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Inter-denominational choir presents ninth annual Christmas concert

The more than 50 members of Airdrie’s largest inter-denominational choir and orchestra will bring the Christmas story to life Dec. 8 with traditional music and narration, according to choir director, Sandra Brown.
Songs of the season
An inter-denominational choir and orchestra has presented a traditional Christmas concert for the last eight years at Airdrie’s Kingdom City Church – and will do so again Dec. 8.

The more than 50 members of Airdrie’s largest inter-denominational choir and orchestra will bring the Christmas story to life Dec. 8 with traditional music and narration, according to choir director, Sandra Brown. “I was prompted by God to bring these people together to form a choir and do a traditional concert – that is, a Christian concert using traditional, good choral music combined with narration. The Christmas story from the Bible is the narration,” she said. Brown said she founded the choir eight years ago after moving to Airdrie from the United States, where she’d been for a number of years. “In 2010, the Airdrie Alliance Church had hired me to do a traditional service in their church,” she said. “I asked them if they would sponsor an inter-denominational choir and orchestra to do concerts.” The inter-denominational choir and orchestra, according to Brown, is a way to bring a variety of people together and do something for the community that she felt was lacking. “I have always been involved in church and school choirs,” she said. “I was feeling concerned that a lot of the choirs were disappearing from churches...and were being replaced by other things.” The Airdrie Alliance Church – recently renamed the Kingdom City Church – continues to sponsor the annual event, which is held in its building. “They provide a place for us to practice and to do the concerts, free of charge,” Brown said. “That’s been great.” The main choir includes members aged 14 to 75, while a kids’ choir features 14 singers from five to 11 years old. A 17-piece orchestra complements the choirs. During the concerts, which Brown said will last approximately an hour and a half, the audience will be treated to a number of traditional pieces, including classical, spiritual and gospel works. “There’s a variety of choral works that we sing,” she said. “We end the concert with the singing of the Hallelujah Chorus, and we invite members of the audience up to sing with us. We’ve done that every year.” Jacquie Heslop was the choir’s photographer for two years and now also sings in the group. “Everyone is from a bunch of different churches within Airdrie and Calgary,” she said. “We have 22 churches represented.” Joining the choir has provided Heslop with an opportunity to learn how to sing, she added. “It’s just great to have someone who knows so much teach us, because I didn’t know much before I started,” she said. “This is my second year singing in the choir.” While the concerts are free, Heslop said a free-will offering will be collected, with all donations going to cover the costs of putting on the concert. “We will have donation boxes there, and we also collect money for a charity called Haiti Arise,” she said. “This year, they’re helping with hurricane relief [in Haiti].” Two concerts will be held Dec. 8 – one at 2:30 p.m. and the second at 6 p.m. – at Kingdom City Church on Summerfield Boulevard S.E.