Venango Chorus director Beth Orris got a little philosophical when developing this year's holiday concert theme - “Goin’ Home.”
The idea came after her daughter Marianne’s home in Germany became the home of a family of Ukrainian refugees fleeing their war ravaged home. (Read their story here.)
As they met over the last few Mondays on the top of Moran Street at the Good Hope Lutheran Church in Oil City, the home of the chorus, Orris asked the members to write down “what does going home mean to you?”
The varied ideas of home will likely be folded into the program and read in-between songs. Many touched upon heaven and faith, fitting the venue for the show.
Others were more philosophical and to the point.
“Home meant more to me when my parents were alive,” one chorus member wrote. “Where all of my kids and grandkids are all together. Warm and cozy. Where I go to meet my savior.”
“Home must have a fireplace, a piano and lots and lots of books,” another wrote.
Local columnist Peter Greene wrote “… and what does ‘at home’ mean except in a place where you don’t have to worry about the secret rules.”
And “I have many houses, I have no home,” another member said matter-of-factly.
Orris said that she picked some songs to specifically portray the idea of “home.” Songs derived from Scripture like “Keep Your Lamps” and “He, Watching Over Israel” or patriotic songs like “This Is My Song” and “America The Beautiful.” Also a song of longing from Les Mis called "Bring Him Home.” Like many of the quotes from the members of the chorus, the title song "Goin’ Home" describes going to eternal salvation in heaven someday. And a holiday show must include some Christmas favorites that, as Orris put it, "remind us all of the joys of being 'Home For The Holidays' and all that entails."
“Goin’ Home” will open at 7 p.m. December 3 at Good Hope Lutheran Church in Oil City.
Learn more about the chorus from their Facebook page.
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