Arts & Entertainment

Marcia Wymer Stages Christmas Concert at St. Elizabeth Motherhouse

53daadf4886799a246f7_cc05acf0780c16f5d7e1_DSC_0735.jpg
The audience awaits the performance in the chapel. Credits: David Bryant
a6e683e34538c684b276_7c1b886f569a21592db6_DSC_0714.jpg
Cassandra Tkaczow and Noelle Acaso perform "The Prayer." Credits: David Bryant
e5b72e9f3ec16b8edef2_c3efcdcb78cac9752ab3_DSC_0724.jpg
Marcia Wymer, Kyle Leslie and Tanak Losey sing "Dona Nobis Pacem." Credits: David Bryant
617fd117a1e53b04e710_aa43828e8e5d458b28ca_DSC_0733.jpg
Michelle Onofrio, Justin Bui and Betsy Vivar perform "All Through the Night." Credits: David Bryant
b4341cac2ee92e26bf9f_716aecc070ad0ebdac1b_DSC_0754.jpg
The chorus performs the last song of the afternoon. Credits: David Bryant
53daadf4886799a246f7_cc05acf0780c16f5d7e1_DSC_0735.jpg

ALLEGANY, NY – Christmas music flowed through the chapel in the St. Elizabeth Motherhouse Sunday afternoon.

Marcia Wymer, music director at the motherhouse, originally planned the Christmas concert for St. Bonaventure University, where she is employed as coordinator of liturgy. Since classes were ending and exams were coming up, not enough students were able to participate. So Wymer came up with Plan B.

“I didn’t want to cancel everything, so I sent an email to a couple of my peeps a month ago asking if anyone wanted to do a concert,” Wymer recalled.

Sign Up for E-News

She told them they would be allowed to perform any piece they wanted to, as long as they came prepared. And she gave them a week to reply.

Wymer needed participants to be prepared because she did not schedule rehearsals before Sunday. “I told everyone that we’d be meeting at 12:30 p.m. the day of the concert,” she said. “I chose people who I knew were trusted to show up prepared. I know great people who are great musicians.”

The concert, which attracted over 130 people, began at 2 p.m. The performers included some St. Bonaventure students and some of Wymer’s theater friends. Musical selections ranged from pop to traditional. Featured songs included “In the Bleak Mid-Winter,” “Mary Did You Know,” “Hallelujah,” “The Prayer,” and “Feliz Navidad.” The chorus closed the concert singing “We Wish You a Merry Christmas” – a number not listed on the program.

Elderly people made up approximately a third of the audience. A few toddlers swayed along to the 20 instrumental and vocal performances. Attendees had a chance to interact during a brief intermission, when they were asked to stand up, greet each other and ask those around them whether they are on the naughty or nice list this year.

Sister Carol Kenyon, who lives in the motherhouse, said she thinks she is on the nice list this year and added this was the first year she experienced the Christmas show at the motherhouse.

“I think it’s wonderful,” Kenyon said. “They’re really good.”

Monica Mattioli, an Olean resident and executive director of alumni operations at St. Bonaventure University, attended the concert and enjoyed it. “It was a lovely expression of the spirit of Christmas,” she said.

Mattioli added she likes to attend events at the motherhouse. “I find it to be a welcoming place with beautiful hospitality year round,” she said.

Sister Mary Lafferty, also a resident of the motherhouse, recalled that last year instead of a concert, Wymer organized a holiday season play.

Wymer concurred, describing the event as a “theater production with songs from different Broadway productions.”

She spoke of the joys of working at both the university and the motherhouse. “Very few people can say they go to work and they love their job,” Wymer added. “I’m very fortunate, and I’m so blessed to work here because the sisters are amazing”

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Greater Olean

Becoming English in 90 Minutes

It was our first day in the country. The smell of fish'n chips filled the air, and the Wig and Pen was the place to be as England prepared to take on Sweden in the quarterfinals of the 2018 World Cup on Saturday.  Wearing blue and yellow was a death sentence. The streets were lined with fans dressed in red who stood in pub lines extending for blocks. We had one goal: Convince the locals ...

Understanding the Tough Times at The Buffalo News Can Lead to Brighter Future for the Newspaper 

Given the fiscal state of the news industry, the changes underway at The Buffalo News are not unique. To offset revenue losses, newspapers across the nation have bid farewell to longtime reporters, eliminated once-popular sections and removed jobs that involved covering important beats, such as education, the environment and transportation. 

What makes the ...

