KSU’s Bailey School of Music to honor benefactor in Holiday Concert

Upright stringed instruments with Santa caps

Photo courtesy of Kennesaw State University

KSU’s Bailey School of Music distributed the following announcement for their upcoming holiday concert:

Kennesaw State University’s Bailey School of Music will present the 2023 Holiday Concert honoring Robert S. “Bob” Geer, a distinguished benefactor, on Sat., Dec. 2 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. An annual tradition, the concert features over 200 KSU students and faculty performing as part of the Choirs, Wind Ensemble, and Symphony Orchestra. This year’s lineup includes holiday classics, big works from the classical canon, and even music from some very famous holiday movies.

Julia Bullard, Interim Director of the Bailey School of Music, says that it’s like a “celebratory, end-of-semester holiday party! We are so excited to put on this concert and share this special, seasonal music with our community.” Children may want to sing along to a medley of songs from the popular children’s movie “Frozen,” or dance to Tchaikovsky’s “Pas De Deux” from the Nutcracker.

It will be hard not to dance to Kevin Phillip Johnson’s “Children, Go Where I Send Thee,” featuring the KSU Chamber Singers and Percussion. Other selections include “Greensleeves” and “Mary, Did You Know?” Bullard says that “Mary, Did You Know” has become “very popular, and it is a wonderful arrangement. There’s really something for everyone at this concert.” In a lively rendition of David Eddleman’s “Bidi Bom” for Hanukkah, the combined choirs will be accompanied by the marimba.

Each half of the program features choirs, one of the two largest wind ensembles, and the Symphony Orchestra. Director of Orchestra Studies and Associate Professor of Music Nathaniel F. Parker explains that the selections for choirs “represent a wide range of styles, from sacred and secular holiday traditions both new and old. One fun highlight is ‘Jingle Bells Forever,’ written in the style of Sousa’s famous march, ‘Stars and Stripes Forever.’”

The Holiday Concert would not be complete without the 1948 edition of “Sleigh Ride” from Leroy Anderson. The Wind Ensemble will perform this popular tune in dedication to Robert S. “Bob” Geer, a transformational benefactor for the College of the Arts whose support will positively impact arts students in life-changing ways.

“Bob grew up with a passion for the arts, particularly art, dance, and music. In fact, during the Great Depression, his family paid for his piano lessons with products from their farm. We are so pleased to be able to honor Bob with this concert and to dedicate ‘Sleigh Ride’ to him,” says Harrison Long, Interim Dean of the College of the Arts.

While it may not a wonderland of snow in Georgia, that doesn’t stop residents from gliding along with a song of a wintry fairy land. The warm venue, Morgan Concert Hall in the Dr. Bobbie Bailey & Family Performance Center, will be festively decorated, and patrons are encouraged to wear holiday attire. Bullard says that even ugly holiday sweaters are encouraged.

The 2023 Holiday Concert will be held on Sat., Dec. 2 at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Tickets are available online or by calling 470-578-6650.