Music department to spread Christmas cheer

The holidays are quickly approaching and students can literally hear the sound of sleigh bells ringing and the scent of pumpkin pie wafting in the air.

However, the university has one more music event planned before letting students go for Christmas break.

Associate Professor and music department chair Dr. Mark Humphrey will conduct a Christmas music program in chapel Nov. 28.

The event will give students the chance to gather as a student body as a whole one last time before heading back home over the holidays.

“It’s really an opportunity for us to come together as a community and sing some carols. Most of us go our separate ways by the time Christmas is really here, but this is an opportunity for us to kick off our Christmas season as a UMHB community,” Humphrey said. “We don’t just come together as a learning community, and not even just as a Christian community. We come together as a community of people, and just to live together. One of the ways that we do that is to celebrate the holidays together.”

The program will consist of student musicians who include the wind ensemble, the jazz band and One Voice.

Each group will perform at different times throughout the chapel. The jazz ensemble is set to do an arrangement of “Jingle Bells” and “Winter Wonderland” while the wind ensemble will be playing along to “Greensleeve.”

Not only does Assistant Professor and athletic bands director Nils Landsberg want to bring the Christmas spirit to Chapel, but he wants to showcase the music department’s talent to the campus community.

“It’s an opportunity for ensembles to connect with a larger portion of the student body than we typically do in standard concert performances. Just to expose the campus to what we have here musically is a great opportunity for us,” he said.

One Voice will perform “Carol of the Bells” and “In the First Light.” They will also sing along to a medley the band is playing from Leroy Anderson’s A Christmas Festival, which features eight traditional Christmas


Assistant Professor and choral director Matthew Crosby is excited for the opportunity to work with his fellow musicians.

He’s also glad he’ll be able to give other students the chance to remember and honor Jesus’ birth, death and resurrection through song.

“It’s solely the collaboration being involved with different ensembles. It’s a quality concert, but also worship experience with the students. It’s just kind of being involved in the larger campus, but also within the music building. Sometimes we don’t get to interact as ensembles, so that’s fun,” he said.

The Christmas music played will be something to remember, and students should be able to relieve some stress during the final 50 minutes of the last fall Chapel.

Landsberg said, “I just hope that they will receive a message through music versus a message through the spoken word because the majority of chapel has featured guest speakers which are wonderfully enriching. But I personally believe there’s something more powerful with the message from song.”

Author: April Littleton

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