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St. John’s United Church of Christ

St. John’s United Church of Christ, 733 Central Ave., Dunkirk, will present “Christmas Vespers – the Music of Christmas” on Friday, Dec. 20 at 6:30 p.m., featuring pianist Ann Rose and violist David Rose.

Ann Rose was born in South Korea, and started playing the piano at age 5. She began improvising and composing at a very early age – two skills which she pursued through her early training, achieving a degree in Composition and Piano from Wilfrid Laurier University in Ontario, Canada. Her teachers have included Sydney Young, Jamie Parker, Glenn Buhr, and Heather Taves. Ann has appeared with the Canadian Chamber ensemble, and has been seen and heard on CBC television. The winner of numerous competitions and awards, her music has been performed and recorded by several artists in Canada, most recently by her former teacher and also by her husband, violist David Rose. Ann received her Master of Piano Performance degree from the State University of New York at Fredonia, studying under Father Sean Duggan, as well as a degree in Music Education. She is the organist at St. John’s UCC in Dunkirk, and teaches choir and general music at Sinclairville Elementary School. In April, she will be touring the Czech Republic with fellow pianist Jiru Pazour.

David Rose was born in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. His principal teachers have been Ernest Kassian, Gerald Stanick at the University of British Columbia, and Atar Arad at Indiana University. He was awarded the position of associate principal viola of the Vancouver Symphony. He served for eight seasons as principal violist of the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony and violist with the Canadian Chamber Ensemble, as well as teaching at the University of Waterloo. David served as the acting assistant principal violist of the San Francisco Symphony, enjoying involvement in a European tour and the Grammy winning Mahler symphony recording cycle. David plays regularly at the 1891 Fredonia Opera House’s annual Bach and Beyond festival, and has recently completed a recording of the six cello suites of J.S. Bach. He is currently associate professor of viola at SUNY Fredonia.

Also taking part will be Ann and David’s sons, Billy and Manny, with their own musical contributions to the program. Billy is in 10th grade. He was in the 2012 Hillman Opera “Gianni Schicchi” at SUNY Fredonia, serves as pianist for the Fredonia Central School Jazz Band, plays clarinet, and enjoys reading and video games. Manny is in 7th grade and enjoys art, board games, video games, and weight lifting. Both boys study piano with longtime SUNY Fredonia faculty member Phyllis East.

All are welcome to attend this special celebration of Christmas. Admission is free. Parking and handicapped access is on the Eagle Street entrance of the church. The church phone number is 366-0710.

On Saturday, Dec. 21, St. John’s United Church of Christ will hold a turkey dinner with serving from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Call 366-0710 for reservations. Pre-sale tickets are $9.50, or tickets at the door, $10. Take-outs are available. Parking is off Eagle Street. Pre-sales are highly recommended. Call 366-0710 to purchase them. Food items will benefit Rural Ministry. The Dunkirk Middle School Chorus will sing songs of the season.

Blessed Mary Angela Holy Name Society

Looking for a quick meal after a long day of Christmas shopping or cookie baking? On Wednesday, Dec. 18, the Blessed Mary Angela Holy Name Society will be serving a December barbecue featuring Weidner’s chicken and spare ribs. This dinner will include the ribs and chicken as well as roasted rosemary baby red potatoes, baked beans, cole slaw, bread and hot apple streusel. The donation for this dinner is $15. Meals will be available at the Social Center, 324 Townsend St., Dunkirk from 4:30 to 6 p.m. with eat in or drive through service available.

Don’t forget The Polish Koledy Night this evening featuring the music of Lenny Gomulka and Chicago Push. Highlights include a homestyle Polish dinner, a sing-a-long of favorite Christmas carols in Polish and English, dancing to polka favorites. Donations are $30 per person. The event benefits the St. Gianna Pregnancy Outreach Center Chautauqua Satellite, 32 Moore Ave. Pre-sale tickets must be presented at the door.

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