews used a backhoe loader to clear fire debris from the scene of a fire on Wesley Street Thursday as police and firefighters gathered up propane tanks, stoves and fireplaces used by camp residents to heat tents. (Chris Bush/News Bulletin)
City of Nanaimo dismantles downtown homeless encampment after fire

Four to six tents burned up in Wesley Street fire Thursday, Dec. 3

A demonstrator wears representations of sea lice outside the Fisheries and Oceans Canada offices in downtown Vancouver Sept. 24, demanding more action on the Cohen Commission recommendations to protect wild Fraser River sockeye. (Quinn Bender photo)
First Nations renew call to revoke salmon farm licences

Leadership council implores use of precautionary principle in Discovery Islands

Ten-month-old Aidan Deschamps poses for a photo with his parents Amanda Sully and Adam Deschamps in this undated handout photo. Ten-month-old Aidan Deschamps was the first baby in Canada to be diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy through Ontario’s newborn screening program. The test was added to the program six days before he was born. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Children’s Hospital Eastern Ontario *MANDATORY CREDIT*
First newborn tested for spinal muscular atrophy in Canada hits new milestones

‘If Aidan had been born any earlier or anywhere else our story would be quite different’

BC Ambulance Services reassures people that the service is well staffed and ready to respond. Photo by Don Bodger
BC Ambulance assures the Island community they’re ‘fully staffed’

‘Paramedics are not limited to a geographical area.’ — BCEHS

(Pixabay)
Canadians’ mental health has deteriorated with the second wave, study finds

Increased substance use one of the ways people are coping

Most Read