Sitting in the Grand Opera House, I was amazed by the music created by my fellow Mercerians. “A Grand Mercer Christmas” was pre-recorded in 2012 to be aired nationwide on PBS in December 2013 through Georgia Public Broadcasting and Brandenburg Productions.
The show was comprised of students and faculty from Mercer’s Townsend School of Music and the Robert McDuffie Center for Strings. Mercer Singers was directed by Dr. Stanley Roberts. Program host, Robert McDuffie, and McDuffie’s Center director, Amy Schwartz Moretti, both performed alongside Mercer students.
It was evident that numerous hours and enormous effort had been poured into creating this one grand performance. The process for recording “A Grand Mercer Christmas” took roughly three hours each night. The cameras were set to run up and down the aisle ways. For safety reasons and to help the recording process, the audience was asked not to leave their seats. The evening did not follow the format of a typical concert. The process was stop-and-go, as the producers often requested retakes of various musical segments.
Watching the completed televised production a year later was a pleasant reminder of the experience. Seeing “A Grand Mercer Christmas” in its entirety brought the surreal experience to life. Recognizing friends and fellow students on the television screen was impressive and the final production was very rewarding. Mercer’s Townsend School of Music made the magic happen. “A Grand Mercer Christmas” highlights what Mercer University strives to achieve: excellence in everything we do. The PBS broadcast promoted Mercer University, and was a good example of the high level of education taking place on campus and in the Townsend School of Music.