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CONTACT: PETER ALEXANDER
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0072; fax (319) 384-0024
e-mail: peter-alexander@uiowa.edu

Release: Nov. 10, 2000

University of Iowa Old Gold Singers present 'Cocoa and Carols' Dec. 2 & 3

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Familiar holiday songs, Santa Claus and hot chocolate will all be part of the performance when the University of Iowa Old Gold Singers present their annual holiday spectacle, "Cocoa and Carols," at 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 2 and at 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 3 in Hancher Auditorium on the UI campus.

An ensemble of the UI School of Music, the Old Gold Singers will be led by UI graduate assistant Kevin Kriegel. The group consists of 24 singers, plus a seven-member stage band. They will be joined for "Cocoa and Carols" by three community groups: The Iowa City Girls Chorus, directed by Ann Berry and Vicki Arnold; the Iowa City Chorus of Sweet Adelines, directed by Beverly Hamilton; and the Old Capitol Barbershop Chorus directed by Larry Knipfer.

"Cocoa and Carols" is traditionally one of the most popular holiday events for area audiences. The program features holiday favorites, including well-known Christmas carols, and a perennial favorite, a "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" sing-along. As is traditional for "Cocoa and Carols," Santa Claus will be a guest star and hot cocoa will be served to guests in the lobby after the performances.

The Old Gold Singers will present their program in four sets, or groups of pieces:

-- "Winter Wonderland," which will feature secular favorites of Christmas, including "Let it Snow," Winter Wonderland" "Jingle Bells" and "It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas":

-- "Son of God," which will feature religious songs of Christmas, including "O Come, All Ye Faithful," "Joy to the World," "The Light Come Down" and "Go Tell It on the Mountain";

-- "Everyone’s a Child at Christmas," including "The Mean Character of Christmas medley," "Old Toy Trains" and "Here Comes Santa Claus"; and

-- the finale, with the traditional sing-along of "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" and other holiday favorites.

The Old Gold Singers are a select musical group whose members are chosen by audition. In addition to "Cocoa and Carols," their campus performances include the annual "Fall Festival" and "Swing Into Spring" concerts. The group also travels throughout Iowa, performing for schools and community groups. Past tours outside the state have taken them to New York, Washington, D.C., and the Bahamas.

A native of Brooklyn, Iowa, Kriegel has a degree in music education from Central College in Pella and a master's degree in choral conducting from the UI. He has taught public school music in Iowa for four years. Having been a singer/dancer for the 1989 Iowa State Fair Singers, Kriegel has directed and choreographed show choirs and directed school and community musical productions, including "Guys and Dolls," "Li’l Abner," "The Music Man," "Fiddler on the Roof" and "Oklahoma." He is a doctoral student in choral conducting at the UI School of Music.

"Cocoa and Carols" tickets are $11 general admission ($7 for UI students, seniors and youth), and are available from the Hancher Auditorium box office. Hancher box office hours are 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. weekdays, and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. From the local calling area or outside Iowa, dial (319) 335-1160. Long distance within Iowa and western Illinois is toll-free, 1-800-HANCHER. Fax to (319) 353-2284. Orders may be charged to VISA, MasterCard or American Express. UI students may charge their purchases to their university bills, and UI faculty and staff may select the option of payroll deduction.

People with special needs for access, seating and auxiliary services should dial (319) 335-1158. This number will be answered by box office personnel prepared to offer assistance with handicapped parking, wheelchair access and seating, hearing augmentation and other services. The line is equipped with TDD for people with hearing impairment who use that technology.

For information on UI arts events, visit http://www.uiowa.edu/~uiowacr on the World Wide Web. You may visit the UI School of Music web site at http://www.uiowa.edu/~music/. To receive UI arts news by e-mail, contact <deborah-thumma@uiowa.edu>.