Columbia County's civic and youth orchestras will join forces with area choir members Dec. 6 to bring a free Christmas concert to an Evans church.
The second annual Handel's Messiah Sing-In will begin at 6 p.m. at West Acres Baptist Church on Gibbs Road.
"When I grew up in the Washington, D.C., area, this was a pretty common thing, where people would come and bring their music and just sing on a lot of choruses from Handel's Messiah ," said the orchestra's music director Rob Nordan. "There hasn't been that sort of thing here in Augusta."
The concert will open with a performance by the Columbia County Youth Orchestra. Civic orchestra members will take the stage next to play popular Christmas tunes.
"People that are serious music lovers would enjoy it, but then there will be some lighter things too," Nordan said. "It'll be a pretty good mix."
Singers from throughout the area will join the civic orchestra to perform selections from Handel's Messiah .
The musicians will rehearse just once -- on the same day as the performance.
"That's the one time that we come in and sit down and actually sing pieces from Handel's Messiah with the orchestra," he said.
The concert will last for about an hour and 15 minutes, Nordan said.
About 250 people attended last year's concert, he said. The church's sanctuary can accommodate 1,600 visitors.
Nordan said he plans to host the civic orchestra's annual Christmas concert for years to come and hopes to soon begin offering educational music programs in county schools throughout the year.
"As time goes on, we're looking to do more with developing that as well as our regular concerts," he said. "Our organization (Columbia County Orchestra Association) is here to promote the musical arts and foster music appreciation."
If you go
What: Columbia County Civic Orchestra's second annual Handel's Messiah Sing-In
When: 6 p.m., Sunday, Dec. 6
Where: West Acres Baptist Church, 555 Gibbs Road
More: Call (706) 6573, ext. 114, or go to www.columbiacco.org.
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