Arts & Culture

UK Choirs to celebrate 25 years of singing in the holiday season at 'Collage'

photo of Jefferson Johnson conducting UK Women's Choir, UK Men's Chorus and Lexington Singers Children's Choir at "Collage"
This will be UK Choirs 25th anniversary production of the beloved holiday concert "Collage."

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 16, 2022) — The University of Kentucky Choirs celebrates the 25th anniversary of everyone’s favorite holiday concert, “Collage: A Holiday Spectacular,” Dec. 3-4, at the Singletary Center for the Arts Concert Hall.   

"Collage" is a time-honored holiday tradition for Central Kentucky audiences. "Since the first 'Collage' concert in 1998, nearly 5,000 students have participated,” says director of UK Choral Activities, Jefferson Johnson, D.M.A.. “Over the past 25 years 'Collage' has become a holiday tradition for thousands of families throughout the Bluegrass. Many people tell us that 'Collage' kicks off their holiday season each year." This fast-paced and visually exciting concert features more than 500 celebrated vocalists and musicians from the UK School of Music and the Lexington Singers Children’s Choir.  

"Collage" is presented by the UK Choirs under the direction of Johnson and Lori Hetzel, associate director of UK Choral Activities. The concerts showcase the department's highly praised student groups: UK Chorale; UK Choristers, conducted by Elizabeth Wilson; UK Women's Choir; and UK Men's Chorus, as well as the UK Choirs' a cappella groups, the acoUstiKats, Paws and Listen and Blue Note.  

Along with the UK Choirs, this season’s concerts will feature performances by Professor Dieter Hennings Yeomans on guitar; the UK Trombone Quartet led by Associate Professor Bradley Kerns; UK Tuba-Euphonium Quartet directed by Assistant Professor Matthew Hightower; SaxCats led by Director of UK Jazz Studies Miles Osland;UK Blue Steel, a steel drum band led by lecturer Josh Smith; UK Holiday Clarinets led by Associate Professor Scott Wright; and crowd favorite, the Grasscats, a bluegrass band led by Johnson.  

In addition to showcasing the UK Choirs and musicians at the UK School of Music, each year "Collage" features the rich talents of the Lexington arts community. UK will welcome back to the stage the Lexington Singers Children's Choir, conducted by Hetzel and UK Choirs alumnus Daniel Wesley, for several songs. The programs will also include appearances by Paul Laurence Dunbar High School Chamber Choir, conducted by Tiffany Marsh; Lexington Christian Academy Chamber Choir, led by Wesley; and the Woodford County High School Choir under the direction of UK alumnus Taylor Strickland.   

“Collage” will help the Bluegrass rejoice in the holiday spirit beginning 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 3, and 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4, at the Singletary Center Concert Hall. Tickets for "Collage" are $34 for adults and $17 for students, plus processing fees. Tickets are available through the Singletary Center ticket office by phone at 869-257-4929, online at www.scfatickets.com, or in person at the box office.   

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.