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HYE makes sweet music for Cabaret

February 7th, 2012 2:12 am by Staff Report

HYE makes sweet music for Cabaret

'Music of the Night' is the theme of the Highlands Youth Ensemble's sixth annual Valentine Cabaret, set for 6 p.m., Feb. 17 at Central Presbyterian Church in Bristol, Va. Courtesy of MECCA

The Highlands Youth Ensemble, the premier high school choir of the Mountain Empire Children’s Choral Academy, will present its sixth annual Valentine Cabaret at 6 p.m., Friday, Feb. 17 at Central Presbyterian Church, Bristol, Va.


This year’s theme is “Music of the Night,” and guests will be treated to a cabaret-style show along with dinner catered by Chef Mike Ellis and a selection of Broadway-themed gift baskets up for grabs.


An encore show-only presentation will be held at 7:30 p.m., Monday, Feb. 20 at Barter Theatre’s Stage II in Abingdon, Va.


“‘Music of the Night’ is going to be our best show ever,” said Jane Morison, MECCA’s artistic director. “These young singers are simply terrific, and they are ready to give you a special evening of entertainment. David Alford, Barter Theatre’s artistic director for education, has coached our singers on their presentation, and there is nobody better at working with young singers and actors. He really brings out their best.”


Morison said patrons should be prepared to open their wallets and purses for a chance to take home one of the themed gift baskets.


“In keeping with our Broadway theme, we have baskets representing shows like ‘Hairspray,’ ‘Little Shop of Horrors,’ ‘Grease’ and many, many others,” she said. “There will also be our ever-popular Barter Theatre basket with many Barter items, including two tickets to any show. There are just too many baskets to list this year. If your Valentine has a favorite show, we probably have a basket for it. Our donors have been sO generous.”


Tickets are $20 for the dinner theatre on Feb. 17 and $10 for the encore show on Feb. 20. Seating is limited at both venues.


For reservations, call (276) 698-7127 or email HYE? cabaret@gmail.com? . Reservation deadline for the Feb 17 dinner theatre is Feb. 10.


Having previously participated in the Field Studies International program under the baton of André Thomas, the Highlands Youth Ensemble made its second trip to Carnegie Hall in June 2010 to sing the Rutter “Requiem” under the baton of Rutter himself.


The choir’s past honors include participation in the International Chamber Choir competition in Pécs, Hungary in 2007; hosting an International Folksong Exchange in 2008; and annually sending singers to National Honor Choirs at the Organization of American Kodály Educators national conference. This year, 10 HYE singers will travel to Phoenix, Ariz., to sing in the OAKE National Concert Honor Choir — accounting for more than 10 percent of its members.


HYE was also invited back to Pécs, Hungary, as honored guests when Pécs received the designation “European City of Culture” in the summer of 2010.


HYE has collaborated with Symphony of the Mountains and Voices of the Mountains, and has been proud to be invited to sing for the Christmas Candlelight Evenings at Biltmore Estate for the past nine years.


For more information about the Highlands Youth Ensemble and Mountain Empire Children’s Choral Academy, visit www.mec? c ? a c a d e m y. o r g .




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