Napa Valley’s Bel Canto’s third annual holiday concert, “Before the Marvel of this Night,” will feature familiar carols in contemporary settings by Robert Shaw, Alice Parker, John Rutter and Norman Luboff, a cappella classics like Jan Sweelinck’s sparkling “Hodie Christus Natus Est” and Randall Thompson’s “Alleluia,” as well as a premier performance of Gary Malkin’s “Benedictus,” a setting of texts drawn from various faith traditions.
Under the direction of Ted von Pohle, they’ll present two performances on Friday, Dec. 8, at 7:30 p.m., at St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, 1917 Third St., Napa, and on Sunday, Dec. 10, at 3 p.m. at Mont La Salle, 4401 Redwood Road, Napa.
“In a year that seemed fraught with political division, global concern, and of course, the heartache of our local firestorm, I wanted to present a program that both soothed and elevated the spirit,” von Pohle said. “Bel Canto’s mission is ‘creating musical experiences to delight the heart and inspire the soul.’ There’s something about sitting in a beautiful space, listening to exquisitely crafted songs, sung by fine voices that has both a calming and renewing effect. I want this music to be a balm in these often uncertain times.”
Bel Canto is the Napa Valley’s newest vocal chamber ensemble, was the brainchild of von Pohle, created to bring together local, musically experienced singers to perform innovative, challenging, and primarily, a cappella repertoire. The name, Bel Canto, means beautiful singing or beautiful song.
Advance tickets are $20 general admission and $10 for students, complimentary for anyone who lost a home in the October firestorms. Tickets may be purchased online at belcantonv.org. All tickets purchased at the door at $25.