The moods of the Christmas season will certainly be found in Tappahannock and surrounding counties on December 12, 2010. Two musical concerts called “The Musical Moods Of Christmas” will be presented in the sanctuary of Tappahannock Memorial United Methodist Church. The Musical Moods of Christmas Choir will be accompanied by a 30 member orchestra under the direction of Davidson Burgess. Three guest soloists will be featured: Judy Haile, soprano; David McEntire, tenor; and Jay Meachum, trumpet.
Judy Haile is a member of the Tappahannock Memorial United Methodist Church choir. She has performed with the Essex County Community Chorus. She also performs throughout the area singing classical, pop and gospel music. Judy Haile is a graduate of Shenandoah University.
David McEntire, a tenor soloist, will be featured singing “O Holy Night.” Mr. McEntire is the minister of Gibeon Baptist Church in Village, Virginia. He is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University and Union Theological Seminary of Richmond, Virginia. Rev. McEntire is also the musical director of the Essex County Community Chorus.
Jay Meachum, trumpet soloist, is from King, North Carolina. Mr. Meachum was a guest artist two years ago for “The Musical Moods of Christmas.” By popular demand, he is returning to once again perform for the people of Essex County. Mr. Meachum has performed with Quincy Jones, Wynnona Judd, Maya Angelou, Oprah Winfrey, Aretha Franklin, The Manhattan Transfer, The Nelson Riddle Orchestra, and many other outstanding ensembles and personalities. He recently toured Cuba with the “Musicianaries International” ensemble. Jay Meachum is a graduate of Appalachian State University and hold a master’s degree from the University of Tennessee. He teaches in the music department of Catawba College in North Carolina. Mr. Meachum is an outstanding arranger and performer on the trumpet and he will be featured on three of his own Christmas arrangements.
Conductor, Davidson Burgess, has had a long and successful career in music. He attended the United States Navy School of Music and played with the U.S. Navy Band in San Francisco, California. As an oboist, Mr. Burgess played with the following symphony orchestras: Bluefield, WV; Charleston, WV; Roanoke, VA; Winston-Salem, NC; Berkeley, CA; and the Western Piedmont Symphony of North Carolina. He was twice featured soloist with the Roanoke Symphony. Davidson Burgess taught in the public schools of West Virginia, Virginia, and North Carolina. He also taught at Ferrum College, Virginia Commonwealth University, and Wake Forest University. At Wake Forest, he was Director of Bands and conducted the University Symphony Orchestra.
Davidson was founder and director of the Davidson County (NC) Community Orchestra and Chorus, the Ashland-Hanover Oratorio Chorus and Orchestra, and the Hanover Concert Band. He served as conductor of the Hanover County School’s Youth Symphony Orchestra and the Williamsburg Youth Orchestra. Davidson Burgess retired from the Hanover County Schools in 1998 after serving for 13 years as Director of Fine Arts, supervising over 60 art and music teachers. Over the past 55 years, Davidson Burgess has served as choir director for 8 churches. Since his retirement, he has served Tappahannock Memorial United Methodist Church as director of music. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Concord University and a master’s degree from Marshall University and has done additional graduate study at VCU and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, NC.
Nine years ago, it was a vision of Davidson Burgess to combine the choir of T.M.U.M.C. with a symphony orchestra and present a Christmas program for the Tappahannock/Essex community. A committee of supporters was formed and given the charge of planning and raising funds for the project. Within a year the committee was well on the way of making the concerts a reality. For the first two years the concerts consisted of Robert Shaw’s “The Many Moods of Christmas.” In 2005, the music was changed to a variety of seasonal music and the name of the concerts became “The Musical Moods Of Christmas.” December 12, 2010 marks the eighth year and the 12th and 13th concerts of this Christmas spectacular event. The Musical Moods Of Christmas will be performed in the sanctuary of Tappahannock Memorial United Methodist Church at 3:30 pm and 7:00 pm. The concerts are free and the public is cordially invited to attend.