Pickerington High School Central's Chorale and various choirs will spread holiday cheer this month as part of an annual Christmas tour and concerts.
Tuesday, Dec. 10, the PHS Central Chorale embarked on its 2013 Christmas Chorale, a singing tour for which they perform holiday songs at the Pickerington Senior Center, local country clubs and several schools.
This year's Christmas Chorale will involve 28 Central Chorale students in grades 10-12 and 12 members of the Central Chorale Jazz Band.
Tour performances will span through Dec. 19, and include stops at Heritage, Pickerington, Sycamore Creek and Tussing elementary schools, as well as Diley Middle School and Ridgeview Junior High.
"They sing a lot of well-known Christmas songs, they dance and the Chorale Jazz Band joins us every year," said Heather Wilkins, PHS Central vocal music director.
In addition to the annual Christmas Chorale tour, Central's Chorale and each of its choirs will perform at 7 p.m. tonight, Thursday, Dec. 12 along with the Central Orchestra for a concert in Central's Performing Arts Center, 300 Opportunity Way.
The show, called "A Musical Holiday Card to Our Community," is free and open to the public.
"In total, there will be 140 members, which includes the chorale and all of Central's choirs," Wilkins said. "Members of the Central band also will be performing at the concert.
"It's an orchestra-centric concert, but we all collaborate."
The orchestra concert also will showcase combined performances of Handel's Hallelujah Chorus and Leroy Anderson's A Christmas Festival.
The orchestra's concert will be followed Wednesday, Dec. 18 by "Sounds of Christmastime," a free concert slated for 7 p.m. in the Central Performing Arts Center.
Sounds of Christmastime will feature each of Central's choirs.
Male and female choir and chorale members will perform separately, and the concert will once again conclude this year with an opportunity for choir alumni to join current Central students in a singing of Do You Hear What I Hear?
"It's some traditional Christmas songs and some not-so-traditional," Wilkins said. "It's some newer pieces and maybe some new arrangements of old ones.
"We're also inviting (former Central Vocal Music Director) John Long to come and join us."
A day after the Sounds of Christmastime concert, 21 members of Central's Symphonic Women's Chorus will perform as part of BalletMet Columbus' The Nutcracker.
That event will take place at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 19, in the Ohio Theatre, 39 E. State St., Columbus.
"They'll be part of the Snow Chorus in BalletMet's The Nutcracker," Wilkins said.
"Our Symphonic Women's Chorus is an audition-only group, and we were actually recommended to be in the Snow Chorus.
"They're a lovely group and I thought that was really cool," Wilkins said.
Additional information about upcoming Central choir performances and other events for students in the Pickerington Local School District is available at www.pickerington.12.oh.us.