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The Bijou Orchestra Presents its Annual Holiday Pops

Seven Vocal Soloists and Members of Three Choirs to Join in Performances

November 29, 2007       Leave a Comment
By: Julie McCallum, Entertainment Editor

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The Holiday Spirit will be lifted in song when The Bijou Orchestra presents its fifth annual Holiday Pops a Celebration of Song.

Performances will be given Wednesday, December 5 and Friday, December 7 at 7:30 PM in the historic First Presbyterian Church on Center Avenue in Bay City.

The Holiday Pops is sponsored by Bay Regional Medical Center as it has been since the very first year.

Seven Vocal Soloists and Members of Three Choirs to Join in Performances. Leo Najar, Artistic Director of the Bijou Orchestra, said "We are proud of the mixture of music we present on the Holiday Pops." Najar continued, "This year's program includes familiar favorites like the Waltz of the Flowers from 'The Nutcracker Ballet' and several sections of 'Messiah' including the Hallelujah Chorus."

Popular music is as much a part of the holiday tradition as classical music, and presenting several favorites including 'The Christmas Song' and 'White Christmas'. Modern favorites like 'Blue Christmas' and 'Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer' will also be on the show. Also there is an annual klezmer set with Andy Rogers in which we celebrate the Feast of Chanukah.

There are seven vocal soloists appearing on the program. Baritone Rob Clark has appeared with The Bijou for many years as the "Monster of Ceremonies" in the Halloween Spooktacular, as well as other Bijou concerts. Kurt Miller was heard this fall in 'Note Able Women' and is a noted local actor and performer.

Katie Travis is a soprano from Bay City who is currently studying voice at Central Michigan University. Angela and Tiffany Davies are sisters from Pinconning who will make their debut with the orchestra.

Tenor Mark Mooningham is actually a member of the Bijou Orchestra where he normally plays viola and violin. This will be his first time to sing with the orchestra. The same is also true of Kelly McDermott, flutist with The Bijou who is also a singer with the Celtic ensemble Cairn to Cairn.

The Holiday Pops wouldn't be complete without choral music. The Varsity Choir and Resounding Harmony from Central High School are under the direction of Amy Hughes. They will be joined for the Hallelujah Chorus by members of the First Presbyterian Chancel Choir.

All seats for the Holiday Pops are unreserved and cost $17. Student tickets are $10. Tickets may be purchased online at or by phone at (989) 892-4200 or in person at the Bay Musical Arts Box Office: 917 Washington Avenue, Bay City, Michigan, 48708.

Box-office hours are 1-5PM Tuesday through Friday. Tickets are also available at the door.

The Bijou Orchestra takes its name from the Bijou Theater, one of the earliest Bay City theaters, which later became known as the Bay and eventually the State. The ensemble is composed of thirteen outstanding musicians drawn from Michigan and beyond to perform in this challenging medium in which every player is a soloist. The orchestra is supported in part by grants from the Michigan Council for the Arts and Cultural Affairs, the Kantzler Foundation, the Russell H. & Maxine E. Smith Foundation, and the Bay Area Community Foundation. Major corporate contributors include the SC Johnson Corporation, Dow Corning, Bay Regional Medical Center, OmniSource and Thelen Auto Group.

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