Choral Society's Christmas Concert Goes Virtual

One of Durango's favorite traditions, the Durango Choral Society's annual Christmas Concert, will head online with traditional favorites from past concerts as well as a brand-new, virtual performance compiled with the magic of technology. And you can watch it at your leisure through the holiday season!

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The Choral Society won't let little things

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like no rehearsals, no
stage, and no audience

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stop it from presenting

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its annual Christmas concert this season.

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You're watching the local news network

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brought to you by the Overlook
at Edgemont Highlands.

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I'm Wendy Graham Settle.

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The Durango Choral Society,

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like most performing arts groups,

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hasn't offered a live concert

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since the pandemic arrived
in Colorado last March.

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But that hasn't stopped
director Linda Mack Berven

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and her choirs from performing.

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They've just moved to a virtual stage,

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thanks to a complex process
of recording and editing

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that Mack Berven calls a labor of love.

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The science isn't allowing
us to sing together,

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and given particularly the
age range of our adults,

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which basically runs
from 18 years old to 85,

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we don't have a place to rehearse.

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We don't have a safe area
that we can really do this,

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and we don't have an audience.

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So that's why we knew
we had to go virtual,

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and we wanted to do something.

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Mack Berven pulled together
the first virtual concert

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in October as part of a season

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she has themed Comfort and Joy.

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The October Comfort concert
included a repertoire of songs

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that expressed hope for the future.

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More than 200 audience
members logged on to watch.

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For October, the Choral
Society members were invited.

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They were given music all online,

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and they each recorded their
own voice parts separately,

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submitted it to me and Gordon Thomas,

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our technical guy, guru.

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And we mixed together all
of those individual voices

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into a whole.

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And it was amazing how
beautiful it sounded.

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We filmed me conducting,

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and we recorded a piano accompaniment,

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and then we made voice
tracks so that each person

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could sing along at home.

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They had to use their earphones

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and sing into their
device all by themselves.

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And then we put together
40 different recordings.

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And one of the biggest
challenges, for example,

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in choral singing, there
are consonant endings.

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So we had to put all the
S's in the right place,

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and all the breaths in the right place.

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It's a labor of love.

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And it's a labor that
takes a great deal of time,

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many more hours than you might think,

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but it's so worth it,

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and it's the best we can do right now.

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The Christmas concert
will include a compilation

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of video recordings of
individual holiday songs

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from the past 10 years
of Christmas concerts,

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along with a new virtual rendition

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of "Angels We Have Heard on High"

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performed by the 17 member women's choir.

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Mack Berven said Santa may
even make an appearance.

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For the holiday season,

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we're going with all the
city market favorites.

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And what I mean by that is
every time I go shopping,

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someone says to me in the aisle,

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"Now, Linda, are you going
to program 'O Holy Night'

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"this year," or some other piece.

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So I've gone through 10 years of videos

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and audios from our past concerts,

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and I've picked out all
the favorite things.

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And of course, this
concert will be called Joy.

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The concert will be available
beginning at 3:00 PM

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on Sunday, December 6th.

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Once you purchase a ticket,

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you'll be sent a link to
the virtual performance,

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which you can watch anytime
between December 6th

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and the end of the month.

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Simply connect your computer
into your television,

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and enjoy the concert

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like a live television holiday special.

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To learn more about the
Durango Choral Society's

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virtual holiday concert,
and to purchase tickets,

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visit DurangoChoralSociety.org.

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Thanks for watching this edition
of the local news network.

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Listen to our stories any time, anywhere

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from your favorite podcast app.

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I'm Wendy Graham Settle.

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