Spreading Christmas Cheer by Singing Loud for All to Hear


The Freshmen, advanced, and Frontenac choruses performing in the annual Winter Christmas Concert

Maggie Mays, Senior Staff Writer

St. Joe’s annual winter choir concert took place this year on the night of Sunday December 5. This is a tradition put on each year by chorus director, Mr. Kowalczyk, and performed by the three chorus crews at SJA- Freshmen, Advanced, and Frontenacs- as well as the handbell ensembles.

Whether you prefer fast-paced Christmas music or slower, traditional tunes, the concert performed music for you. From A Holiday Sing-Along, to Marshmallow World/Candy Man, and Were You There on That Merry Christmas Night, the freshmen chorus sang a wide variety of Christmas carols.

Freshman Mollie Combs has an avid love for singing and is a member of the Freshman Choir at SJA.

“I liked spending time with my friends. We had a lot of practice where we learned new songs and had fun at warm ups, and Mr. Kowalczyk is very understanding. The best part of the concert is singing all together- even with the advanced chorus and frontenacs. We got to learn alongside some of the advanced chorus members and listen to them sing,” Mollie said.

The Advanced chorus put on quite the show as well, performing a multitude of holiday favorites including Joy To The World and Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.

Senior Kathleen Dolan, a member of the Frontenac choir since her freshman year, was particularly grateful for the concert this year, as last year they were unable to perform.

Because we didn’t get to have a concert last year due to covid regulations, it was extra special to be able to have one for my last year here at St. Joe,” Kathleen said.

Kathleen was not alone in her thinking. Mr. David Kowalczk, the chair of the Department of Fine Arts and Music at St. Joe, poured a great deal of time and energy into planning and rehearsing to be able to put on the show and was satisfied with the results of the concert. 

My overall favorite was the final piece of the concert “God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen (with the Nutcracker)” which had both the Advanced Chorus, the Freshmen Chorus, and the Handbell Ensemble. It is a great, fun, and upbeat arrangement of a traditional carol.  I love hearing all of our students performing together at once!” he said.

Overall, the three school choruses as well as the handbell and instrument ensembles came together to put on a successful performance and set the tone for a Merry Christmas at the Academy.