First United Methodist to hold annual cantata Sunday

Published 7:34 pm Thursday, December 13, 2018

A longtime Christmas tradition continues Sunday at First United Methodist Church in Washington, as the church’s choir presents its annual Christmas Cantata.

A volunteer choir made up of the church’s members will perform this year’s cantata, entitled “The Glory of Christmas — Celebrating Christ’s Birth.” Spanning eight musical numbers and seven narrations, the cantata will blend a variety of styles with traditional Christmas carols. Composed by Lloyd Larson, the show promises a diverse array of sounds, from Austrian and Bohemian melodies to African-American spirituals.

“It’s basically telling the Christmas story,” FUMC Director of Traditional Music Susan Corprew said. “The message of Christmas is not just for people who lived long ago — it’s a message we need to hear today. It’s for young and old, and the Christmas story is filled with hope and promise.”

The program will feature Washington native Erin Stowe as the guest soloist. Stowe, a soprano, is a graduate of the East Carolina University School of Theatre and Dance.

Also playing special roles in the program, Scott Wilkinson, director of Praise and Worship at FUMC, will play guitar during the performance. Lee Stanley will provide accompaniment on piano and a percussion ensemble will round out the performance. Church member Jo Ann Ingersoll will reprise her role as the cantata’s narrator this year.

In preparation for the cantata, Corprew says the group has rehearsed tirelessly nearly every week since the beginning of October. From practicing to CD recordings, the group has put months of effort into making the performance happen.

“Hopefully, we’ll have a lot of people who will be able to come out,” Corprew said. “I think they’ll really enjoy it.”

The cantata will be performed at 11 a.m. Sunday at First United Methodist Church Washington, located at 304 W. Second St., Washington. The performance will last approximately 35 minutes.