The Texas Tenors were the guest vocalists at two performances of the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Symphony Orchestra’s annual holiday program recently in the Great Hall at the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center. Jason Weinberger was the conductor.
The orchestra played two fine Christmas works: one a sprightly arrangement of holiday songs, and the other a solemn, dignified meditation on Christmas by Rimsky Korsakov.
The rest of the evening belonged to the Texas Tenors with the orchestra as accompaniment. The Tenors are entertainers par excellence. They have good clear voices which harmonize beautifully. They sing in an impressive variety of styles, and they have the good fortune to possess three distinct, but completely engaging, personalities. In short, they are outstanding showmen. No wonder they are immensely popular wherever they go. Their record indicates that they are on their way to achieving a solid reputation worldwide.
We see this on every hand. Here they played before two sold-out houses. A woman sitting next to me had come up from Des Moines to attend both matinee and evening shows. A group drove up from St. Louis to hear the Tenors, and for one member of the group, it was the 60th time she had heard the trio perform live!
Each number we heard was pleasing and engaging. They even had us enjoying and clapping the beat for that old chestnut, “Deep in the Heart of Texas.”
Two of the many pieces the Tenors sang were especially dramatic and moving. To “ Oh, Holy Night” and
“Somewhere” (from “West Side Story”), they gave a passionate, operatic reading.
In recent concerts, the WCFSO has made good use of colorful and informative images and videos on a screen at the back of the stage. This works nicely, I believe, and contributes to the success of a concert, especially a popular one like this.
This concert was a far cry from WCFSO’s accustomed holiday shows. But no matter, this one was a huge success. After how many concerts do we see a long, long line of customers waiting just for a chance to meet (or be photographed with) the guest artists?