Stairwell Carollers perform in Stittsville on June 17

The Stairwell Carollers

(press release)

The Stairwell Carollers are proud to present an afternoon freewill offering concert at Stittsville United Church, Saturday June 17th, at 2:30pm.   The concert is a “sparking initiative” hosted by the Stittsville United Church and will feature a variety of madrigals, masses, motets and modern pieces ranging from the Renaissance to Contemporary.

With sacred and secular repertoire from all eras, this concert has something for all choral music fans and aficionados.  Highlights will be the Missa brevis by Lotti, their most viewed sacred work on YouTube, as well as Fauré’s Cantique de Jean Racine, Lauridsen’s Contre qui Rose, Whittacre’s Sleep and many more. The repertoire also includes an original work by their own director Pierre Massie, Qui creavit celum.

Pierre founded the group in 1977, singing Christmas carols in the stairwells of residences at the University of Ottawa during exam time.  The choir would start at the top of the residence stairwell and work their way to the bottom, attracting the attention of students who would emerge from studying in their rooms to listen to the carols.  The group also performed everywhere in Ottawa, in malls, on buses, carolling along the market and sparks street.

It was during one of their impromptu performances at Bayshore shopping center that Stittsviller Gord Atkinson, then the voice of CFMO radio, heard the choir and invited them to sing live on CFMO for their Christmas Exchange Telethon.  It was during this first appearance on radio with Gord Atkinson that the group got its name.  There was a little air space at the beginning of the broadcast and the group was asked its name at the last minute. Up until that point, the choir, then only ten singers, did not have a name.  The Stairwell Carollers was quickly suggested, based on its beginnings singing in stairwells, and that has been the choir’s name ever since.  Mr. Atkinson also had a lot of involvement in the choir’s production of a fundraising album for Ronald McDonald House in 1986, an initiative which raised over $53,000.

Beginning in September 2017, The Stairwell Carollers will celebrate their 40th year of song in the National Capital Region. To commemorate this milestone, they have many ideas for events, workshops and activities. Any offering you may decide to give at this concert goes toward helping make these initiatives a reality.

There are several levels of donations available and some come with perks.  More information is included on our website at HELP US REACH OUR GOAL


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