22 December 2009

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Natalie Cole and David McCullough Christmas Concert

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir puts together an amazing Christmas concert every year. Tickets are free, but you have to put your name in for a drawing because it's so popular!

Several weeks ago, I got an email saying my entry in the drawing had been accepted, and I smiled, knowing my dad must have done that. A few weeks later, he emailed me saying I had won and had four tickets to the concert the morning after I arrived in the states.

I could only find one person who could go with me: my mom. (My dad was lucky to have already gone earlier in the week.) The morning was snowy and beautiful as we made our way downtown.

While we were waiting for the program to start, the prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, walked in. All 21,000 audience members (yes, the house was full, or filling at that point) and the hundreds of performers went silent. If you haven't been to the enormous LDS Conference Center in Salt Lake City, you don't know how impressive it is to hear someone that far away talking. Imagine someone at the bottom of a sport arena. Natalie Cole sang with the choir and David McCullough was the narrator for the program. They were contributed greatly to the fabulous program, though we only saw the mini concert (the real thing was already over), and were very gracious when President Monson thanked them personally. They both remarked on how impressed they were with the last few days and how they had learned to love Mormons and how they felt a wish to excel among everyone they'd gotten to know.

Oh, and Richard Elliott (I think it was him) played a self-arranged medley of Nutcracker and Good King Wenceslas on the organ. Wow. He had a lot of different settings with bells and horns and his feet flew over the pedals. I want to play that too.

We did a lot of clapping at the end (Charly, who always wishes clapping was allowed in church, would have loved it), and every time I stood up I felt dizzy, but I survived thanks to my mom's elbow.

The temple looked so cool in the snow, I had to take a lot of pictures.

Thanks for signing me up for tickets, Dad.





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