LAWRENCE – KU Holiday Vespers, a favorite University of Kansas seasonal tradition, will include several concerts in Lawrence and Johnson County during the first weekend of December.
On Friday, Dec. 2, the KU Choirs and KU Symphony Orchestra will travel to Johnson County Community College for Vespers-on-the-Road, a performance made possible by the generous support of Reach Out Kansas, Inc. That concert will be at 7:30 p.m. at the Carlsen Center’s Yardley Hall. Admission is free, but tickets are required and can be reserved by calling 913-469-4445.
The 92nd Annual Holiday Vespers will be on Sunday, Dec. 4. The KU Choirs and KU Symphony Orchestra will give two Vespers performances, the first at 2:30 p.m. and the second at 7:30 p.m. at the Lied Center of Kansas. Tickets are $13 for adults and $11 for children, seniors and students, and can be purchased at the Lied Center Ticket Office, by phone at 785-864-2787 or online at lied.ku.edu.
Among other works, Vespers will feature the sacred music of Morten Lauridsen and C.P.E. Bach’s “Magnificat” as well as contemporary works “From a Distance” and the “Concert Suite” from the movie “The Polar Express.” Other holiday music will include the festive “Calypso Carol,” “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year” and an audience sing-along Christmas medley. Véronique Mathieu, assistant professor of violin, will be a featured soloist in Astor Piazzola’s “Spring” from “The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires.”
The KU Choirs and KU Symphony Orchestra will be conducted by Paul Tucker, director of choral activities; Mariana Farah, associate director of choral activities; and Matthew O. Smith, associate director of bands.
Prior to both Vespers performances, a free, 30-minute Pre-Vespers performance will be held at 1:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 4 in Bales Organ Recital Hall. Pre-Vespers will feature the KU Chamber Singers, under Tucker’s direction; the Brass Quintet, coached by Michael Davidson, associate professor of trombone; and the Harp Ensemble, directed by Erin Wood, harp lecturer. The concerts also will include carol arrangements with Wood on the harp and Dina Pannabecker Evans, assistant dean for student opportunity, on the organ and an audience carol sing-along.
For more information on Vespers, contact the KU School of Music at 785-864-3436 or visit www.music.ku.edu.