Many Moods Of Christmas

Holiday classics & beautiful hymns: Bosque Chorale presents annual Christmas program featuring 36-member choir and eight-piece orchestra Dec. 8

CLIFTON – What better way to usher in the holiday season than with an assortment of Christmas classics mixed in with some of the most beautiful hymns?  Once again, the Bosque Chorale will spread Christmas cheer with their special concert, “The Many Moods of Christmas.”

Musical Director and Conductor David Anavitarte returns to Bosque County for the 17th time to lead the 36-member Chorale and eight-piece orchestra The Bosque Strings and Dr. Cameron Hoffman on the BAC’s beautiful Chickering grand piano provide the orchestral accompaniment.

Tickets for this always wonderful and outstanding concert Thursday, Dec. 8, at 7:30 p.m. in the Frazier Performance Hall of the Bosque Arts Center in Clifton are $20 and may be reserved in person, online at, or by calling the BAC at 254-675-3724. A reception will be held immediately following the concert in the BAC Atrium.

Since September, the Chorale has rehearsed the collection of 18 Christmas songs “The Many Moods of Christmas” arranged by Robert Shaw and Robert Russell Bennett. The marvelous mixture of music sure to bring back memories for listeners, includes many familiar traditional seasonal carols like “Silent Night,” “O Come, All Ye Faithful,” “Joy To The World,” “Away In A Manger,” “What Child Is This,” and “The First Noel.”

Since its inception in 2009, the Bosque Chorale has presented about twenty productions, typically two per season, with the exception of 2020 when COVID-19 restrictions kept the Chorale silent for 18 months. Prior to the restoration of the Third Floor at BAC as the Frazier Performance Hall in 2017, area churches were used for Chorale performances. The Chorale presented its first performance, “Handel’s Messiah,” on Dec. 11, 2009 at Trinity Lutheran Church.

Chorale Charter Member Chandra Robertson has been in all but one performance of the Chorale said she has had a particularly good time rehearsing for the upcoming Christmas concert.

“It has nice, contrasting styles of music,” Robertson said. “It’s a challenge, too. And that makes it fun for the singer.” Robertson elaborated that while the concert features many beloved carols, it also includes a few songs she’d never heard. “I love the way it contrasts the quiet and lovely ‘Away in a Manger,’ and then transitions to a march like ‘Fum Fum Fum,’” Robertson said. “Now that’s one I didn’t know, and it’s fun to sing. I’ve had a great time.”

Likewise, Chorale Charter Member Cleon Flanagan feels the upcoming concert is unique and special. Flanagan explained that in previous Choral productions the group has performed classical music and popular Christmas music, but not the beloved hymns and carols included in “The Many Moods of Christmas.”

“This is the first time for us to perform traditional Christmas music,” said Flanagan. “And I like it.” 

“The instrumentation between the numbers is just superb,” said Flanagan. “It’s simply tremendous.  The strings and orchestra are just so important to this performance.”

At age 91, Flanagan is the oldest member of Bosque Chorale. Through the seasons, he has grieved the loss of several friends and members of the Chorale, but relishes the opportunity to continue singing and participating in music which has been such vital part of his life since childhood. Licensed as a Methodist minister in 1952 and ordained for nearly 70 years, Flanagan said he often believes the musical aspects of his ministry may have been what he did best; he certainly enjoyed the music ministry.

Of his involvement in the Chorale, Flanagan says he naturally doesn’t have the range he once had. “I don’t make as much of an impact with the group today,” Flanagan said. “But I enjoy music so much, and I love to sing. Music has been such a beautiful part of my life.”

Chorale conductor Anavitarte has been directing the Bosque Chorale since the spring 2013 production. His passion for music traces back to evenings as a child spent observing rehearsals for the Philadelphia Orchestra. He began playing piano at the age of seven and has been involved in music ministry and teaching most of his adult life. Local audiences have come to enjoy Anavitarte for his broad talents and exuberant stage personality.


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