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The renowned Archdiocesan Cathedral Choir, Youth Choir and Orchestra, under the direction of Maestro Costas Tsourakis, presented the 46th Annual Cathedral Christmas Concert, ‘The Sounds of Christmas’ on December 17. (Photo by Eleni Sakellis)
NEW YORK – The renowned Archdiocesan Cathedral Choir, Youth Choir and Orchestra, under the direction of Maestro Costas Tsourakis, presented the 46th Annual
Cathedral Christmas Concert, ‘The Sounds of Christmas’ on December 17.
The Very Rev. Archimandrite Chrysostomos Gilbert, Dean of the Archdiocesan Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, gave the welcoming remarks, noting that “we are so blessed to have such an amazing music ministry program here at the Cathedral.”
He then introduced Maestro Tsourakis who thanked everyone for coming and pointed out that the evening’s selections “focused on the joy, devotion, and awe-inspiring scenes of the Nativity.”
Tsourakis also noted that this is his first Christmas season as a father which has afforded him the opportunity to reflect on “the child in the manger” who “brought salvation to us all.”
“Tonight also features the Cathedral Youth Choir whose youthful voices truly embody the spirit of Christmas,” Tsourakis said and then gave his remarks in Greek as well.
The concert included the world premiere arrangement of ‘The Katavasies of Christmas,’ composed by Dawn Helene and orchestrated by Associate Conductor Hilary Baboukis, the Apolytikion of the Nativity ‘Your Birth, O Christ’ by Dr. John Baboukis, carols featuring the Cathedral Youth Choir, and some of the most famous songs and hymns of Christmas, in both English and Greek arrangements.
Hilary Baboukis conducted ‘We Three Kings’ which included solos by the tenors Adam Cromer and John Koch along with baritone Tsourakis. ‘O Come All Ye Faithful’ was dedicated to Fr. Gilbert in honor of his first Christmas as Dean of the Cathedral.
Among the highlights of the evening was the beautifully performed ‘Do You Hear What I Hear?’, the Cathedral Orchestra’s charming performance of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite, and the Byzantine Kalanta with the talented Lamprini Kampouras-Psyllos on kanonaki.
The concert concluded with a sing-along as Maestro Tsourakis invited everyone to join in with some help from the lyrics printed in the concert program. He also announced the new incoming Dino Anagnost Artist-in-Residence, Dr. John Baboukis, and that His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew has invited the Cathedral Choir to perform in Constantinople. Tsourakis appealed to those present for their support to help make this historic tour possible by donating to the Choir. The concert was followed by a reception in the Chiotes Family Cathedral Hall.
Among those present were His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, formerly of America, Chancellor of the Archdiocese Fr. Nektarios Papazafiropoulos who represented His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros who could not attend the concert due to his duties across the country, Fr. John Vlahos and his wife Presvytera Tina, as well as many community members and Christmas music lovers of all ages.
The annual Christmas Concert at Holy Trinity Cathedral has become a staple in the New York holiday concert scene, continuing a tradition that began with the first Cathedral Christmas Concert under the baton of the late maestro Dr. Dino Anagnost in 1976.
All proceeds from the event will benefit the Music Ministries of the Archdiocesan Cathedral of the Holy Trinity.
The Archdiocesan Cathedral Choir is led by Director of Music, Costas Tsourakis. Dawn Helene is the Cathedral’s current Dino Anagnost Artist-in-Residence.
The online broadcast of the concert will be available December 23-26.
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