Rehearsals begin again Tues October 11, 2022

6pm Handbells,7pm Adult Choir

Exeter United Church

42 James St, Exeter .....

New members are always welcome, no auditions

or choral experience is required!

Membership fee $125

For more information contact:

Jean  519-235-0629       Carol    519-235-0759

Thank you to Exeter Lakeshore Times-Advance, Dan Rolph for interviewing Dr. Richard Heinzle and writing this wonderful article. Your support to the South Huron Community Choirs over the years is greatly appreciated.

 

Exeter Lakeshore Times-Advance

 South Huron Community Choirs prepare for holidays

Author of the article:Dan Rolph

Publishing date:Oct 27, 2022  •  2 minute read

 

 

 

 

Artistic director Dr. Richard Heinzle

EXETER – The South Huron Community Choirs will be back on the stage this holiday season.

The choir and handbell groups held their first rehearsals earlier this month as they began preparing for their upcoming Dec. 7 Community Christmas Concert at Exeter United Church. The Christmas concert will mark the first time the groups hold a public concert since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We had a fairly good turnout,” said artistic director Richard Heinzle of the first rehearsals. “We’re still not where we were before COVID, but we’re getting there.”

“We had a good number of people, and everybody is excited.”

Heinzle said this year’s concert will include a performance which will be split into two parts, the first of which is being called “Holde-Tyme Christmas” which will include classic holiday favourites, some of which the crowd will be invited to join in on as well. The second half will bring Handel’s Messiah back to the stage.

“Three years ago, we did the whole concert as Handel’s Messiah, and that was our most successful concert so far,” said Heinzle. “People just enjoy singing Handel’s Messiah, so we thought we would come back with that. That will be our big finale … and of course we’ll end with the Hallelujah chorus.”

The path to finally stepping back onto the stage has been filled with challenges for the choirs. Heinzle said there were hopes of a 2021 get-together, though the spread of the omicron variant made that impossible. He said the groups eventually were able to meet starting in April 2022 to practice for a possible June concert, but COVID concerns and a lack of turnout put an end to those plans as well.

“It didn’t quite come together at that point, but now we’re getting a good number of people coming back,” said Heinzle. “People are just getting excited. There’s a real buzz when we come together … For your average choir member, it’s a highlight every week to go to choir practice and sing with a group with people, meet and chat. That was something we missed a lot.”

In addition to the Christmas concert, the choirs will also be holding two spring concerts. The first concert will be April 28 at Exeter United Church, while the second show will be April 29 at Huron Shores United Church in Grand Bend.

Heinzle said both the choir and handbell groups always welcome new people who are interested in joining. Those interested can stop by rehearsals on Tuesday nights, which run from 6-7 p.m. for handbells and 7-9 p.m. for the choir at Exeter United Church.

The 5th traditional Christmas Poinsettia Fundraiser is also being organized alongside Huron Ridge Greenhouses in support of the choirs. Those interested in buying poinsettias can do so through choir members or by calling Ruth Petersen at 519-235-1778. For more information about the South Huron Community Choirs, visit www.southhuronchoirs.com.

Greetings one and all — 
South Huron Community Choirs 
December 2020

 
This will be a Christmas to remember - and a year that will be hard to forget. It's hard not to sing and share the joy of music. Just recently, I listened on line to the RCCO's 93rd annual Christmas Carol service from Metropolitan United in London (you can find it on You Tube). I was amazed to hear Katy Clark sing Handel's He shall feed his flock — one of my favourite pieces, while wearing a mask. Her voice was crystal clear and the solo rendered so movingly. Paul Grambo and Carmen Specht, the two other soloists, also sang, so beautifully, wearing masks. 


We want to let you know that your Board of Directors are being diligent during this away time and looking forward to when its safe to be back together again. We hope you were able to participate in our very successful Christmas fundraiser and have a plant or an arrangement to brighten your home. It was a wonderful way to remind our community of our presence. We want to encourage you to connect with each other over the phone, to keep in touch and offer encouragement. For some these isolating times can be more challenging than for others.

 
When we were first married, My wife and I lived in Thompson Manitoba (that's north of the 56th parallel), the company town of International Nickel. Our first five Christmas' were spent away from our families. And for both of us who had deep family Christmas traditions, there were tears. We had major adjustments to make, new traditions to invent, and new friends who like us were far from home who helped us make memories. 

 

This Christmas will be similar to our beginnings. We will be alone. away from our children and grandchildren but we will have zoom meetings with them, perhaps over a meal or around the gift giving. We will share some laughter and most of all we will sing some of our favourite carols. It's important for us to be safe so that next Christmas will be all the more special. 


Someone has said "The first Christmas was pretty simple. Its okay if yours is too-. We want to wish you a Merin Christmas and Happy Holidays. As Vera Lynn sang "We will meet again...some sunny day". 


John Henderson. Vice-President with all the Board Members