First Churches Sanctuary

Welcome Yule

"Welcome Yule: A Midwinter Celebration" has been warming the hearts of Western MA audiences for over 30 years. The First Night show celebrates the return of the light with a festive, family show filled with music, dance, songs and stories. Drive the dark away with this review of some of the company's favorite wassails, carols, dances and seasonal stories. Words in the program make it easy to join in the singing. Come join the Welcome Yule family to cheer you through the coldest days of winter and to keep you warm until spring.

2-2:45 at First Churches Sanctuary

The Well Tempered Ukes

The Well Tempered Ukes are not your usual oldies band. They pluck, strum, and harmonize their way through the greatest hits of the last 500 years- parlor, pop, and art songs from the renaissance to rock 'n' roll. The Western Massachusetts trio of Robin Hoffman, Marlene Wong, and Richard Perlmutter put on a fun and educational show with unique arrangements, original songs, and a petting zoo of vintage and contemporary ukuleles of all sizes.

3-3:45 at First Churches Sanctuary

The Nields for Kids

Even after 25 years of acclaimed music-making, when you see Nerissa and Katryna Nields on stage there is still a sense of two siblings getting together to put on a show. Maybe that is why they connect so well with the audiences at their kids show. The energy of the Nields banter and camaraderie connect intuitively with the youngsters. It is as if the Nields are just bigger, grown-up very talented kids. Come sing-along to songs like "Hi, Ho the Rattlin' Bog," "Going to the Zoo," and "Anna, Kick a Hole in the Sky."

4-4:45 and 5-5:45 at First Churches Sanctuary

The Nields

The Nields — sisters Nerissa and Katryna — have lit up the folk circuit since 1991. With 17 albums, major and independent record and publishing deals, performances with 10,000 Maniacs, The Band, James Taylor, and the Indigo Girls, they have lived the Rock & Roll life. Since becoming mothers (each sister has a daughter and a son) they have gone on to broaden their repertoire with children's CDs, a DVD and a book "All Together Singing in the Kitchen: Creative Ways to Make and Listen to Music as a Family." The Nields have just released a double album greatest hits collection and are at work on music for a soundtrack to Nerissa's forthcoming novel, "The Big Idea," as well as a Christmas CD.

7-7:45 at First Churches Sanctuary

Valley Jazz Voices

Valley Jazz Voices is a community jazz choir based in Northampton and directed by Jeff Olmstead. Founded in 2014, the Valley Jazz Voices are thirty singers of all ages who perform swinging renditions of hot and cool jazz tunes. They sing everything from bebop to bossa nova, classic jazz to contemporary tunes. At First Night, the Valley Jazz Voices will be accompanied by the Andy Jaffe Trio.

8-8:45 at First Churches Sanctuary

Evelyn Harris with Miro Sprague

After singing with the acclaimed a cappella group Sweet Honey in the Rock for 18 years, Evelyn Harris moved to the Pioneer Valley in 2002. When she got here she asked singers and performers to recommend a piano accompanist. The name that kept coming up was that of Miro Sprague. Miro was only 17 at the time, but he was already a formidable player. Sprague went on to study at the prestigious Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz Performance. Evelyn Harris loves the way Miro plays. "Singers always dream of an accompanist that thrills and excites, inspires and pushes the envelope," says Harris who adds, "Come out and celebrate a new year filled with new horizons, new blessings and life propelled by love."

9:15-10 and 10:15-11 at First Churches Sanctuary

Choose a venue for more details about performers and times.

All First Night performances are family-friendly, but these are especially suitable for younger children.