Townsend School of Music Presents Free Christmas Concert at The Grand to be Recorded for National Television Broadcast

Jesse Mercer statue

MACON – Mercer University’s Townsend School of Music will present A Grand Mercer Christmas, a free concert for the community, on Friday, Nov. 30, and Saturday, Dec. 1, at 7:30 p.m. at The Grand Opera House, a performing arts center of Mercer, located at 651 Mulberry St. in historic downtown Macon. The program, which will be recorded live by Emmy Award-winning Brandenburg Productions for broadcast on Georgia Public Broadcasting and PBS stations across the nation during the 2013 holiday season, will feature two internationallyacclaimed ensembles: the Mercer Singers, conducted by Dr. Stanley Roberts, and the students and faculty of the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings. Acclaimed violinist, Macon native and Center for Strings founder Robert McDuffie will serve as master of ceremonies. 
Holiday favorites alongside new selections composed especially for this concert make the program fun and interesting for all ages and musical tastes, from the traditional “What Child Is This” and “What Sweeter Music” to American composer Matt Catingub’s thrilling “Christmas Medley for Strings.” Mercer Singers and the McDuffie Center String Ensemble join forces to premiere two new orchestrations by composer Randol Bass: “Glory to God” and “Exultate Justi.” The concert also spotlights acclaimed violinists Robert McDuffie and Amy Schwartz Moretti, director of the Center for Strings and the Caroline Paul King Chair in Violin, in a performance of J.S. Bach’s “Concerto for Two Violins” with the ensemble.
Although admission to this concert is free, tickets are required and limited to four per person. Reserve tickets by calling (478) 301-5470 or visit the box office weekdays between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. For more information visit Because this concert will be recorded for television broadcast, children under the age of five will not be allowed inside the theatre. Seating is general admission on a first-come, first served basis. Tickets must be picked up from the box office at The Grand Opera House, located at 651 Mulberry St., by 5 p.m. on Nov. 28. Any tickets not claimed by that date will be released to the public. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and patrons are strongly encouraged to arrive no later than 7 p.m. to find a seat.
A Grand Mercer Christmas is one of the most highly anticipated events in the history of the Townsend School of Music. This concert and television broadcast will bring unparalleled national exposure for Mercer University and Macon. For more information about Mercer University please visit
About Townsend School of Music
Mercer University’s Townsend School of Music, the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings and the Townsend-McAfee Institute for Graduate Studies offer undergraduate and graduate professional music studies in a comprehensive university environment. Townsend is nationally recognized for its outstanding faculty, award-winning students, performance ensembles and state-of-the-art facilities. The McDuffie Center, a special institute within Townsend School of Music, is a highly selective program that prepares string students for success in the real world. Students study with some of America’s most renowned string musicians, receiving music instruction of conservatoryquality, while earning an academically well-rounded education from a comprehensive, nationally recognized university. For more information and acomplete listing of this season’s concerts please visit or call (478) 301-5751.