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    Annual Empty Stocking Fund Concert Set for Dec. 12 Impact Banner

    Annual Empty Stocking Fund Concert Set for Dec. 12

    The Empty Stocking Fund Benefit Concert, presented by Performance Music at The University of Scranton, will take place Sunday, Dec. 12, 7:30 p.m. in the Houlihan-McLean Center. Admission is a donation of either a new and unwrapped child’s toy or book, new article of a child’s clothing, new toiletry items or a cash donation.
    December 7, 2021

    Performance Music at The University of Scranton will be encouraging folks to join them in the holiday spirit of giving at its annual Empty Stocking Fund Benefit Concert. Beginning at 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 12, in the Houlihan-McLean Center (Mulberry Street and Jefferson Avenue) the concert will feature student musicians from Performance Music at The University of Scranton.

    The concert is open to invited guests and all members of the University community. Attendees are asked to bring either a new and unwrapped child’s toy or book, new article of child’s clothing, new toiletry items (toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, comb/brush, etc.), or a cash donation to gain admission. The donated items will benefit local children and families in need this holiday season.

    All audience members must wear masks throughout the performance. University campus access and other health and safety information will be updated throughout the semester and can be seen on the Royals Back Together webpage. Please check Performance Music’s website, scranton.edu/music, within 24 hours of the recital for the most current information on audience COVID-19 mitigation measures (e.g., masking, vaccination, distancing, etc.).

    As always, this informal concert will include a variety of Christmas carols, performed by soloists and small ensembles including the University’s Percussion Ensemble, Steel Drum Band, String Ensemble, Holiday Choir, Trumpet Sextet, Clarinet Quintet, Flute Quartet and Saxophone Trio.

    There will be no audience sing-along portion of the program this year due to the pandemic.

    The origins of the Empty Stocking Fund Concert date back to 1999, when Performance Music Conductor and Director Cheryl Y. Boga’s friend, Alan Drake, the former band director at Georgia’s Augusta College (now Augusta University), told her about a benefit Christmas concert held there. When Boga asked Drake if he would mind if she brought the idea back to Scranton, he responded, “Absolutely not.”

    For that inaugural year, she and Drake decided to wage a friendly competition to see which concert could raise the most money, and a new tradition was born.

    No doubt, the concert’s charitable mission lends it a special resonance, and Boga noted it’s always moving to see the donated items put on display the night of the concert.

    And then there’s the warm yuletide vibes produced at the concert. By the time it ends, Boga said, “You can really see people starting to feel the Christmas spirit.”

    For more information on the Empty Stocking Fund Benefit Concert, call 570-941-7624, email music@scranton.edu or visit scranton.edu/music.

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