Celebrate the yuletide season with a holiday concert by the Little River Music Society Community Chorale.

The concert entitled "Christmas!" begins at 7 p.m. Friday at Second Baptist Church, 720 W. Seventh St.

"This choir does great work and they are among the best I've ever conducted," said Barbara Felts, director and founder of the nonprofit group. "It's an honor to work with them."

The night of songs of the season features 49 vocalists from Hopkinsville and the surrounding areas, as well as brass, percussion, organ and piano.

Three accompanists for the program are Dr. Mark Campbell, Dawn Sharp and Dan Wilkinson. Bo Clayton, along with other professional musicians, will also perform with the chorale.

Felts said the concert will feature several holiday songs the audience will know, including arrangements of "Jingle Bells" and "Mary, Did You Know?" and the great spiritual, 'Mary Had a Baby."

Quartets will perform a variation of "Fa-La-La" and "Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas."

"I always try to get a variety of music that will satisfy different palates," she said. "Some people like to hear heavier music and some people like the lighter Christmas songs as they know them. So, I always try to do a variation from those different genres."

Kyle Rader, assistant to director Felts, will lead the audience in "A Christmas Fantasia," singalong to conclude the concert.

"We'll all join together in this culmination of beautiful Christmas carols," he said. "We'll all be able to sing and make beautiful music together for the Christmas season."

Rader praised the community chorale for their diversity and dedication.

"This group is amazing. We're made up of all different areas of life, all different ages of life ... We come together for the glory of being able to make music that can touch the soul," he said. "In the end, we work hard to accomplish something bigger than just ourselves. That's really what we're all about. We're about making beautiful music together that we can turn around and bless our community with."

Felts said the event will kick off a weekend of Christmas activities in downtown Hopkinsville.

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"The church is all decorated, which is so good for the Christmas spirit," she said. "The parade is Saturday, so people could make a weekend of it."

The concert is free, but donations will be accepted. Rader encouraged the community to celebrate the season and to support Little River Music Society.

"This concert will get you in the (holiday) spirit," he said. "I think this is a time we can come together as one. We can hear all types of Christmas music from telling the traditional Christmas story of Jesus coming into this world to save the world and also telling the story of carols. You're hearing everything that you'd want to hear in a Christmas concert."

Reach Michele Vowell at 270-887-3242 or mvowell@kentuckynewera.com.

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