Central College’s theatre and music departments each present holiday fare. A festive holiday dinner is offered, too!
“Merry Christmas, Strega Nona”
A children’s story for the ages, “Merry Christmas, Strega Nona” is based on the children’s book of the same name by Tomie dePaola. The much loved “Grandma Witch” – first created by dePaola for the 1976 Caldecott Honor Book “Strega Nona” – is back. This time, she’s making her annual Christmas feast for the town of Calabria, Italy. Strega Nona will need as much Christmas magic as she can get to have the feast ready on time in this charming tale for all ages.
Performances will take place at the Kruidenier Center on Central’s campus in Pella, Iowa, under the direction of Mary Jo Sodd, professor of theatre, at:
- 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 29
- 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30
- 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1
- 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2
- 7 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6
- 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7
- 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8
- 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9
Tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for children 12 and under. Each ticketed adult may bring one child age 12 and under free. Tickets are available by calling 641-628-9000.
The Flying Pans Steel Band under the direction of Stan Dahl, senior lecturer of music, presents Christmas favorites with a Caribbean sound.
The ensemble will perform “Carol of the Bells” by Mykola Leontovych; “Feliz Navidad” by Jose Feliciano; “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” by John Frederick Coots and Haven Gillespie; “Silent Night” by Franz Gruber; “Mele Kalikimaka” by Robert Alex Anderson; and “Wizards in Winter” by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.
The performance will take place at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1, in the Vermeer Banquet Room of Graham Conference Center on Central’s campus in Pella, Iowa. Admission is $5 or a new, unwrapped toy for Toys for Tots at the door.
Combined Wind Ensembles Concert
The Central College Symphonic Wind Ensemble teams up with the Central Iowa Wind Ensemble, both under the direction of Mitchell Lutch, associate professor of music and director of bands.
The Symphonic Wind Ensemble will perform “The Cowboys” by John Williams; “Puszta” by Jan Van der Roost; “Foundry” by John Mackey; and “Cumbria Chapolera” by Juan Jose Ramirez Gomez.
The Central Iowa Wind Ensemble will perform “Flourish for Wind Band” by Ralph Vaughan Williams; “First Suite in E-flat for Military Band” by Gustav Holst; “Lincolnshire Posy” by Percy Grainger; and “Glory of the Yankee Navy” by John Philip Sousa.
The combined ensembles will perform “Adventures on Earth” from the movie E.T. by John Williams; “Nimrod” from the Enigma Variations; “I Vow to Thee My Country” by Gustav Holst; and “Rolling Thunder” by Henry Fillmore.
The performance will take place 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2, in the Douwstra Auditorium on the Central College Campus in Pella, Iowa. Admission is free and the performance is open to the public.
Christmas Candlelight Concerts
This annual Central tradition takes place both in Des Moines and Pella. The theme for this years’ celebration is “Oh Devine Night.”
Des Moines Concert
The Des Moines concert features the college’s A Cappella Choir and Chamber Singers under the direction of Mark Babcock, associate professor of music and director of choirs. He is a 1991 Central graduate. The ensembles will perform “O Come, All Ye Faithful” by John Rutter; “Ukrainian Alleluia” by Craig Courtney; “O Holy Night” by Wyatt Rath, a 2018 Central graduate and vocal music teacher at West Sioux Community School District in Hawarden, Iowa; “Hodie Christus Natus Est” by Jan Peeterswoon Sweelinck; and “Before the Marvel of this Night” by Carl Schalk.
The concert will take place at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6, at Westminster Presbyterian Church, 4114 Allison Ave., in Des Moines, Iowa. Tickets are $13 for adults, $11 for senior citizens and students, and free with Central ID. Tickets are available at events.central.edu.
The Pella concert features the college’s A Cappella Choir and Chamber Singers under the direction of Mark Babcock, associate professor of music and director of choirs. He is a 1991 Central graduate.
Also performing that evening are Kris DeWild, lecturer of music and accompanist; the Handbell Choir under the direction of Kris DeWild; the College Community Orchestra under the direction of Sam Stapleton, adjunct instructor of music; and the Flute Ensemble under the direction of Megan Hofeldt, adjunct instructor of music.
Pieces performed include “Ukrainian Alleluia” by Craig Courtney; “Out of the Orient Crystal Skies” by Zgodova; “Run Ye Shepherds to the Light” by Michael Haydn; “O Holy Night” arranged by Wyatt Rath; “Hodie Christus Natus Est” by Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck.
Performances are at 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7, and Saturday, Dec. 8, in Douwstra Auditorium on Central’s campus in Pella, Iowa.
Concert tickets: $13 adults, $11 seniors 65+, $11 students under age 22, free with a Central ID. Tickets are available at events.central.edu.
A holiday dinner will be served immediately before the concerts in Pella on both Friday, Dec. 7, and Saturday, Dec. 8, in the Graham Conference Center on the Central College campus in Pella, Iowa. A cash bar will begin at 6 p.m.; dinner is at 6:30 p.m. Dinner tickets are $16 for adults, $8.50 children under 10, free children under 4. Reservations required by Friday, Nov. 30. Tickets are available at events.central.edu.