Making Spirits Bright Live!

Making tradition! Lifting spirits! Brightening winter’s darkness! We welcome you to Making Spirits Bright, the beloved December Holiday presentation of Vancouver Men’s Chorus. Our Making Spirits Bright – Live! compilation delivers you directly into the concert hall, brilliantly recapturing the energy and beauty of the moment as we rediscover the legendary power of choral song. This album was recorded in concert before a live audience at historic St. Paul’s Anglican Church in Vancouver’s West End between 2012 and 2014.

We have fashioned our own Vancouver Men’s Chorus tradition over the years, singing of the timeless Christmas story and all of its heavenly and earthly customs, the triumphant story of Chanukah, and the mystery of the winter solstace. North symbols of the season abound in cold and snow and the evergreen promise of Spring to come. And spreading its luminous message of cheer over all, is the universal image of light. With its flicker, twinkle, or steady glow, light drives darkness away from everyone. A festive launch to the December Holiday season of all of us, the fun of Making Spirits Bright is contagious – just the right combination of naughty and nice! So take your seat and let the show begin!

  • This Is Christmas (3:28)
  • God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen/We Three Kings (2:42)
  • Les Anges Dans Nos Campagnes (3:21)
  • A Spaceman Came Travelling (3:54)
  • O Tannenbaum (4:15)
  • The Light Returns (2:49)
  • Chanukah, Oi Chanukah (2:00)
  • Now the Bells Ring (3:37)
  • Do You Hear What I Hear? (2:49)
  • Walking In The Air (from The Snowman) (2:31)
  • The Frost (5:05)
  • The Marvelous Toy (2:36)
  • Old Toy Trains/Sleep Well, Little Children (4:24)
  • Petit Papa Noël (4:17)
  • The Christmas Tree Angel (3:31)
  • Mister Santa (2:11)
  • Love Is Christmas (3:59)
  • O Holy Night (Cantique de Noël) (4:16)
  • In The Bleak Midwinter (3:19)
  • Silent Night (3:28)

Total Time on CD: 68m32s

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Just as every concert has its outstanding number, every number has its own style. With ENCORE, we have taken care to bring each song back in its original presentation, sometimes adding a new twist to the soundscape as our spirit dictated.

In this collection, the voices of emerging Vancouver songwriters are heard alongside established pop and musical theatre writers; the rich texture of the full chorus is contrasted with abundant solo colours. Significantly, custom arrangements for the Vancouver Men’s Chorus are front and centre throughout – a signature of our work on stage and in our recordings since 1980. It is this closely-fitted connection to our choral arrangements that carries us back time and again.

Total Time on CD: 63m21s

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Making Spirits Brights

Spirits are at the centre of Making Spirits Bright, for it has become our seasonal tradition to lift our listeners’ spirits by singing of light, love, and holiday fun. Our message is carried in the many great jazz standards and popular songs of Christmas that we have come to love. Some sparkling white, some a little blue.

Over the four years of its making, several generations of VMC singers have given their voices to this recording and a number of writers and instrumentalists have also accepted our invitation to join forces with us. Guest artists on this album include celebrated jazz musicians Louise Rose, Fred Stride, and our former resident accompanist Perry Dickison.

Total Time on CD: 52m21s

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Making Spirits Brights Again

Spirit is the central word in Making Spirits Bright—the holiday theme of the Vancouver Men’s Chorus. For us, the great tradition of Making Spirits Bright has been made over time, connecting us to our near and distant roots.Making Spirits Bright Again It reflects our values and origins, and, in its interplay of ideas, chronicles the passage of time and reveals the broad spectrum of our concerns.

Along with secular seasonal songs, we sing spirited music that tells the Christmas story and a song of present day triumph of community spirit over small town discrimination. In the selections on this album, we keep our tradition going with sparkling custom arrangements. We hope that our new CD, Making Spirits Bright Again, will rekindle the holiday spirit in your home and brighten each day.

Total Time on CD: 52m8s

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With Elements, the Vancouver Men’s Chorus explores timeless ideas of life – natural elements join with philosophy to create the metaphors that express the best in our lives.

This diverse recording, the Chorus’ third, features newly-commissioned originals by Eleanor Daley and Rupert Lang together with well-known selections by other Canadian artists, including Susan Aglukark and the Rankin Family. A cornerstone of the album is “Affirmation,” by Vancouver composer Rupert Lang. This work is a setting of the personal prayer of Dr. Peter Jepson Young, the North Vancouver physician who gained strength and inner peace for his battle with AIDS by drawing on the power of the wind and the waves at Long Beach on Vancouver Island. This singular collection of music draws strength from the elements and beauty of the world around us.

Total Time on CD:56m34s

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Signature songs of the VMC are a select group of custom arrangements which have become synonymous with our name. Over the years we have found our own distinctive voice in this music, giving it expression in live performance and, now, in this recording. The search for this voice has led us into the world of women’s music, contemporary Canadian, American and South American folk music, and music from the stage. What might formerly have been untraditional music sources have now become the very traditions into which we look repeatedly for the perfect match of words and music.

Total Time on CD: 49m22s

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