It is one of the biggest events in Heriot-Watt’s festive calendar but this year’s Christmas Carol Celebration promises to be like no other.
The hugely popular event is regularly sold out but the ongoing disruption caused by Covid-19 meant organisers had to find a creative solution in order to host their 2020 performance.
Determined the show must go on, Heriot-Watt’s #OneWatt Voices choir have been working hard to deliver a programme of Christmas Carols helping deliver a boost of festive cheer.
The 30-minute Celebration is moving online for the first time and will be streamed via Youtube on Sunday 20 December starting at 5pm against the backdrop of the world famous, Rosslyn Chapel in Midlothian.
Dr Steve King, Director of Music at Heriot-Watt University, said this year’s event holds added significance.
“Christmas simply won’t be the same this year as a result of the pandemic and people are looking for something to capture the celebration and warm feeling of this time of year,” he said.
“The Celebration has always been popular with people and normally sells out so I’m hoping that by moving this online, there is an opportunity for more people to experience this event.
“This year really does have added significance and we want to remind people that while many elements of life are different at the moment, we can still enjoy coming together even from our homes.”
A total of 24 members of the #OneWatt Voices Choir will take part with each submitting their vocal recording from home with some doing so from as far away as Brussels and Malta.
After careful editing by Simon King, a talented musician in his own right, the virtual performance will be free to view and available via Heriot-Watt’s dedicated Youtube channel.
Ian Gardner, Director of the Rosslyn Chapel Trust, is looking forward to the event, saying: “We are delighted to continue our very positive partnership with Steve King and the wonderful choir from Heriot-Watt University through this innovative project.
“Despite all of the difficulties this year, we hope that some seasonal music, from the unique setting of Rosslyn Chapel, will bring a little Christmas cheer to many people.”
A view echoed by Dr King who finished: “By moving online we are able to open our choir to a whole new audience.
“Hopefully, this new audience will be able to join us in future years when we look forward to performing live again at our home in Heriot-Watt and at Rosslyn Chapel.”
A full list of carols to be performed at this year’s Concert are:
Veni, Veni Emanuel - plainchant
I Saw Three Ships
Born in a Poor Place
Sleep Baby Jesus
There is No Rose
Born into this World
Ding Dong Merrily on High