Soprano Rebecca Blume will join the Peninsula Singers this weekend in Sequim.

Soprano Rebecca Blume will join the Peninsula Singers this weekend in Sequim.

‘The Mystical Season’ concerts this weekend

Rebecca Blume, Peninsula Singers will perform in Sequim

SEQUIM — When Rebecca Blume steps forward to sing, her purpose is clear in her mind.

“I think about trying to make something beautiful,” said the young soprano, who’s poised to join the Peninsula Singers in concert this weekend.

“I try to touch people,” Blume said. Music “is such a special way of connecting.”

Blume, 32, lives in San Francisco and is a longtime friend of Peninsula Singers conductor Jerome Wright. She grew up in Seattle, singing from ages 8 to 18 in the Seattle Girls Choir, which Wright founded. After 27 years — and four CDs — with that ensemble, he retired, but not for long; in 2017, he succeeded the late Dewey Ehling as director of the Peninsula Singers.

Wright, who describes Blume’s vocals as “sublime,” invited her to return to the Northwest for “The Mystical Season: Preparing for the Holidays,” a pair of performances at Trinity United Methodist Church, 100 S. Blake Ave. Blume and the 24-voice Peninsula Singers, with Wright at the baton and Sequim’s Linda Dowdell at the piano, will appear at 2 p.m. both Saturday and Sunday.

Tickets to “The Mystical Season” are $15 general admission and $12 for seniors, students and veterans, at Odyssey Books in Port Angeles, Bauer Interior Design in Sequim and at the door. Music lovers also are invited to the public dress rehearsal this evening at 7 p.m.; admission is $5.

The concerts start with “two gorgeous songs,” promised Wright: Tomas Luis de Victoria’s “Ave Maria” and “O Magnum Mysterium” (“O Great Mystery”), followed by Washington state composer Morten Lauridsen’s modern version of “Mysterium.”

Then come the “Missa Brevis,” a brief mass, in C minor by Imant Raminsh, and “Suscepit Israel,” both with Blume as soloist. The latter is a Middle Eastern setting with doumbek — an ancient drum — and tambourine.

The men of the Peninsula Singers have a song of their own in these concerts: “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” from Randall Thompson’s “Frostiana.”

Then, Wright said, the mood lightens with the Alfred Burt Carols, John Rutter’s “Candlelight Carol” and even a sendup by Frederick Silver, “The Twelve Days After Christmas.”

In honor of Hanukkah, the choir will offer another Silver song, which Wright calls serious and haunting: “A Feast of Lights.”

“This Christmastide, Jessye’s Carol,” a piece written spontaneously at a Christmas party honoring Jessye Norman, comes next. Jane McCulloch wrote the poem, composer Donald Frazer wrote the music, and Norman performed the work at that party at the stroke of midnight.

“It is magical,” said Wright, adding the choir offers the carol in memory of Norman, who died last September.

To finish these concerts, the Peninsula Singers will invite the audience to join in “The Christmas Song” and “White Christmas” and then give their own reading — an exuberant one, Wright said — of Beethoven’s “Hallelujah” from “Mount of Olives.”

The singers can hardly wait to perform, added choir member Patricia Guthrie. Their favorites include “This Christmastide” and “The 12 Days After.” As for the finale, the Beethoven may not be as familiar as Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus,” but the “Mount of Olives” piece is “every bit as exciting.”

Blume, who is flying, just for a few days, away from her work as an attorney in California, welcomes a musical pause just before Thanksgiving.

“We’re always rushing around, and we don’t often get a chance to take time out and listen to something beautiful,” she said.

“It’s an honor to share this.”

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