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Students, seniors band together for Christmas carol concert

Residents at a Waterloo long term care home have joined voices with a group of over 40 elementary students for a lively Christmas concert, which is set for Wednesday at The Village at University Gates.

'Music makes everything special, no matter what it is,' says long term care resident John Hynd

Residents of The Village at University Gates long term care home have been preparing for a Christmas concert with students from a local elementary school. (Melanie Ferrier/CBC)

Residents at a Waterloo long term care home have joined voices with a group of over 40 elementary students for a lively Christmas concert, which is set for Wednesday at The Village at University Gates.

"People are just going to eat it up," said Tracy Weber, a music teacher at Laurelwood Public School and the driving force behind the concert.

 

"You know, we don't have to be the philharmonic choir here... They're going to love it and appreciate every note that comes out whether it sounds great or not."

That said, the students and residents have been hard at work, practicing a wide repertoire of carols and classic holiday songs.

Grade 8 student Taite Kraeker said singing with such a large choir is powerful. 

"It's really amazing to hear all the voices together," she said. "It's really beautiful."

Her classmate Ariya Johnson said her family's not religious and most of the songs were new to her, but she can see they have meaning to the older singers.

"It's really nice to see them bringing back memories," she said. "Because these songs have been with them for so long they connect with it really easily."

The students have been coming to the long term care home once a week since mid November to practice. 

When they come, residents said they throw the home's chapel space into temporary chaos, but no one is complaining. 

"They keep us young," said John Hynd, who lives at University Gates and is singing in the choir. 

"Music makes everything special, no matter what it is — holidays, birthdays — I think it's a language that everyone has."

Residents at a Waterloo long term care home have joined voices with a group of over 40 elementary students from Laurelwood Public School for a lively Christmas concert, which is set for Wednesday at The Village at University Gates. 5:26

About the Author

Melanie Ferrier

Melanie Ferrier is a radio and digital reporter with CBC News in Kitchener, Ont. You can email her at melanie.ferrier@cbc.ca.