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Nov 17, 2014

Houston Chamber Choir Returns To The Villa For A Much Anticipated Holiday Tradition

Eagerly awaited each year by audience members and singers alike, Noël, Noël: Christmas at the Villa is a welcome break from the frantic pace of the holiday season. The serene beauty of the Italianate Chapel is a perfect setting in which to be uplifted by lilting carols, choral classics, and new works sure to become future favorites. The Houston Chamber Choir presents this seasonal tradition on Saturday, December 13 and Sunday, December 14 at 3:30 and 7:30 pm at the Chapel of the Villa de Matel, located at 6510 Lawndale Avenue.


Highlights of the program include Franz Biebl’s popular 1964 work Ave Maria, Giovanni Gabrieli’s Hodie Christus natus est, and traditional favorites and carols arranged by Alice Parker, Bob Chilcott, and John Rutter. Joining the Houston Chamber Choir for matinee performances will be The Treble Choir of Houston. The Treble Choir is directed by Marianna Parnas-Simpson, and comprised of children from many backgrounds from the greater Houston community.


The Chapel of the Villa de Matel was built in 1928 by architect Maurice J. Sullivan, and is modeled after the gorgeous basilicas of Northern Italy, in the Lombard Romanesque style. The chapel and convent were the proudest of Sullivan’s creations. Asked by the Sisters of Charity to create a building that would "be as good in 500 years as on the day of completion," Mr. Sullivan accomplished that and so much more, giving this beautiful space an interior that rivals those found in chapels located in France or Rome. The space allows voices to soar, making it a venue that produces a radiant musical experience for both the Houston Chamber Choir and holiday audiences. 


You can purchase tickets online at or by calling (713) 224-5566. General admission tickets to this concert are $40 for Adults and $36 for Seniors (65+).


Led by Artistic Director Robert Simpson, Houston Chamber Choir is a professional ensemble at the forefront of choral music in the United States. The ensemble has collaborated with leading artists of our day, including Dave Brubeck, Peter Schickele (a.k.a. P.D.Q. Bach), Bill McGlaughlin, Joseph Flummerfelt, Peter Phillips, Reinbert de Leeuw and Jamie Bernstein. A champion of contemporary music, the choir has commissioned new works from Christopher Theofanidis, David Ashley White, Dominick DiOrio, and Jocelyn Hagen. Houston Chamber Choir has toured internationally from Mexico to Wales and appeared nationally at conventions held by The American Choral Directors Association, Chorus America, and most recently at Trinity Wall Street in New York and Yale University. The choir’s recording of 19th and 20th century Russian secular choral music, Ravishingly Russian, was greeted with glowing reviews: “Ravishing is right” (Gramophone) and “The singing is top-of-the-line” (American Record Guide). In 2012, the ensemble released the world premiere recording of Psalmi ad Vesperas by late 17th century Italian composer Giovanni Paolo Colonna, and was hailed by Fanfare Magazine as “one recording that Baroque music lovers will need in their collection.”