OUTLOOK: Experience a night of music and theater at the WCHS Madrigal Singe Feaste

Published 4:00 am Sunday, November 5, 2023

For all who care to travel back in time, come and enjoy the sights and sounds of an age that rebirthed art and architecture, a period when great literature was written, scientists thrived and courts engaged musicians of great talent.

Come and experience the Renaissance era during the Warren Central High School Madrigal Choir Singe Feaste.

For more than 25 years, the Warren Central and Vicksburg High School Madrigal choirs have presented a Renaissance-style dinner theater with a four-course meal that includes a Wassail Toast. The two high schools alternate the years they perform and this year, Warren Central will host the event.

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The Singe Feaste is steeped in tradition, but audience members can expect a few changes this year since this will be both WCHS head choir director Harlan Mapp and WCHS assistant choir director Richard Culpepper’s first time leading the group.

“This will be our first round of Singe Feaste because I got hired last year,” Mapp said. “This is why it gives us the perfect opportunity to kind of change the way things were done in the past since we don’t know what the tradition was. We are creating a new tradition.”

Mapp admitted, however, that modifying the Singe Feaste has been a bit overwhelming and exciting at the same time.

“It has been quite daunting not having somebody who kind of knows how it works or how it has traditionally worked in the past. We have a layout of what to expect, but that doesn’t make it any less daunting,” he said. “But at the same time, I think the fear is the thing that is the most exciting and, and exhilarating because we are carrying on a tradition in our own way and carry on the legacy of the people that came before us and in our own way, improving upon what has happened in the past.

One of the changes being made, Mapp said, is the setting for the Singe Feaste.

In years past, venues were adorned with holiday decorations, but this year, under the direction of WCHS art teacher Claude Lee, art students have been working on a redesign of the décor.

“And they (the art students) will be instrumental in putting everything up the day before and getting everything ready to go,” Mapp said.

Changes have also been made to the music selections, which Mapp said has been exciting for choir members who have been part of the Singe Feaste in years past.

Of the 12 pieces of music that will be performed, said WCHS senior Bo Campbell, a second-year madrigal choir member, “I believe our most difficult song to perform this year is our unique arrangement of ‘Silent Night.’ While it is not a very difficult piece of music, singing it the way it will have the greatest impact on the audience is a very difficult feat.”

In addition to choral music provided by the WCHS Madrigal Choir, Mapp said the Academy of Innovation Pop A Cappella group Southern Synergy will also perform during the Singe Feaste.

The play accompanying the musical selections, Mapp said, is entitled “A Ring of Truth,” which is a story that revolves around a fortune teller who bestows a ring upon the court that forces the wearer to tell the truth.

Singe Feaste performances will be held on Nov. 16, 17 and 18 at the B.B. Club, 721 Clay St. Seating for each performance begins at 6:30 p.m. The catered meal by the B.B. Club will include a salad, chicken cordon bleu, a potato, a green bean variety, a roll and the Wassail Toast. Tickets are $30 and are available at https://www.showtix4u.com/event-details/77633 or from choir members. Seating is limited and tickets must be purchased by Nov. 10. For more information, visit sites.google.com/vwsd.org/wchschoirs.

About Terri Cowart Frazier

Terri Frazier was born in Cleveland. Shortly afterward, the family moved to Vicksburg. She is a part-time reporter at The Vicksburg Post and is the editor of the Vicksburg Living Magazine, which has been awarded First Place by the Mississippi Press Association. She has also been the recipient of a First Place award in the MPA’s Better Newspaper Contest’s editorial division for the “Best Feature Story.”

Terri graduated from Warren Central High School and Mississippi State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in communications with an emphasis in public relations.

Prior to coming to work at The Post a little more than 10 years ago, she did some freelancing at the Jackson Free Press. But for most of her life, she enjoyed being a full-time stay at home mom.

Terri is a member of the Crawford Street United Methodist Church. She is a lifetime member of the Vicksburg Junior Auxiliary and is a past member of the Sampler Antique Club and Town and Country Garden Club. She is married to Dr. Walter Frazier.

“From staying informed with local governmental issues to hearing the stories of its people, a hometown newspaper is vital to a community. I have felt privileged to be part of a dedicated team at The Post throughout my tenure and hope that with theirs and with local support, I will be able to continue to grow and hone in on my skills as I help share the stories in Vicksburg. When asked what I like most about my job, my answer is always ‘the people.’

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