Last week Chelsea and I were coming out of
the Christmas Tree Shoppes store
when we were met by two Asian men.
They were smiling and issued an invitation
and tickets to an event scheduled for last evening.
The smiling men said it was a Christmas Cantata
produced and performed by a Korean
Choir. They assured us it would be well
worth our time.
There wasn't a lot of information about it
other than a large photo book with lots of
writing in Korean....
which I pointed out that I couldn't read....lol.
I did notice that it was to be held in the smaller theater owned
by Sight and Sound and was fairly certain they wouldn't
allow anything to happen there that wasn't at least safe.
Interestingly enough, I felt compelled to accept tickets
for Warren, the moms and I.
Now, remember, the Moms were in Guatemala
at that time so I had no idea what they might
say about going.
But, knowing my Mother's love for other cultures
and especially the Korean people I thought she
would be interested for sure.
You see, when I was a teenager,
we taught Sunday School in a Korean church.
I remember those enthusiastic and smiling
faces....so earnest in song and when listening to
We knew of the talent that was possible.
I could only hope that this was something wonderful...
or at the very least tolerable.
Well, it was definitely worthwhile.
The choir rolled into Lancaster yesterday morning
with two semi trucks, several vans and cars....
their bus had broken down in Minnesota.
They set up stages and worked out lighting.
They tuned instruments and ran through their
program on a new stage.
Then we arrived.
We were greeted over and over again
and directed to our seats.
Right up front!
I would be thankful for this later.
Then the program began.
With some teen dancers.
It was cute.
We thought that we could sit through
an evening of aerobics on the stage.
The music was happy Christmas music.
But then came the first of five sets.
An orchestra and choir.
Now, before this had begun the emcee had
let it be known that every sound we heard was
live....no recordings of anything.
So...it only now occurred to me that this means
the choir was singing for the dancers and that the
orchestra was playing even then.
In our world of recorded music I just assumed
that they were dancing to "canned" music.
There is no way for me to explain to you
the professionalism of this group.
It was beyond anything I have witnessed live.
The tones were perfect.
Absolutely perfect pitches, breath control and
I told Warren on the way home that I am not
easily star struck to the point of wanting to meet
someone...but I really wanted to shake the hand of the
conductor. WOW!! The music genius there.
They shared the Christmas story in a way that was beautiful
and touching. I couldn't help but notice that I had never
seen an all Asian cast performing the Nativity before.
It was beautiful.
They sang songs of hope before and then celebration
after the Christ child was born.
Children of the group members performed
two very adorable dances.
Bringing smiles and laughs by their
antics and then loud applause
and giggles as some of them got caught by the
There was a very funny sketch about the joy
The talents of the group stretched beyond the music.
They can ACT!
We were laughing so hard at their antics!
|Oooh...there is the director. My hero!|
Isn't she sweet?
Made me think of my former music student, Abigail,
who also plays the cello.
We were a much different venue than this group is used
to. They have sung in the Sydney Opera House and
Madison Square Gardens.
This was apparently an exploratory event to set up
for another visit next year.
Am I ever glad we were at the Christmas Tree Shoppes
when we were.
I'm still trying to wipe the silly grin from my face that
we were able to enjoy this amazing event.
The message of the gospel was crystal clear
as they shared in song and then as a Korean Pastor
from New York preached through an interpreter
to close the evening.
The Gracias Choir is a part of
International Youth Fellowship.
I'm going to learn more about them....
If you happen to notice that they are coming to
a city near you....
Please, please take my word for it
We were their last stop this year.
But they plan to come back next year.
I can't wait!