Astoria celebrates Winter Solstice

December 9, 2017 by  

Many in Astoria will be marking their calendars and heading to Manhattan to celebrate the Winter Solstice at Paul Winter’s Solstice Celebration in mid-December.

The three-day multi-media event will have vocalists, musicians, dancers, and drummers that will depict the ancient rituals associated with the year’s longest night.

Paul Winter will be performing on his soprano saxophone along with Paul McCandless on woodwinds, Eugene Friesen on cello,and Paul Sullivan on piano. Jamey Haddad will be the percussionist, and Eliot Wadopian will be on bass. Tim Brumfield will be presenting selected pieces on the organ, and Scott Sloan will be performing on the sun gong. Gospel singer Theresa Thomason will be the featured guest, and 25 drummers and dancers from the Forces of Nature Dance Theatre will be presenting a contemporary take on Solstice ancient rituals.

The venue has a cavernous space that hosts a 150-foot ceiling. There the world’s largest sun gong rises up to 12 stories high as the giant earth globe spins down like a little planet. The extravaganza of a concert can only be done at the Cathedral as it has a seven-second reverberation matching only the Grand Canyon.

The Winter Solstice Celebration will be at 8:00 pm December 14 and 15, and 2:00 pm and 7:30 pm on December 16 at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, 1047 Amsterdam Avenue, New York. This venue is at the intersection of Amsterdam Avenue and 111 Street, Manhattan.