NORTH NEWTON, KAN. – The Bethel College Concert Choir’s annual spring break tour will visit a number of venues in the Upper Midwest before winding up with a concert in St. Louis and the traditional home concert.
The home concert is March 26 at 7 p.m. in Memorial Hall on the Bethel campus.
The choir generally takes freewill offerings at their concerts. This year, they have decided to designate most of the money raised for Mennonite Central Committee.
Mennonite Central Committee, or MCC, is a global relief, service and peacebuilding organization supported by Anabaptist Christian churches in North America.
The first concert of the tour for the 49-voice choir, under the direction of William Eash, is March 18 at Bethel Mennonite Church in Mountain Lake, Minnesota.
March 19, the choir will sing in several iterations in Freeman, South Dakota. The small vocal ensembles, Woven (women) and Open Road (men), will be at several churches in the morning, and the full-choir concert is in the evening at Salem-Zion Mennonite Church in rural Freeman.
March 20, the choir will take its one swing outside the United States, to Winnipeg, Manitoba, where they will sing in the evening at Sargent Avenue Mennonite Church.
After a free day in Winnipeg March 21, the choir is back in Minnesota with an evening concert at Faith Mennonite Church, Minneapolis, March 22.
March 23, the choir will give an evening concert at Wellman (Iowa) Mennonite Church; March 24, at Mennonite Church of Normal (Illinois); and March 25, at St. Louis Mennonite Fellowship.
The offering at the home concert March 26 will go to defray tour expenses. All other money raised through offerings will go to MCC.
The Bethel College Concert Choir performs mostly sacred music, including arrangements by Mack Wilberg of the New England folk hymns “Death shall not destroy my comfort” and “We’ll shout and give him glory,” and arrangements of the spirituals “Bound for the promised land,” “All my trials,” “I don’ feel no ways tired” and “Run, Mary, run.”
This year’s program also has a number of works by contemporary composers such as Eric Whitacre, Michael J. Mills, Gwyneth Walker, Ola Gjeilo and Ysaye M. Barnwell.
Concert Choir personnel are: Mareike Bergen, Moundridge; Sydney Bollinger, Lawrence; Connor Born, North Newton; Stephanie Brown, Newton; Kim Carbonell, Wichita; Polly Carlson, Freeman, South Dakota; Candy Dao, Salina; Emily Epp, Freeman, South Dakota; Elizabeth Friesen Birky, Denver; DrewAnne Gatlin, Broadus, Montana; Dominick Geddert, Fresno, California; Westen Gesell, Winnipeg, Manitoba; Matthew Graber, Freeman, South Dakota; Hailey Heide, Wichita; Reece Hiebert, Walton; Madison Hofer-Holdeman, Wichita; Kate Jolliff, Newton; Shekhinah Jones, Salina; Emily Knight, Moundridge; Nathan Kroeker, Augusta; Abby Kurtzer, Haxtun, Colorado; Seth Larson, Wichita; Cayla Lawless, Burlingame; Olivia Leif, Concordia; Garrett Lindley, Goddard; Alec Loganbill, Hesston; Sophia Minder, Lawrence; Shannon Neifert, Pratt; Nicholas Preheim, Peabody; Ryne Preheim, Reedley, California; Austin Regier, Newton; Connick Roe, Kingman; Randall Schmidt, Lawrence; Michelle Schrag, Moundridge; Rebecca Schrag, Newton; Kylee Schunn, Whitewater; Billie Selichnow, Wichita; Tyler Shima, Topeka; Garrett Smith, Moundridge; Bailey Strausz, Moundridge; Chase Stucky, Moundridge; Andrew Thiesen, Newton; Drew Trollope, Kingman; Marieke van Bergeijk, Hesston; Anna Wiens, Goessel; Benjamin Wiens, Goessel; Kaci Wilson, Sterling; Serena Wong, Newton; and Jayce Yoder, Topeka.