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NAVE at St. Agnes' Church. Pphoto: John Eldridge
NAVE at St. Agnes' Church. Pphoto: John Eldridge

Choral group explores traditional English Christmas music

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A northern Adirondack chamber choral group will perform Festival of Lessons and Carols on Friday night at Notre Dame Church in Malone, St. Peter's Church in Plattsburgh on Saturday night and on Sunday afternoon at St. Agnes Church in Lake Placid. The Northern Adirondack Vocal Ensemble, or "NAVE", has twenty singers from Clinton, Essex and Franklin Counties. It's conducted by Andrew Benware. Todd Moe talks with Angela Brown, a co-founder and singer in the group.

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Todd Moe
Morning Host and Producer

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NAVE is an SATB (Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass) group with a lot contemporary music in its repertoire. Brown says the group has become like a tight family, with Benware being their guide and mentor. She praises him as being very skillful and charismatic, able to get the best out of the group.

Brown said the holiday concerts will offer the audience the chance to sing. There will also be ten readers from the community employed in each performance. Readings will be from both the Old and New Testaments, and there will also be some poetry read.

Dispersed throughout are hymns accompanied by organ, as well as by the audience. And there will be around ten anthems by the choral group, making a nice mix, Brown said

The group performs primarily in a cappella style, Brown says, and will stay small and balanced, not incorporating songs that need a large orchestra. However, they do use some instruments occasionally. They want to remain true to their chamber music mission.

According to Brown, the church venues are beautiful looking, as well as sounding, and will heighten the performance.

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