The Iroquois County Christmas Cantata dates have been set for the 44th annual presentation: 7 p.m. Dec. 20; 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Dec. 22; and 7 p.m. Dec. 23. All performances will take place at First Christian Church, 546 N. Sixth, Watseka.

Co-directors of the cantata are Erik Parmenter, Jessica Fehland and Denise Kosik.

This year’s cantata will be “He Shall Be Called” and the musical concentrates on the names of Jesus. Audience favorites, such as a sing-a-long, the children’s Joyful Noyz choir, and solo performances by several talented cantata members, will be featured.

Singers in the 50-member cantata come from all walks of life and represent many area churches and communities. There are no auditions – if you want to participate, you can choose the first rehearsal which best suits your schedule: 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 13, or 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 15. All rehearsals take place at First Christian Church and there is a small fee to help offset the cost of a cantata book, supplemental music and rehearsal CD. The adult choir is for those in 7th grade and up.

Joyful Noyz is for students in grades 4-6. Rehearsals for this group will start in November.

For more information, contact Kosik at or Fehland at

There are no tickets for any of the cantata performances but reservations will need to be made in advance. The ticket number is 815-317-6165, and the number will be effective by the first rehearsals on Oct. 13. When you call this number, please leave your name, the number of seats you want to reserve, the date and time of the performance you want to attend and a contact number.

Reservations are free but donations are accepted at the door to help the cantata support a chosen organization. Last year’s cantata proceeds were given to Mahlah the comfort dog. This year’s recipient will be Iroquois Memorial Hospital Hospice, which is a highly regarded program dedicated to surround patients and families with comfort and support.