Since 1947, Wartburg College has presented Christmas with Wartburg, a musical celebration that feature the talents of more than 350 students from Wartburg Choir, Castle Singers, Wind Ensemble, Ritterchor, St. Elizabeth Chorale, Kammerstreicher, Kantorei and Handbell Choir.

“My favorite part is that all of the ensembles, the choirs and the instrumental ensembles and even handbells this year get to come together as one mass ensemble that gets to represent Wartburg,” Payton Brinkman, president of the Wind Ensemble, said.

Each year there is a different theme with new songs for each ensemble to perform. This year’s theme is Behold the Mystery.

“We have to prepare mentally,” Brinkman said. “There is a lot of talking with both ensembles about what it means to us to share this music with others and what it means to be able to perform at this level, especially this year with being videotaped. We’re kind of taking it to another level and really trying to bring everything we do here at Wartburg to all those other people to make their Christmas season better.”

There are four total performances of the show in both West Des Moines and Waverly. The first performance is at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 6 at Lutheran Church of Hope in West Des Moines. The following rehearsals are hosted in Waverly at Neumann Auditorium at Wartburg College.

These performances are at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 7, and at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 8. Tickets are available for purchase at

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