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VWU Celebrates the Holiday Season

A Wesleyan Christmas and tree lighting ceremony kick off the annual campus traditions

University News | December 5, 2023

View the Tree Lighting Photo Gallery

‘Tis the season for holiday cheer! Students decked in antlers, decorative glasses, and other festive garb, gathered near the Monumental Chapel for the annual Christmas tree lighting on December 1. While enjoying hot chocolate and cookies, they were treated to a reading of “Twas the Night Before Finals,” and participated in a friendly, boisterous competition— while singing “The Twelve Days of Christmas.” Santa and Mrs. Claus even made an appearance at the Friday afternoon event.

Following the campus tree lighting, Virginia Wesleyan University orchestra and choirs celebrated the season with a collection of classic and modern holiday favorites, as they joined together in the Susan S. Goode Fine and Performing Arts Center for another beloved University tradition: A Wesleyan Christmas. 
VWU Orchestra, under direction of Justin Stanley, performed renditions of “Sleigh Ride” and “O Come, O Come Emmanuel,” as well as “A Holiday Celebration” as arranged by Michael Story.
Bravura choir, under direction of student conductors Aidan Foley ‘26, Erin Andrews ‘25, Aviana Medina ‘26, and Taylor Mercier ‘24, presented “Tidings of Comfort and Joy,” “Bring A Torch, Jeanette, Isabella,” and “Cantate Hodie.” As a special treat, these selections also included “Christmas Lullaby” as arranged by VWU Applied Music Specialist George Stone, who also accompanied the piece. 
Camerata and Vox Vera Choirs, under direction of Bryson Mortensen, sang holiday favorites such as “The Christmas Song,” “Little Saint Nick,” and “Angels We Have Heard On High.”
In an artistic collaboration between vocalists and instrumentalists, VWU Orchestra and Camerata choir combined for a performance of “Christmas Day” as arranged by Gustav Holst.
The presentation of holiday classics and carols is one of many great traditions in the performing arts at Virginia Wesleyan University.
Adapted from a feature written by Brooke Underwood '24.
Learn more about The Arts at VWU.