WEEKEND: Men's gospel choir to sing holiday glory Saturday, Sunday
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The Peninsula Men's Gospel Singers, with director Michael Rivers, far left, and accompanist Penny Hall, far right, will celebrate Christmas with concerts Saturday in Sequim and Sunday in Port Angeles.

By Diane Urbani de la Paz
Peninsula Daily News

“Hey Shepherd! Shepherd!” is just one of the new songs on its way to town this weekend.

The Peninsula Men's Gospel Singers, the 16-voice choir led by Michael Rivers, is adding to its repertoire.

And the men will demonstrate as much in performances at Dungeness Valley Lutheran Church, 925 N. Sequim Ave., on Saturday — and at the Port Angeles Senior Center, 328 E. Seventh St., on Sunday.

Admission is by donation, and the concerts will start at 3 p.m. both days.

They will travel from “What Child Is This?” to “O Holy Night” to a handbell rendition of “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel.”

As is traditional, Karen Coles will provide sign language interpretation throughout the performance, while Penny Hall will serve as accompanist.

“These concerts are a great opportunity to come and relax into the spirit of the season,” said Rivers, who founded the Peninsula Men's Gospel Singers a dozen years ago.

New offerings

He highlighted a few new offerings: Dan Cobb, first tenor with the gospel singers and a founding member, will offer the “Emmanuel” handbell solo, and an ensemble of singers will do “Hey Shepherd! Shepherd!,” Rivers' original song.

“Noelle Johnson will grace PMGS with her angelic voice, and a small group of 'shepherds' will join her,” Rivers said.

He debuted the piece at last weekend's Carols Galore concert at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Port Angeles along with Cobb and tenor Shawn Dawson. Holy Trinity music minister Joy Lingerfelt urged them to sing it again.

“The audience will be encouraged to sing along on 'Hark! The Herald Angels Sing,' 'O Little Town of Bethlehem' and 'Silent Night,'” Rivers added, “and I don't suppose we'll be able to stop them from joining in on the rousing chorus of a very traditional 'O Holy Night.'”

Piano solo

Also in these concerts, pianist Hall will offer a solo “Angels from the Realms of Glory,” then join Linda Eaton for a four-hands-piano-and-full-choir version of “Ding Dong Merrily on High.”

Cookies and cider will be served both afternoons, and the Peninsula Men's Gospel Singers' CD “O Holy Night” will be available for purchase.

To learn more about the choir, its singers and its forthcoming concerts, phone member Mike Stenger at 360-457-7205 or visit www.PMGospelSingers.com.

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Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at diane.urbani@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: December 12. 2013 11:08PM
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