Nowell Sing We Clear on Dec. 6
Nowell Sing We Clear will present a “A Pageant of Mid-Winter Carols at the Dublin Community Church on Dec. 6, at 8 p.m.
Nowell Sing We Clear, with its unusual songs, carols, stories, and customs, has toured every year since 1975. Drawn mostly from English-language folk traditions, the songs tell both a version of the events and characters involved in the Christmas story and detail the customs which make up the twelve magical days following the return of the light at the winter solstice. Many of these ancient customs are the basis of the today’s holiday traditions, such as visiting and feasting, gift-giving, carol singing from door-to-door and the adorning of houses and churches with garlands of evergreen.
Nowell Sing We Clear celebrates Christmas as it was known for centuries in Britain and North America and as it continues in many places to the present. The songs come from an age when the midwinter season was a time for joyous celebration and vigorous expression of older, perhaps pagan, religious ideas. There is not always a clear line between these and the rejoicing at the birth of Jesus bringing a fresh light into the world at this dark midwinter time.
A special and unusual treat is the enactment of a Mummers Play from Kentucky. Performed in the traditional manner, the play is typical of folk dramas which survive to this day throughout Britain and North America symbolizing and portraying the death of the land at midwinter and its subsequent rebirth in the spring.
While much of the singing is done in unaccompanied style, the pageant is also stamped with the energetic dance band sound of fiddle, button accordion, electric piano, drums, and concertina. The audience will be supplied with songsheets and encouraged to sing along.
Performers are John Roberts and Tony Barrand, widely known for their lively presentations of English folk songs, and Fred Breunig and Andy Davis, well known in New England as dance callers and musicians.
Admission is $15 for adults and $12 for senior, youth or advance ticket sales. For more information or to reserve tickets, visit www.monadnockfolk.org.