At the annual Festival of Christmas, SBS students shared their artistic, musical and theatrical talents, celebrating the coming of Jesus Christ.
“Each year the Festival of Christmas propels me into the Christmas spirit as our arts students honor Christ our King,” said Head of School Dr. Don Davis. “The real magic of Christmas is that Christ remains at the center of our celebrations. At Second Baptist School, we keep Christ not only at the center of Christmas but at the center of all we do. That’s the SBS difference.”
“The theme of the festival was worshipping an amazing event that happened over two thousand years ago, the birth of Jesus Christ,” shared choir member Sophie Rincon ‘23. Visual art, theatre, choral and instrumental music departments from lower, middle and upper school joined together to put on this spectacular show for the glory of God.
Director of Instrumental Music Kendel Hickenbottom shares, “It was a wonderful night showing the talents of all the arts programs. This is one of the biggest shows we put on because we are dedicated to the mission of promoting Christ in everything we do.”
Beginning with a jubilant rendition of Carol of the Bells by the upper school choirs, followed by the fourth grade handbells performance of Up on the Housetop, the audience was awed by the enchanting sounds of Christmas. SBS choirs and instrumental musicians from sixth through twelfth grade graced the stage with songs of holiday cheer. Middle school theatre prompted laughter with a spirited performance of How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and the upper school theatre students reminded us of Christ’s sacrifice through Legend of the Candycane. Another highlight was the Reflection Men’s Choir, dancing and singing with cowboy hats donned, No White Christmases in Houston.
Visual art students’ work was on display throughout the show, with artwork specifically themed to each piece of music. Upper school art teacher GeAnna Manners said, “Middle and upper school art students selected one of the songs performed to illustrate in their own way, using the medium of their choice.” Senior Alexis Ayala’s favorite part of the project “was interpreting the meaning of the music dedicated to Christmas and the celebration of Jesus’ birth through my own personal visual artwork and imagination.” As an example, Julia Sauvageau ‘22 said, “the bell artwork symbolized the birth of Jesus when everyone wanted to celebrate and alert people that he was finally born.”
Over and over again, arts students shared about the joy of spreading the love of Christ through their performances and talents. “It is amazing how we can use the gifts God has given us to bring happiness to others and glory to God. The ability to perform this show in person this year shows how God works in amazing ways through hardships, and He always prevails,” said sophomore Lily Tondera.
The experience, both for the performers and the audience, united our community. “Everyone's hard work came together, and I know the audience loved the blend of all of the different aspects of the show, from instrumental music to choral music to theatrical arrangements. It was a uniting experience,” shared Caroline Lane ‘24.
Sophomore Ellie Veeningen believes “the SBS difference is that a majority of the student body is involved in the arts. SBS highly prizes exposing its students to the performing and visual arts and I think that really stands out among other schools.”
With candles lit, the arts students ended the show by surrounding the audience with their beautiful rendition of Peace, Peace - Silent Night, honoring the King of Kings born on Christmas.