Choral Society sponsoring art contest for Christmas concert

By TERRY MATHEWS, News-Telegram Arts Editor

Oct. 28, 2008 - Area residents with artistic talents are lining up to enter the Northeast Texas Choral Society's "cover art" contest.

The winning artwork will grace the cover of the group's "White Christmas" program, and all entries will be displayed in the lobby of the Hopkins County Regional Civic Center during the Choral Society's two Christmas concerts on Dec. 6 and 7.

"We're trying to get people in the mood for a white Christmas," said contest committee member and singer Linda Riddle. "The show is going to be a flashback to the 1940s and 50s. Think a Norman Rockwell Christmas and you have the idea."

Although there is no cash prize for the winner, the honor will be in having their artwork on the publicity posters and the cover of this year's program.

Artists can use any medium, but the project must be in black and white. It must not be larger than 11 inches by 17 inches, and the deadline is "pretty quick," according to Riddle.

"We'd really like to have everyone's entries by the first of November," Riddle said.

Entries can be mailed to P.O. Box 66, Sulphur Springs, TX 75483, or can be dropped off at the office at First United Methodist Church.

Some 5th graders from Douglas Intermediate School have already completed the project and turned in their artwork, according to Riddle.

"Some students from Como-Pickton have also sent in some things," Riddle said. "Individual adults have also entered."

According to NETCS Music Director Carol Allen, preparations for the show are "coming along nicely."

"Everybody is working hard," Allen said. "While the forecast may say shorts and T-shirts, the music says 'Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.'"

The theme for this year's show offers an opportunity to look at Christmases past.

"The music is really nostalgic," Riddle said. "It's wonderful. We're also going to have a special tribute to the armed forces. A lot of our men will be dressed in vintage uniforms. Even some of our guys who are retired are going to try and squeeze back into their uniforms. And, of course, there will be a couple of surprises."

Like last year's program, there will also be an opportunity for children to participate in the show and to sing with the group.

NETCS is more than 100 voices strong this season and Allen says "the energy, sound and excitement when that many voices sing is just phenomenal."

A billboard advertising the show is up next to Chili's. Singers have been selling ads for the program, and Allen says, "the group is excited about the cover art contest."

Tickets for the show are $10 and will be available from any NETCS member, local banks and at the Civic Center, beginning next week.

For more information, visit the NETCS website at www.netchoral.org.

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