• Candlelight Carol
  • History of the Candlelight Carol Service 

    In 1963, under the direction of Robert McGill, the Hendrix College Choir began presenting a service of lessons and carols, modeled after the annual Christmas Eve service at King's College in Cambridge, England. The Candlelight Carol Service has since become an important Hendrix tradition. Each year over 1,200 people attend one of the four on-campus performances during the last week of classes. Immediately following final exams, the Choir tours the region, performing the service at United Methodist churches in Arkansas and neighboring states. Repertoire featured in the Candlelight Carol Services changes yearly, and includes works from the 15th century to the present day. 

    Enthusiasts of organ music greatly enjoy the service, which features Hendrix College organist Timothy Allen performing works on our splendid two-manual organ, constructed in 1997 by Little Rock organ builders Nichols & Simpson, Inc. (you can read more about the instrument  here).

    Hendrix College Candlelight Carol Competition

    We are pleased to announce that composer Charles West of England was selected as the winner of the 2018 Candlelight Carol Competition. His carol, On Christmas Night All Christians Sing, was selected from a field of over 75 submissions. For this year's competition, composers were asked to write an original work that borrowed from or quotes a pre-existing public domain Christmas carol or liturgical chant. A group of finalists was reviewed by a committee including guest judges Dr. Miguel Felipe (University of Arizona), Dr. Ann Howard Jones (Professor Emerita, Boston University), Hendrix College music majors Blythe Bull and Noah Adams, and Dr. Andrew Morgan, conductor of the Hendrix Choir. Dr. West will receive $1,000.00 prize for his composition.

    Guidelines for the 2019 competition will be posted in March. Please email Dr. Andrew Morgan with any questions (morgana@hendrix.edu).

    Past competition winners have included Behold, I Come by Janet Wheeler, Gentle Mary Laid Her Child by Alan MacMillan, and A Christmas Lullaby by Edmund Jolliffe. Competition judges in previous years include Dr. Ryan Board (Pepperdine University), Dr. Deanna Joseph (Georgia State University), Dr. Stephen Caldwell (University of Arkansas), Dr. Dominick DiOrio (Indiana University), and Dr. Matthew Mehaffey (University of Minnesota).