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Westminster Choir College Honors Cherished Tradition with Readings & Carols' 30th Anniversary Celebration

A Tempo this Saturday (12/3 at 7 pm) looks ahead to this year's Evening of Readings and Carols performances by the choirs at Westminster Choir College, which returns in full force after the pandemic and the college's relocation from its historic Princeton home to the campus of Rider University in Lawrenceville, NJ.

An Evening of Readings & Carols has been a Princeton area mainstay during the holiday season since its first 1992 performance, and this year its ensembles are joyfully rehearsing for this year's production at Princeton University Chapel following several years of change and transition. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the event was presented virtually the first year, and then with a slightly scaled-down version last year. The school, its faculty, alumni and students have also struggled with the renown choir college's relocation from its historic home in Princeton to the campus of Rider University in Lawrenceville, NJ, of which it has been a part since the 1980.

A Tempo host Rachel Katz this past week visited one of the rehearsals by the Westminster Symphonic Choir in Gill Chapel, one of the venues that has been refurbished by Rider to accommodate the choir college's needs. In several interviews, students expressed their excitement about the upcoming performance, and how much it means to the choir college community as a cherished Westminster traditions as they seek to retain the school's unique identity. This week's program features a conversation with Westminster Director of Choral Studies James Jordan, who first introduced the idea of Readings and Carols back in 1992, and interviews with several students, about the importance of Readings and Carols and how they have been dealing with transition and change at Westminster.

This year's performances will be held Friday Dec. 9 and Saturday Dec. 10 at 8 pm at Princeton University Chapel. The program will be recorded and aired as a radio broadcast on WWFM later this month, and potentially on public television next year.

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