Choir 2011 summer tour 'No finer choir'
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Professing there is no finer choir in all the world than the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, President Thomas S. Monson welcomed invited guests to the final concert on its summer tour on Monday evening, June 27.
Speaking at a reception prior to the final concert of the choir's summer tour in Toronto's Roy Thomson Hall, President Monson said that when he became president of Church, he appointed himself as adviser to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, which includes the Orchestra at Temple Square and the Bells on Temple Square. It is, he said, one of his favorite assignments.
"The Choir goes on tour every two years, and I've been privileged to attend the final concert of the 2009 tour and now the 2011 tour," he said.
"Many times on a Sunday morning in Salt Lake City my wife and I will attend their weekly presentation of Music and the Spoken Word."
He spoke of the popularity of the choir's Christmas concerts, which are attended by more than 80,000 people each year.
"I do not hesitate to profess that there is no finer choir in the entire world, and in combination with the Orchestra at Temple Square, their music is magnificent."
President Monson said most of the guests had probably listened to recordings by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir or watched performances on television.
"Until you've experienced a live concert, however, you cannot appreciate all that they have to offer," he declared. "As your fellow Canadian Hana Gartner (a well-known journalist in Canada) said of the choir when they performed in Roy Thomson Hall in 2007, 'The sound these men and women create is not just music to the ears. You also hear it with your heart.' If you have not before experienced one of their live concerts, prepare for an unforgettable experience."
The reception was attended by government leaders — national, provincial, city and community — and representatives from religious, consular, education, business, industry, the arts and entertainment communities.
Some 2,200 people attended each of the two concerts in Roy Thomson Hall, a matinee at 2 p.m. and an evening performance at 8 p.m. To the delight of audiences, each concert included a local guest conductor for an encore performance of the Canadian version of "This Land Is Your Land." Father Thomas Rosica, a Canadian priest who is the chief executive officer of Canada's Salt and Light Catholic Television Network, took the conductor's baton for the matinee. At the evening performance, Jerry Gray, a founding member of the Canadian folk-singing group The Travellers, led the choir and orchestra in the same song. Mr. Gray is the lyricist of the popular song.