Watsonairs Carol Festival returns for 32nd edition on Thursday

Daily Herald File Photo The Watsonairs perform during the 2022 Watsonairs Carol Festival.

The Watsonairs Christmas Carol Festival is returning this Thursday with a new leader.

This will be the vocal group’s first Christmas Carol Festival under new choir director Amy Robinson, who accompanied the group on piano in 2019. She’s excited to take part in her first festival as director

“This is a great way to bring in the Christmas season and it’s for a great cause,” she said. “We’re just really looking forward to performing for the community.”

The annual festival has run for more than 30 years after replacing the former Rotary Carol Festival, Robinson said.

“We began hosting the annual Carol Festival 32 years ago and prior to that, it was a Rotary Club of Prince Albert event,” she said. “When they stopped, we stepped in.”

The Watsonairs Ladies Choral Group were forced to cancel in-person performances in 2020 and 2021 and it returned last year.

On Thursday, the choir and their guest artists will perform a series of Christmas favourites at Sacred Heart. All proceeds will go towards the Salvation Army Christmas Cheer Fund, an organization The Watsonairs have supported since their first carol festival.

Much like last year, the Watsonairs will welcome the Veselka Choir as guest performers.

“We’re going to be singing. There’s going to be a couple of different groups singing,” she said.

“Twyla Gange is doing a full quintet, there’s going to be all kinds of artists in the mix, and then we’re going to do … carolling in the intermission. While we do that, we’re going to pass the basket around for the collection. (It’s) lots of Christmas songs and just welcoming warming wishes for the for the holiday season.”

The 32nd annual Watsonairs Ladies Choral Group Christmas Carol Festival begins at 7 p.m. inside Sacred Heart Cathedral on Dec. 7. Admission is by free-will offering and etransfer donations will be accepted until Dec. 7.