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The KPAC Blog features classical music news, reviews, and analysis from South Texas and around the world.

Midday Noels Treat Seasonal Blues

A downtown church has an interesting way of marking the holiday season, and helping downtowners relax. First Presbyterian does so  in a series of events precisely-titled Midday Noels.

"They are short concerts, during the middle of the day. We do them on Thursdays, this year Dec. 1, 8 and 15. They're designed to be about 30-minute programs.  The programs are very light-hearted in nature, a very informal proceeding. We want people to relax and enjoy the music," says Music Minister Tom Dooling.

If you're thinking those 12:10 concerts are right at lunch time, you're right. And they've got a plan for people who come.

"We offer a brown bag lunch that they can purchase as they leave the concert for $3--it's a great deal. Or if they have more time to stay with us we offer a full hot meal option for $8. A wonderful meal."

The style of music they're playing runs Christmas-y to secular.     

"The first week features our own Dr. Jae Ha, organist will present a number of seasonal organ pieces combined with some vocal pieces," Dooling says. "It's always one of the highlights because he's such a phenomenal talent. The second week, for the first time we're having a barbershop chorus. It's the Marksman Chorus from here in town...in order to sort of ring in the season with seasonal favorites and other barbershop favorites, (music up)  and then finally, the Freedom Brass, from the U.S. Air Force Band of the West.  They were a big hit last year and so we invited them back to play again this year."    

Dooling says it's a nice antidote for the hectic holidays.

"We have a lot of folks that work in the downtown area particularly that will use this as an opportunity to take their entire office out for a little Christmas celebration for the office because of the lunch option.  It's really meant to share."

The Midday Noels downtown tradition continues.  

Find more on Midday Noels here.

Jack Morgan can be reached at jack@tpr.org and on Twitter at @JackMorganii