Hilo Community Chorus to perform at First United Protestant Church

  • Courtesy photo Hilo Community Chorus rehearses for it December concert.

Hilo Community Chorus, directed by Tom McAlexander, will present “Carols for Christmas” at 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, at First United Protestant Church in Hilo.

Walter Greenwood will assist on piano and organ. Featured soloists are drawn from the chorus.


The concert is free and open to the public. Donations will be graciously accepted.

Hilo Community Chorus has offered a seasonal concert every December since 2008. All are invited to join in an afternoon of reflective and refreshing musical experiences.

The concert will feature works from two composers.

Sir David Valentine Willcocks (1919-2015) started as a chorister and progressed through a career as chorus master, organ master, composer and decorated hero of World War II. His choral arrangements ground audiences in tradition and familiarity with a few surprises and sophisticated departures from the expected.

John Milford Rutter (1945-present) was likewise educated in England, also beginning his career as a chorister. Notable in his long career as prolific composer and sought-after conductor is his founding of the Cambridge Singers. Rutter’s original carols are influenced by traditional English and French styles. They also reach into popular idioms of the 20th century that delight the ear without losing the deep spirituality and emotion associated with carols for the Christmas season.

Carols celebrating the birth of Christ originated with medieval nativity plays attributed first to the influence of St.Francis of Assisi in the early 13th century. These plays became the foundation for teaching scripture to a broad spectrum of society, using drama, costume and music.

Surviving the centuries, Christmas carols have evolved from simple 14th century chants and the use of dual languages — Latin for the church and a local tongue for the people — to the melodies associated with traditional and modern Christmas celebrations.

Hilo Community Chorus is a nonprofit organization.


Find more information about the chorus at

First United Protestant Church is located at 1350 Waianuenue Ave.

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