The Chorale performed a Christmas concert December 8, 2012, at Immanuel Church in Hartford, under the direction of Richard Coffey and Colin Britt.
Featured works included Ottorino Respighi’s colorful cantata, Lauda per la Natività del Signore, sung in Italian, with the wind ensemble and pianists of the HSO plus soprano Louise Fauteux, mezzo-soprano Cynthia Mellon, and tenor Jack Pott, all led by Colin Britt, the Chorale’s assistant conductor. The women of the Chorale, with harpist Susan Knapp-Thomas, offered Benjamin Britten’s beloved A Ceremony of Carols, a rich tapestry of ancient and colorful texts, set to music by England’s most important composer of the 20th century. From the pen of one of America’s greatest composers, we presented Daniel Pinkham’s most popular work, the captivating Christmas Cantata for choir, organ, and brass quartet, featuring the HSO’s brass ensemble.
The concert began in a blaze of sound for brass and chorus with Allen Bonde’s one-minute “Fanfare for Christmas” – a great musical shout of “Gloria in excelsis”! The men offered the tender “O Tannenbaum,” sung in German, and a number of other enchanting arrangements were heard. The Hartford Chorale Chamber Singers presented selections of their own, and the entire audience was invited to join chorus, organ, and brass, in two traditional carols.