cantata

MICHAEL ROKNICK | Herald

Choir members and musicians rehearse for Covenent Presbyterian Church’s Christmas Cantata held Sunday at the church located at 263 E. State St. in Sharon.

SHARON – Penny Kraynak is helping her church tell an important story.

“It’s the story of Christmas,’’ said Kraynak, director of Covenant Presbyterian Church’s Christmas Cantata. “This is centered on worshipping.’’

The cantata has been a tradition for the church since 1978. Kraynak has been director almost all of that time.

The cantata, which is open to the public, will be held 7 p.m. Sunday at the church located at 263 E. State St., Sharon. There is no admission cost, and the church will take an offering. Nursery care is provided and a cookie reception will follow the service.

 The service incorporates music to present the biblical story of Jesus’ birth.

The production requires extensive planning. The cantata uses choir members from Covenant Presbyterian and other churches, along with musicians from the church and throughout the community.

There will be 20 musicians in the orchestra and 55 singers in the choir.

“We’ve been practicing once a week for the past nine weeks,’’ Kraynak said.

The musical performance will be incorporated into a multimedia religious service. Attendees will hear the music, and see videos and photographs, celebrating the birth of Jesus, will be shown on two large screen on opposite sides of the altar.

“The first five songs, both musically and through video, transport us back to that first Christmas night and the dawn of God’s grace to mankind through our Lord’s birth,’’ Kraynak said. “The songs flow from one to another with beautiful choral arrangements and orchestral accompaniments.’’

As the service progresses, the last five pieces are praises to God, she said.

Elva Newcomer, a viola player from Erie, is among the musicians. She said everyone can enjoy the cantata.

“It’s really lovely Christmas music,’’ Newcomer said. “Everyone should come.’’

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