12/24: Christmas Eve Services

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A Christmas Eve service is not a performance, and it shouldn’t be treated as one. Nonetheless, Cleveland’s downtown churches will offer plenty of great sounds today. Expect them to glow within their expansive stone interiors. For Episcopalians, Trinity Cathedral (2230 Euclid Ave., 216.771.3630) begins its late-night service with a prelude at 10:30 p.m. with the Trinity Cathedral Choir and Trinity Chamber Players performing Antonio Vivaldi’s Magnificat, followed by a choral Eucharist at 11 featuring 16th-century German baroque composer Hans Leo Hassler’s choral setting, “Verbum caro factum est” (“Word is made flesh”). For Presbyterians, the Old Stone Church (91 Public Square, 216.241.6145) offers a 5 p.m. family service featuring the Old Stone children’s choir, followed by an 8 p.m. candlelight service with the Old Stone adult choir. Catholics who head down to the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist (1007 Superior Ave., 216.771.6666, saintjohncathedral.com) for the 10 p.m. service will find a mass with music provided by the 25-voice Cathedral Choir. The semi-professional group, under the direction of Gregory Heiselman, has released six recordings and won WCLV’s regional Jubilation Choir Competition last year. Admission to all the services is free. — Gill

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