Out and About: Christmas with Kennerley

The humongous brass facade of the Kotzschmar Memorial Organ has been a dominating sight in Merrill Auditorium since it was installed in 1912 as part of rebuilding Portland City Hall. For 2018 the Friends of the Kotzschmar Organ, a nonprofit support group, welcomed a new face at the instrument’s five-console keyboard: British-born James Kennerley, composer, music director and keyboard wiz, was named the 11th official municipal organist – one of only two such positions in the U.S. – and on Dec. 18 he steps on stage for his first Christmas program. “Christmas with Kennerley” is a full evening of music. While the mighty Kotzschmar, with its 7,000-odd pipes and assorted sounds from its “toy box division,” will be the center of attention, there’s much more. Metropolitan Opera soprano Ashley Emerson, a Maine native, will perform along with a cohort from ChoralArt. The Parish Ringers, a handbell choir from Brunswick, will also be featured. Ditto the Kotzschmar Festival Brass. Much of the program will be new: Kennerley is also a composer and arranger, and several of his new works will be performed for the first time. Friends of the Kotzschmar Organ present “Christmas with Kennerley” at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 18 at Merrill Auditorium at Portland City Hall. Call PortTix at 842-0800.
-Scott Andrews, The Forecaster, December 10, 2018

Click to read entire article

Buy Tickets to Christmas with Kennerley