Hot cocoa with mini marshmallows floating happily on top, Christmas trees covered in twinkling lights, and the scent of sugar cookies baking in the oven all help bring the holiday feelings home. But there is something about Christmas music that touches the soul in a way only music can.
The Department of Music at University of the Cumberlands recently hosted their fifth annual Christmas concert, “Christmas at the Cumberlands,” filling the venue with music and thereby filling the hearts of the audience with warm Christmas cheer. More than 100 students in multiple campus bands and choirs performed Christmas music ranging from traditional to jazz. The concert also featured special guests from the Fine Arts Association of Southeastern Kentucky. More than 600 community members were in attendance. The concert was free of charge.
Dr. Bob Dunston, retired Cumberlands professor, served as emcee/narrator; Mrs. Erica Harris, executive director of alumni services, opened the event; Sharon McGinley, staff accompanist, performed a piano solo; Martize Smith, a senior at Cumberlands, was the featured vocalist with the Jazz Band, and both he and Olivia Williams, also a senior, soloed with the Chorale.
Following the concert, refreshments were provided in the Boswell Campus Center, courtesy of the Office of the President.
The Department of Music would like to thank Branham Productions in Pikeville, Kentucky, for providing lights and sound for the event.
Shawn Sudduth, music professor, said, “Christmas at the Cumberlands is a unique and special event. Our students participate in a professionally produced, high-quality show, and the fact that we are sharing it free with the campus and greater local community makes it really special. People have come to plan on it to kick off their Christmas season with family and friends. Many in attendance this year expressed how much they enjoy the variety of groups that perform, and others said they appreciate the ability to enjoy such a classy production in our own community.”
The Department of Music is active in the community and around the state, hosting concerts throughout the year, visiting local schools to teach children about musical instruments, and sending students to perform with intercollegiate bands. To learn more about the music program at Cumberlands, visit www.ucumberlands.edu/academics.
From the Department of Music at University of the Cumberlands to you, have a very merry Christmas!