WEEKEND IN PENINSULA SPOTLIGHT: Men’s Gospel Singers herald in Christmas week

PORT ANGELES — Soon and very soon, as the song says, the men’s voices will rise together, in an expression of welcome.

They’re the Peninsula Men’s Gospel Singers, and they’re about to herald the week of Christmas with a free concert Sunday at the Port Angeles Senior & Community Center.

The 19-voice choir, with their new director, Lee Moseley, and pianist Penny Hall, will step up at

2:30 p.m. inside the center at 328 E. Seventh St. While there’s no set admission charge, donations are welcome.

One highlight is an unusual rendition of “O Holy Night,” with bass Dave Meyer leading the way.

“It’s a very special arrangement; definitely not the traditional one,” Meyer said.

And this version epitomizes the concert: Meyer begins it solo, singing for about a minute and a half; then four other men join him for the second minute and a half.

For the final three minutes of the song, the entire choir joins in, to build to a finale.

Beware the pause toward the end, Meyer said. The piece sounds like it’s about over. Then Hall rolls a chord, and the men come right back in for the big and heartfelt finish.

“It’s a great song,” said Meyer.

That’s the bottom line here. The Peninsula Men’s Gospel Singers are here to celebrate the season with music, in all its transcendence. They pour themselves in, body and soul — so these singers are a highly animated bunch, said tenor Mike Stenger.

“It is so much fun singing with these guys,” he added.

Sunday’s hourlong performance will range from the contemporary to the traditional and back again, with solos by baritones Hans Kask and John Carson and basses Moseley and Meyer. Two quartets from the choir will also perform, and to bring it all home, the men will invite the audience to join them in singing “Joy to the World” and “Silent Night.”

For the very last number, the choir has chosen a reflection: “Let There Be Peace on Earth (and Let It Begin with Me).”

To Moseley, who’s been in choirs for decades, the songs still feel magical. He led singers in Arizona, Ohio and California before succeeding Peninsula Men’s Gospel Singers founder Michael Rivers this past August.

“You never get tired of singing,” he said.

And Moseley plans on proving that, with 14 Peninsula Men’s Gospel Singers concerts scheduled between now and spring. The choir’s latest CD, “PMGS Live in Concert” recorded last May, is available at many performances and at www.PMGospel

Singers.com.

This Sunday, Moseley hopes to give listeners something more than just the one hour of music.

“Come and be ready,” he said, “to enjoy the Christmas season . . . and maybe find something to take home.”

Or two somethings: “Inspiration,” said Moseley. “And joy.”

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