Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Musical Joy with the British Columbia Boys Choir

Musical Joy with the British Columbia Boys Choir
Special Guest: Ken Lavigne, Tenor
Friday, December 5, 7:30 p.m. - Cleland Theatre, 325 Power Street, Pencticton BC
Presented by Penticton Community Concerts
Tickets $30, $5 for students, available at Shatford Centre, 760 Main Street, Penticton, and at the door.
Sunday, December 7 - Ryerson United Church, 2195 W. 45th Ave. Vancouver
Presented by the British Columbia Boys Choir
At the door tickets: Adults $28, Students $16
Advance tickets: Adults $24, Students $12 by calling 1-888-909-8282

On December 8, 1968, a tradition was born when the newly formed British Columbia Boys Choir gave their first full-length concert, just in time for Christmas. Forty-six years later that tradition continues as the Choir reaches into the future and presents Musical Joy on Sunday, December 7 at 4 p.m. in Vancouver’s Ryerson United Church (2195 West 45th Avenue) – with a difference! And on Friday, December 5 at the Cleland Theatre in Penticton BC.

Ken Lavigne: This year the Choir welcomes popular and inspiring tenor Ken Lavigne as their special guest and joins him for several songs from his newly released CD, ‘Comfort and Joy’ - songs like Away in a Manger, Adeste Fideles and Christmas Time.

Says Tony Araujo, the Choir’s award-winning choral and artistic director, “I’m really excited. I’ve not worked with Ken before. It will be a great experience for the boys to be singing with such a professional artist.”

Adds Ken, chuckling, “When I was a lad I was in a choir, so I know I’m going to be having some serious flash backs while I’m singing with them.”

Silent Night: This is going to take a little bit longer to explain, but it’s worth every word and note! The1968 concert, which was given a glowing review by Max Wyman in the Vancouver Sun, and was also filmed by CBC for airing on television closer to Christmas, closed with a magnificent and spine-tingling recessional Silent Night.

That following summer, while the Choir was on their first of many European Tours, a young member, Timothy Pugh, while wandering in Oberdorf, in Austria, came across St. Nicholas parish church, where Hans Gruber composed the music for Silent Night. Timothy went running to get Don Forbes, the Choir’s founding choral director. The Choir ended up singing there the next day, for a wedding, and from the church balcony, performed a memorable Silent Night. (For more details and other amazing stories, see their recently published book ‘A Song to Remember, 45th Anniversary Memoirs’ which will be on sale at the concert.)

And so another tradition was born; at the end of each Christmas concert the story of Silent Night has been told before the soaring sounds of the choir lift the audience up and away.

However, this year, in addition, the choir will be joined by Ken’s magnificent voice. “It will be a slightly different version,” explains Tony, “injecting a new flavour while honouring the tradition.”

Says Ken, “There’s something magical about hearing those boys’ voices singing the simple and majestic melody. I’m really looking forward to performing it with them.”

Musical Joy! One thing’s for sure, the Choir’s traditional Christmas still holds a good mix of seasonal music. “There will be familiar tunes, and some that the audience will not have heard before,” explains Tony passionately. “The boys will be singing a jazzy version of Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer, there’s the Angel’s Carol by John Rutter, and Mille Cherubini In Coro by Franz Schubert. While the show is mostly about Christmas, we are also highlighting the Choir’s repertoire. For example, the tenors and basses are singing the powerful Prayer of the Children, and we are performing One Dream, which honours the voice of a child, the voice of the future.”

Tickets: Bring in the spirit of the season with Musical Joy! Bring family and friends for a truly unforgettable musical experience.
For the December 5 concert in Penticton: Tickets $30, $5 for students, available at Shatford Centre, 760 Main Street, Penticton, and at the door.
For the concert in Vancouver: Advance tickets are $24 for adults, and $12 for students (by calling toll free 1-888-909-8282) and at the door, $28 for adults and $16 for students.
For more information and to purchase CDs and copies of “A Song to Remember: 45th Anniversary Memoirs” (which will be available at the concert) visit

For more information about Ken Lavigne and his CDs visit:



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