Lauri Lyster, left, and Lori Pappajohn are two of the mainstays of the ‘Winter Harp’ ensemble. (Submitted)

VIDEO: Celebrate magic of the holidays as Winter Harp returns to Cowichan Sunday

Wonderful Winter Harp is back at the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre on Sunday, Dec. 8 starting at 2 p.m.

This unusual presentation is as popular as ever with Valley music lovers. It’s a “must-see” ticket on the holiday calendar: an ethereal concert experience that captures the spirit of the season with many audiences returning year after year.

Join this talented group of musicians, singers, and storytellers for a mystical journey into the heart of winter.

Winter Harp is a Christmas masterpiece, offering special sights and sounds.

“One of the reasons Winter Harp has been a yearly success is that it gives people Christmas,” director Lori Pappajohn says. “The familiar carols and the touching stories take people home — home to Christmas, with its rich and cherished memories.”

But, there’s more. Unique and beautiful instruments, velvet and satin costumes and gowns, candles, backdrops of cathedrals and snow add to the special atmosphere.

The watching crowd is transported back to the High Middle Ages.

“Beautiful harps combine with flutes, rare medieval instruments, percussion, poetry and song to wrap you snugly in the silken cloak of Christmas. Medieval carols, rare carols and familiar carols will have your heart singing,” she said.

Concertgoers can enjoy the ethereal-sounding bass psaltery (the only one like it in the world), the organistrum (an early form of the hurdy-gurdy), and even the intriguing sound of the Swedish nyckelharpa.

Presenting such a performance takes a lot of work; some 200 strings must be tuned before each performance and during the intermission.

Winter Harp was founded in 1993 by Pappajohn and poet/narrator Alan Woodland in a small chapel in Vancouver.

Since then it has grown to include many cities in its annual December tours of western Canada.

There’s also a special treat in the lobby during this performance. Marilyn Rummel and eight harpists will be serenading audiences.

Tickets are $36 each so treat yourself and your friends. Reserve your seats in person at the Cowichan Ticket Centre, or by phone at 250-748-7529 or online at www.cowichanpac.ca. There are also a few eyeGO seats available at $5 each for card-carrying students. (eyeGO seats must be purchased in person at the Cowichan Ticket Centre.)



lexi.bainas@cowichanvalleycitizen.com

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