The Pipes of Christmas will celebrate its twentieth anniversary season with performances in New York and New Jersey this weekend. The holiday favorite opens on Saturday, December 15 at Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church, located at 921 Madison Avenue (at 73rd Street) for a 2pm performance. The concert moves across the Hudson River on Sunday, December 16 toCentral Presbyterian Church located at 70 Maple Street in Summit, NJ with performances at 2pm and 7pm.
For those weary of the ceaseless stream of secular seasonal music from department stores to TV, the Pipes of Christmas offers a spiritual and traditional take on the season that connects concertgoers to the holiday in a fresh, meaningful way. The show features tunes such as O Come, O Come Emmanuel, Joy to the World, and Amazing Grace, all performed live on pipes and drums, harp and fiddle, and organ and brass. Not only does the performance define Christmas cheer, but also it inspires those of Celtic descent to retrace and reconnect to their ancestry.
The concert presents the music of Christmas accompanied by readings taken from the Celtic literature of Scotland, Ireland, and Wales. Featured performers include James Robinson and Andrew Weir from the film “Braveheart,” Gaelic Mod champion harpist Jennifer Port of Golspie, Scotland, guitarist Steve Gibb from Inverness, Scotland, Glenfiddich Scottish Fiddle Champion, Calum Pasqua, piper Ben Power from Broadway’s “Come From Away,”and the Pipe Major Kevin Ray Blandford Memorial Pipe Band from Redlands, CA.
Proceeds Support Scholarships and More
Proceeds from the concert support an extensive music scholarship program, which includes annual gifts to the National Piping Centre and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (both located in Glasgow, Scotland) the Gaelic College of Nova Scotia and Summit High School in New Jersey.
Proceeds also support the Society’s sponsorship of the US National Scottish Harp Championship, the Gaelic Literature Competition at the Royal National Mod and an annual academic research prize at Sabhal Mòr Ostaig, Scotland’s Gaelic college on the Isle of Skye.
Named one of New York City’s “Top Ten” holiday events, the concert is made possible by a generous gift from the Grand Summit Hotel in Summit, NJ.
About “The Pipes of Christmas”
Since making its debut in 1999, The Pipes of Christmas has played to standing room only audiences. Now a cherished holiday event, the concert provides audiences with a stirring and reverent celebration of the Christmas season and the Celtic spirit. Audience-goers return year after year to experience the program, many reporting that the Pipes of Christmas has become part of their family’s annual Christmas tradition.
The concert has been lavished with critical acclaim. In his review for Classical New Jersey Magazine, Paul Somers wrote, “The whole evening was constructed to introduce gem after gem and still have a finale which raised the roof. In short, it was like a well constructed fireworks show on the Glorious Fourth. The Westfield Leader described the concert as “a unique sound of power and glory nowhere else to be found.”