The Canopy of Lights, The Nutcracker, Chimes of Christmas, regional orchestra and choral holiday concerts – all staples of the season between Thanksgiving and the New Year. But this year, the Jacobs School of Music is introducing something a little different.
Steve Houghton is Professor of Percussion and Jazz at the Jacobs School and the driving force behind the Holiday Celebration.
We started this idea in 2009. We did it at Neil Marshall [Black Culture] Center, and really it was just kind of an informal idea to bring different elements of the school together. So we brought in some great singers from the opera department, we brought in the jazz department, we brought in some great players from the string department. Then we invited some other guests like Charles Webb, and the result was just a kind of a warm fuzzy evening, but it ended up being a cross-section of the school of music. So we let that percolate for a year, and this year Dean Richards was ready to go forward with it on a larger scale.
The family-friendly concert will feature a full studio orchestra, brass choir, classical guitar, top-notch vocalists, solo piano, and more. And it will all be supported by the Holiday Celebration CD featuring many of the artists who will be performing live at the Musical Arts Center and produced by Jacobs' own Recording Arts Department.
Once we had them all ready to go, then I just started putting out a call to the musicians, to the faculty. They didn't flinch. They all came forward, and I said, "Oh yeah. By the way, there is this concert. And again they all just stepped right forward.
The Holiday Celebration recording will be available at the concert, the Jacobs School website, and at CD Baby.