The concert took listeners through the Christmas story via music.
At a gesture from conductor Rick Holdsworth, the Ring Sarasota bell players rose and turned to their bells to make the Longboat Island Chapel ring with Christmas cheer. Before the first chiming of the bells at the Dec. 8 Bells and Brass event, narrator Kyle Miller Wallace encouraged the audience to take a deep breath from the holiday season.
“We hope to counteract the stress of the Christmas season,” Miller Wallace said. “I invite you all to sit back and close your eyes.”
The concert aimed to carry patrons all the way back to Bethlehem. As the first bells twinkled, it seemed like all the stress left the crowd. Musicians and audience members alike seemed to have a good time, clapping and ooh-ing and aah-ing at the impressive music filling the air. The finale of “O Come, All Ye Faithful” got the crowd to its feet as Holdsworth directed audience members when to sing along with the bells and brass.