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Lexington's Celebration of Song allows audience to join in

University of Kentucky Opera Theatre director Everett McCorvey began the performance nine years ago as an informal sing-along.
University of Kentucky Opera Theatre director Everett McCorvey began the performance nine years ago as an informal sing-along. Herald-Leader

What started as an informal holiday sing-along at Lexington's Victorian Square is now a sponsored, televised, emceed extravaganza at the recently renamed The Square, where the number of performers nearly equals the size of the audience.

Nine years ago, University of Kentucky Opera Theatre director Everett McCorvey started what is now known as the Alltech Celebration of Song. It's become a showcase for performers from UK and the community, including the Lexington Singers Children's Choir, the UK Steel Band, and various singers who attend UK on Alltech scholarships.

The audience still gets to sing along to favorites such as Hark! The Herald Angels Sing and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. But in between, they heard O Holy Night from opera singer Greg Turay and the work of violinist Jessica Miskelly of the UK Symphony Orchestra.

Jackie Wiseman came for the first time this year.

"It's beautiful," she said of the music and the multilevel space, where singers and audience members mingled. "I walked around to watch from different places, and it's really nice."

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