Mission Valley Choral Society welcomes spring

Apr. 25—Sunlight poured into the St. Ignatius Mission Catholic Church, painting bright colors through the stained glass windows as the Mission Valley Choral Society began their first weekend concert on Saturday.

The 22-person choir, under the able direction of Cathy Gillhouse, sang different types of music beginning with "Hallelujah" from "Mount of Olives" by Ludwig von Beethoven.

Other selections were spirituals such as "Ride the Chariot" arranged by William Henry Smith, and the heart-rending "Inscription of Hope" by Z Randall Stroope, inspired by an inscription found on the walls of a cellar in Cologne, Germany, during the Holocaust.

Audience participation was invited during "76 Trombones" from "The Music Man" by Meredith Wilson and "God Bless America" during Irving Berlin's America medley.

An American traditional song, "Down by the Riverside," concluded the performance, and the audience had a whole stanza to sing along.

Choir member Kim Sheesley said the fine acoustics in the beautiful old church "make you feel like a star — like singing in the shower only 10 times better."

About 40 audience members attended the concert.

The Choral Society sang again Sunday at the Immaculate Conception Catholic Church in Polson. That concert was followed by a meal of ham and scalloped potatoes, served in the church basement.