BEMIDJI -- A new holiday tradition featuring Bemidji State University musicians and singers is planned on Friday, Dec. 6 at the Beaux Arts Ballroom on campus.

While the 50-year-old Madrigal Dinners are on hiatus, the first Holiday Gala will feature students and faculty members from both the instrumental and vocal sections of the BSU music department.

“This has been something we’ve talked about for some time to seek out and find opportunities to showcase many of the ensembles across the department,” said Dwight Jilek, director of choral activities at BSU. Jilek and Scott Guidry, director of bands, are coordinating on the event.

“Dwight and I decided it’s so seldom that we get to come together as a department and collaborate in a way like this,” Guidry said. “We thought this would be an opportune time to try and do that.

“We are putting together smaller units,” Guidry added. “You’ll see a brass quintet, woodwind quintet, jazz combo and a number of other combinations that you don’t normally see in our band concerts with huge band on stage. It’s going to be kind of a smorgasbord of small units.”

About 100 students and faculty will be involved in the gala.

“When we thought of this event we wanted to be an opportunity for community members to dress up for an evening, hear some wonderful music and just have a night out to ring in the holiday time and enjoy what our department has to offer,” Jilek said. “It should be a very enjoyable night.”

Tickets for the gala are $30. Hors d'oeuvres and dessert are included, and a cash bar will be available. Cocktail attire is requested.

Tickets may be purchased at the BSU Alumni and Foundation offices in the David Park House, by calling 218-755-2762 or online at

All proceeds will go to the BSU Department of Music.

“It’s just a night to dress up and come out and enjoy some wonderful music and have some good food and drink,” Guidry said.