NE Texas Choral Society director predicts snow, sets June auditions

By TERRY MATHEWS, News-Telegram Arts Editor

June 6, 2008 - Carol Allen, music director of the Northeast Texas Choral Society, is a woman of many talents, but who knew she could forecast the weather?

"It's going to snow the first weekend in December," Allen said Tuesday. "If it's not snowing outside, I promise it will be snowing inside the Hopkins County Regional Civic Center."

According to Allen, the theme for this year's choral society holiday show, held the first weekend in December, is 'White Christmas. Allen said the theme calls for "1940s type costuming and staging." During the program, the choral society has set aside a moment to remember veterans and acknowledge troops on active duty, some of whom may be home for the holidays. The program will include a time for the children to come onstage in their Christmas finest and sing some favorite carols, and Allen hints at the possibity of some extra-special entertainment.

"I think we're going to have a few special moments in the show," Allen promised. "It's likely that our 'paradocs' - Dr. Chuck Jones and Dr. I.L. Baucom IV - will be featured in the show, which always gives us a moment of grace and hilarity."

In order to get a jump on the program's costuming and staging needs, Allen has decided to hold auditions on Saturday, June 14, from 10 a.m. until 1 p.m. in the choir room at First United Methodist Church. No prepared audition piece is necessary, and an accompanist will be provided. Mid-August auditions are also scheduled.

"While the ability to read music is helpful, it is not a prerequisite," Allen explained. "You do not need to make an appointment; just come and don't be jittery. We have a great time at auditions."

Singers rehearse every Monday night for two hours, starting in August until the concert.

First semester singer Linda Mabe plans to be there.

"Sitting in the audience and listening to the sounds of the Northeast Texas Choral Society is great," Mabe said. "But it does not even compare to actually singing with and becoming a part of the lyrical magic of their voices. Monday night rehearsals can not start soon enough for me."

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