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Augustana choirs set for Christmas concert

By Jessica McNalley, Camrose Canadian

Augustana’s choir program features three choirs that will come together to present the annual Christmas concert on Dec. 9 and 10. Supplied

Augustana’s choir program features three choirs that will come together to present the annual Christmas concert on Dec. 9 and 10. Supplied

The University of Alberta-Augustana is bringing more than 100 singers together to ring in the season with Chez Nous Christmas.


The annual Christmas production combines Augustana’s three choirs as they sing songs from the renaissance to contemporary time.

The Augustana Choir is the campus’s elite chamber choir. It is composed of Augustana students and requires anyone who wants to join to audition. The other two choirs are public choirs composed of students and other community members, the Manskor (men’s choir) and the Sangkor (women’s choir).  

It will take place on Dec. 9 at 8 p.m. and on Dec. 10 at 3 p.m. at the Augustana Faith and Life Chapel.  

Award winning conductor, pianist and educator Dr. John Wiebe will be conducting while Carolyn Olson and Roger Admiral will accompany the singing on piano. 

“The Augustana campus is a place that most people have heard of but have never been there before. I want to welcome the whole community to come to our concert to get into the Christmas spirit,” said Wiebe. 

The Christmas concert has been around for more than 100 years and always has exquisite sound as they pay great attention to detail. They are confident performers and have done both national and international tours.  

Every concert has a theme, this year’s being is Chez Nous (coming home) and snow. They will sing songs about cold, white flakes swirling down from the dark sky, the twinkling of lights, and the comfort, purity and tenderness of coming home for the holidays. 

It will be an upbeat and energetic performance. They will be singing many songs which the audience is encouraged to sing along to, like Winter Wonderland, White Christmas, and Let it Snow.   

Wiebe grew up in Manitoba and Ontario but moved to Alberta for university. He has always loved music and wanted to get involved with it, but knew that he did not want to be a musician.

He started to work with singers and came to the conclusion that he wanted to become a conductor.  

“Choir brings people together, and I love being a part of the physical and emotional journey of a singer,” said John Wiebe. 

As a conductor, Wiebe gets to be surrounded by music and people. He uses this unique opportunity to create a community of singers and other musicians. He enjoys being able to share his love for music with those who share the same love for it as he does.  

Wiebe is in his seventh year with Augustana and he truly does love his work, as he is a part of at least four more performances in this academic year alone. 

Tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for children, students and seniors. Tickets are available from choir members or at the door.   

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