The Chorus Urbanus Productions Feel the Magic of Christmas concert drew a full house at Saint George’s Basilica on a relatively calm winter night on Sunday 15 December . Smiles were plentiful as patrons came out of the cold into a warm and inviting sacred enclave that was buzzing with yuletide greetings and decor. Filled with long-time friends, new acquaintances, and loving families, this was truly a magical gathering rich with kindness, affection and good will.
The basilica soon became alive with holiday cheer as the protagonists of the evening flocked together to present a glorious feast of Christmas Music. The Urbanus Festive Orchestra, Chorus Urbanus and the Urbanus Junior Section under the elegant and seasoned direction of Dr John Galea , delivered heartwarming evergreens like Candlelight Carol, When a Child is born and the Little Drummer Boy together with the happy touch of new repertoire that included When Love was Born, Forza Gesù, Born on Christmas Day, and choral classics like Karl Kempter’s ‘Gloria’ from his Pastoralmesse preceeded by the ‘Pifa’ from Handel’s Messiah. There is something special about Christmas music and the images they create in your mind’s eye. Ding Dong Merrily on High and Believe are two pieces that really transport you to a holiday wonderland, especially when you hear them performed live with such gusto from Chorus Urbanus and the Urbanus Junior Section. Smiles and nods of approval could be seen across the audience when each carol was given an emotionally saturated interpretation. But the fitting climax was reached with the Ukrainian Bell Carol, Jingle Bells and Adeste Fidelis, the latter attracting a standing ovation for all the performers. This carol was encored, earning a spontaneous second standing ovation. The evening concluded the 2019 offering of the Feel the Magic Project that is generously supported by The Gozo Cultural Support Programme (Ministry for Gozo) and the Arts Council Malta.
(Photo Credits: Terry Camilleri (MGOZ) and Joseph Attard)