Grandpa Practiced Sustainability

My grandpa was of the Depression Era. Sustainability wasn’t “a thing” back then — it was just the way you lived. Though he was raised in a time when you were thankful to be able to put a good meal on the table, he likely had a standard of life that we would consider average or middle class today. He didn’t grow up in a slum or shanty town, but he did understand the ...

Upcoming Events

Carousel_image_afd68efb1a8dec240892_2018_final_taste_art_in_the_park_poster

Sun, July 22, 11:00 AM

War Veterans Park, Olean

Taste of Olean / Art in the Park

Arts & Entertainment Food & Drink

Mon, July 23, 12:00 PM

Allegany Public Library, Allegany

SBU's Quick Center ArtMobile

Education

Mon, July 23, 2:00 PM

Olean Public Library, Olean

Ladies Social Hour

Arts & Entertainment

State Grant Wil Help Ellicottville Brewing Company Expand in Cattaraugus County

July 18, 2018

ALBANY, NY – Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo on Tuesday announced the grand opening of Ellicottville Brewing Company's fourth location in Cattaraugus County.

The company's new 75,000-square-foot facility in Little Valley allows for the expansion of commercial production and bottling operations and the addition of 40 new full-time jobs. Ellicottville Brewing Company, which distributes its ...

Quick Center’s ArtMobile Embarks on 10th Year of Summer Visits to Area Libraries 

ST. BONAVENTURE, NY — The Regina A. Quick Center for the Arts at St. Bonaventure University kicks off its 10-year anniversary this month participating in the National Summer Reading Program, making stops at public libraries across New York and Pennsylvania.

“This is one of the Quick Center’s most ambitious summers to date,” said Sean Conklin, assistant curator of the ...

Four area students receive Murphy scholarship

Four area high school graduates each recently received a $10,000 John J. Murphy Family Scholarship managed by the Cattaraugus Region Community Foundation.

Tyler Lashway of Port Allegany High School; Emily Rohrs and Anna Seamon, both of Allegany-Limestone Central School; and Olean High School’s Natalie Sova each received the John J. Murphy Family Scholarship.

The $10,000 scholarship is ...

'A Day in the Life': One Transportation Supervisor Serves Portville and Olean

PORTVILLE, NY – A whiteboard with dozens of destinations and vehicle numbers written in various colors sits inside the Portville bus garage, ready to be changed at any moment. David Youngs, the transportation supervisor of the Portville and Olean School Districts, knows that before 2 almost every afternoon, he is likely to receive an email changing the entire meticulously planned ...

'A Day in the Life' Follows Della Moore of the African American Center for Cultural Development

OLEAN, NY – When Della Moore walks down the street, she greets everyone she passes and makes sure to ask, “How are you doing?” 

From the moment I joined her at the 7-Eleven on a cloudy, cold December morning until we finished making our stops along State and North Union streets, she remained ...

'Day in the Life' Follows Warehouse Selector Justus Elliot

OLEAN, NY -- For Justus Elliot, time and pace are essential. As a warehouse selector for Olean Wholesale Grocery Co-Op, most of the 21-year-old’s job calls for efficiency.

“Everything is time-based," Elliot explained. "One hundred percent is the norm, and it’s what we work for every day. If our score is less, then we are moving too slow, and we kick it into ...

Happy Veterans Day, Mom

What began as an attempt to boost her GPA soon turned into a 22-year career for my mom, Ramona Lee Discavage.

On the first day of her freshman year at St. Bonaventure University in 1989, members of the Army ROTC Seneca Battalion helped incoming freshmen move their stuff into their dorm rooms.  Afterward, they invited all of the freshmen to a lunch.

“When they described the ...

Lynn Kemp: ‘Best Soldier I Could Be’

Lynn Kemp is nearing 95 and knows he has lived a good life.

“The good Lord has been awful good to me,” recalled the lifelong resident of Shinglehouse, Pennsylvania. “I never refused an order. I tried to be the best soldier I could be. I don’t know what your relationship is with God, but mine is pretty close.”

Born Oct. 29, 1920, Lynn grew up in a home on Turkey ...

WW II museum provides role models for young people

When Steve Appleby asks area students if they know Snoop Dog, Eminem, Kanye West, the Kardashians, Parris Hilton or Miley Cyrus, they answer yes. Then Appleby will ask which of them knows Jason Dunham is, and the students will not have a clue.

Appleby will explain that Jason Dunham was a Marine from Scio, in Allegany County, New York, who was killed in Iraq in 2006 after jumping on a grenade ...