Fredericksburg Insider: The Singing Christmas Tree

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Tony Maples Photography


If you’ve never seen a Singing Christmas Tree, now’s your chance. The Pedernales Creative Arts Alliance and the Pioneer Museum will be presenting the Singing Christmas Tree twice this weekend, on Friday and Saturday nights (December 16 and 17, 2016) at 6:30 p.m. in the Wagon Yard.

A Community Effort

Singing Christmas Tree Under Construction

Photo: Robert C Deming

Like many Christmas trees, this one comes in a box and has to be assembled. The frame is steel with wood platforms for the singers. Here Franz Dieter Kemper is bolting it together. Dieter, who is retired from the Luftwaffe and lives in Fredericksburg, builds many of the sets used by the Fredericksburg Theater Company, and it is no surprise to see him here. The project was underwritten by the Pedernales Creative Arts Alliance, who provide scholarships in the arts, and also present Oktoberfest in Fredericksburg the first weekend of October each year.

Where it all started in 1933: Belhaven College, Jackson, Mississippi.

Belhaven College Singing Christmas Tree


The tradition started at Belhaven but has spread worldwide. The Fredericksburg Singing Christmas Tree won’t look exactly like this, but you get the idea. The local project was conceived by Regina Rosenwinkel, local singer, who had sang in one in Germany and is always looking for another venue to perform in. The choir is directed by Jeryl Hoover, former mayor, ED of the Pioneer Museum, and long-time principal of the Fredericksburg Theater Company. The presentation includes Carol of the Bells, Jesu Joy of Man’s Desiring, Joseph Liebe Joseph Mein, Kling Glochken, Little Drummer Boy, and Do You Hear What I Hear?