12/12/11 Culver Academies’ annual Christmas Concert, usually held in the afternoon during the school day, will be going prime time this year, as well as featuring guest vocalist Haley Swindal, a 2004 alumna.
“Christmas in Culver: A Musical Holiday Celebration” will be performed Tuesday, Dec. 13, at 7:30 p.m. in Eppley Auditorium on the Academies campus. Admission is $10 — or the equivalent in canned and non-perishable foods. All proceeds will benefit the Marshall County Food Bank.
The holiday concert will showcase the choral and instrumental students of the Academies’ Fine Arts Department in various arrangements — the Concert Band, Culver Choir, Jazz Band, Woodwind Quintet, Flute Choir, harpist, percussionists, keyboardists, and a string quartet — performing a variety of religious and secular seasonal favorites.
A few surprises from the Music Department are anticipated. (’Tis the season, after all).
Swindal is currently starring in “Home for the Holidays” at Westchester Broadway Theatre. After the holidays she will be star in “Annie” with Sally Struthers at Theatre of the Stars. She has performed at Carnegie Hall with the New York Pops and jazz singer Steve Tyrell. On national tours, she has appeared in the musicals “White Christmas,” “Cabaret,” “Jekyll and Hyde,” “The Sound of Music,” and “Jesus Christ Superstar.” She was one of three soloists that created a rock ’n ’roll show in Monaco, France, in 2009.
In an email Swindal said, “I am thrilled and honored to be returning to sing at this year’s holiday concert. On top of all of the wonderful theatrical and musical experiences I had at Culver that provided the foundation for my career, some of my greatest life lessons, dearest memories, and strongest friendships were at Culver. It truly feels like coming home for Christmas!”
She is dedicating her Culver performance to her grandfather, the late George Steinbrenner, a 1948 Culver Military Academy graduate. Swindal sang “God Bless America” at Yankee Stadium in September 2010 and continued throughout the Yankees’ post-season.
The Academies musicians are under the direction of Maj. Bill Browne, Chad Gard, Mary Lynch-Weirich, and David Weirich. The Culver Choir is directed by Stacey Warren. The performance is being produced by Richard and Marsha Coven, in conjunction with the Huffington Concert Series.
For additional information, contact the Eppley Auditorium Box Office at (574) 842-7058. Box Office hours are 1 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.