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Bethel College Sinfonia and Wind Ensemble to present holiday concert

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NORTH NEWTON, KAN. -- On Monday, Dec. 5, the Bethel College Sinfonia Chamber Orchestra and the Bethel College Wind Ensemble will welcome the holiday season with a wide range of music, from 18th-century opera to 20th-century Christmas music. The annual holiday concert will be held at 8 p.m. in Joliffe Auditorium of Memorial Hall. Note the time change; the event was originally scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Richard Tirk, assistant professor of music, directs both groups. Admission is free and open to the public.

A brass ensemble made up of current students and community members will join the groups for several numbers. The Sinfonia will also feature guest singer Kathryn Kasper, Bethel professor of music, on two songs.

The Wind Ensemble will perform three pieces by 20th-century composers: Morton Gould’s "Ballad for Band," H. R. Reynold’s arrangement of Morten Lauridsen’s "O Magnum Mysterium" and Leroy Anderson’s "Sleigh Ride."

"I’ve always been a sucker for ‘Sleigh Ride,’" said Tirk. "It’s one of those holiday pieces that sounds fantastic with a great band like ours."

The Sinfonia will follow with four pieces. Student conductor Parker Stanley will direct a selection from Handel’s "Messiah." Kasper will then sing "Non so piu cosa con, cosa faccio" and "Voi che sapete che cosa e amor" from Mozart’s "The Marriage of Figaro" with the ensemble. The program will conclude selections from Paul Hindemith’s "Tuttifantchen," a 20th-century piece.

"The great thing about this program is that it’s very diverse," said Tirk. "It really has something for everyone."

The Sinfonia and the Wind Ensemble are made up of Bethel College students, with some students from local high schools and several community members.

Wind Ensemble personnel are: flutes Anna Lever, freshman from Moundridge, Jennifer Regier, freshman from Newton, Laurie Steffen, sophomore from Cunningham, and Erin White, freshman from Bel Aire; oboe Leanne Reimer, Hesston; clarinets Megan Abrahams, sophomore from Canton, Chad Goering, freshman from Moundridge, and Dan Graber, sophomore from Freeman, S.D.; bass clarinet Kasey McClendon, freshman from Cunningham; bassoons Rebecca Claassen, freshman from Moses Lake, Wash., Heather Robertson, Hesston, and Jonathan Root, senior from Topeka; saxophones Brett Jackson, sophomore from North Newton, Joel Linscheid, sophomore from North Newton, and Susan Schmeichel, freshman from Hurley, S.D.; trumpets Arlin Buller, North Newton, Peter Goerzen, junior from Newton, Aaron Linscheid, junior from North Newton, and Kelcy Voth, junior from Goessel; trombones Jerel Fast, junior from Boulder, Colo., Matt Kaiser, senior from Inman, and Matthew Root, freshman from Topeka; tuba/baritones Joel Garber, junior from Hesston, and Mark Lyles, North Newton; and percussion Angela Carriker, senior from Colby, Michael Holland, guest artist from Wichita, and Graham Thompson, guest artist from Wichita.

Sinfonia personnel include several players from the Wind Ensemble as well as first violins Mary Goering, Newton, and Elizabeth Lang (concertmaster), freshman from Davenport, Iowa; second violins Paul Regier (principal), freshman from Newton, and Rachel Voran, Newton; violas Emma Lewis, junior from Newton, Isaac Olson, freshman from Denver, Colo., and Amy Swartz (principal), sophomore from Wichita; cellos JulieAnn Minns (principal), senior from Wichita, Parker Stanley, junior from Liberty, Mo., and Terra Wiens, Newton; and basses Laura Schlabach, freshman from Wichita, and Michael Voth (principal), freshman from Topeka.

Bethel College is a four-year liberal arts college affiliated with Mennonite Church USA. Founded in 1887, it is the oldest Mennonite college in North America. Bethel is known for its academic excellence and has been named a Top Tier college by U.S. News & World Report every year since 1998. For more information, see the Bethel web site at www.bethelks.edu.

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