by Barb Mazarakos
Nothing sets the tone of the Christmas season for me as much as music. I’m not embarrassed to admit that I eagerly flip to the local radio station when it switches to 24-hour Christmas songs (though I don’t listen to it ALL of the time until after Thanksgiving). If I’m in a funk or feeling the weight of the holiday rush, nothing can perk me up like hearing Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas” or make me sentimental the way Celine Dion’s version of “O, Holy Night” can. That’s why I can’t wait to see Christ Lutheran (and Orland Park’s) own Jonathan Beyer and his friends, Tammy Coil and Amanda Crider, as they Celebrate the Sounds of Christmas on December 13, right here at CLC.
Once the young boy who played the musical offertory and sang in the Cherub Choir, Jonathan is now a renowned performer, traveling from Amarillo to Rochester to Hong Kong (with many stops in between) this year alone. 2019 found him not only singing concerts with the Van Cliburn Festival in Fort Worth, Texas as well as classical concerts at the Chautauqua Institution, Philadelphia, Vancouver, Rochester, and Binghamton, New York, but he also taught voice at the Curtis Institute of Voice, Manhattan School of Music, Chautauqua Institution, and University of British Columbia. And his experiences didn’t stop when the music did; in 2019 he took on several non-operatic projects as well. He judged the Miss New York competition for the Miss America Organization, continued as a co-host of The Skating Lesson on YouTube, was in an episode of House Hunters on HGTV, and also filmed Worst Cooks in America (an experience that, though intense, didn’t do much to encourage his culinary skills!)
As busy as he has been this year, Jonathan is looking forward to coming home to where it all began for him, and he’s bringing two of his dearest friends along with him. Jonathan has been performing with Amanda Crider since 2007, when they won their first Opera Competitions together; Tammy Coil, once someone Jonathan did his training under back in 2003 at both Chautauqua and Curtis, has also become a good friend and someone he likes to perform with. Both ladies are new performers to the Christ Lutheran audience, and they are excited to share some of their favorite selections with us during their concert.
Part musical performance, part banter and audience interaction, this promises to be a great way to relax as we roll into the last couple of weeks before Christmas. The trio will be sharing some of their favorite Opera, Operetta, Jazz, and Musical Theater selections, as well as some Holiday Favorites. There will be something for everyone, so be sure to get your tickets now so you don’t miss out on this exciting evening! Jonathan, Amanda, and Tammy will be here Friday, December 13 at 7pm. Advanced tickets are $20 ($25 at the door) for adults and $10 for children 12 and under. Bring your family, your neighbors, your co-workers and join us as the Sounds of Christmas come home.