Nelson soprano Noémi Kiss — with guest trumpet soloist Tim Bullen playing behind her — is pictured with the Symphony of the Kootenays and a combined choir of MBSS and Selkirk students at the Symphony’s open rehearsal Saturday

Nelson soprano Noémi Kiss — with guest trumpet soloist Tim Bullen playing behind her — is pictured with the Symphony of the Kootenays and a combined choir of MBSS and Selkirk students at the Symphony’s open rehearsal Saturday

A stellar celebration of the music of the season

Symphony of the Kootenays’ “A Winter’s Star,” Key City Theatre, Dec. 5.

Yme Woensdregt

O ne of the things which defines the Christmas season is music —l ots and lots of wonderful music. From the song of the angels at that first Christmas to the carols and new songs of Christmas, they delight us and warm our hearts.

We were treated to some of that wonderful music on Saturday night as the Symphony of the Kootenays continued the celebration of their 40th season. The concert began with wonderful renditions of Happy Holidays, White Christmas and O Holy Night.

This concert featured some of the young musical talent in our area. Four local piano students performed with the Orchestra. Introduced by Arne Sahlen, who reminded us that just as it takes a village to raise a child, so it takes a whole community to foster such musical talent.

Katie Feng played Bach’s “Sheep May Safely Graze”. She had a delicate, light touch and made this wonderful musical treasure sing. Then we were treated to Bach’s Concerto 1 in D minor for piano and orchestra. David Robertson played the opening movement with a self–assured and confident touch. His technical abilities were more than evident. Karen Feng played the notoriously difficult slow second movement. Emily Daly tackled the third movement, playing with a deft touch and a beautiful singing tone. All four young musicians show again what an amazing community of musical artists we have here in the heart of the Canadian Rockies.

Clockwise from foreground: Katie Feng, Karen Feng, Emily Daly and David Robertson.

The second half feature a modern work by Karl Jenkins, Stella Natalis. The orchestra was supplemented by a massed choir of students from Mount Baker Secondary and Selkirk Secondary Schools, as well as Nelson soprano Noémi Kiss and Symphony lead trumpet Tim Bullen. Jenkins’ piece was a stellar celebration of the music of this season. It drew the best from the young voices and the orchestra.

We were also treated to a couple of soprano highlights from Handel’s Messiah. Noémi Kiss has a light, agile voice which was perfect for this beautiful masterpiece.

All in all, it was a wonderful evening for the virtually sold–out Key City Theatre. The audience left with big smiles on their faces and hearts brimming with the good feelings which are engendered by great music lovingly played.