Annual Music Report/Corrections

Part of the Minister of Music’s Annual Report contribution were dropped from the final version of the Annual Report that you all read.  This was an error.  Here is the full and complete music report, along with the corrected names for the 2016 Senior and Junior Choir members:

A wonderfully active year in the musical life of our church reflects the current vitality of the congregation!  At every turn there is something exciting to report about.

We began the worship year with a series on Mysticism.  For a service on Hildegard of Bingen, the women of the choir sang a chant by the 13th century mystic, with solos from Williams College students, Lucy Page and Daniel Potter.   The choir also learned a new anthem based on Hildegard’s writings, and I presented organ music by Frank Ferko based on her music.  Besides these items, new choir music acquisitions included opportunities to use our new djembe, which we are using in honor of Cecil and Betty Harvey, and played by Williams student Austin Paul.

During Lent, Williams students Andrew Aramini, piano and saxophonist, Philemon Abel helped us create jazz worship.  Among other selections, the choir sang a piece by Bobby McFerrin, we sang as a congregation with the jazz musicians, and scripture was performed with beautiful improvisation to color the text.  Later in Lent, Daniel Potter played music by Samuel Barber at the organ, and a multi-generational choir sang in the Palm Sunday Pageant.  For a service of Tenebrae on Maundy Thursday, we used music from the Taizé community

On Mothers’ Day, our Williams College students led us in worship.   Again, Daniel Potter played the organ prelude, and Colin Williams played a horn solo piece.  Later in May, Youth Sunday gave the Junior Choir a chance to sing a new piece using the djembe.  With the end of the academic year, we saw Junior Choir members Lola Bohle, Eleanor McPartland and Teague Murphy graduating to Mount Greylock High School, and our faithful Moira Jones and daughter, Sophie, off to Washington, D.C.

“Rosin the Beaux,” a local folk-music group was featured for Worship at the Clark on the first June Sunday.  The group is led by Deb Burns, and includes John Case, Rick Dovey, and Alan and Pat Dunlavey.

Our summer music included Men’s Choir on July 10, and Women’s Choir on August 14.  Choir members Annette Triquère, Pat Phillips, Margy O’Connor, Jina Ford, Leon Aalberts and Penny Bucky sang solo or ensemble pieces on other Sundays.  In addition, friends of the church performed: former choir member Wendy Van Orden; Williams student flutist, Calvin Ludwig; vocalist, Daniel Aalberts; our own ‘cellist, Karen McComish; and Bennington musicians Douglas Amos, trumpet, and Jay Sager, marimba.

For the beginning of our year-long study of the Gospel of John, Colin Williams joined me in playing a series of variations on the hymn, Divinum Mysterium, based on the first chapter of the book.

In October, I was privileged to work with a committee consisting of Nancy McIntire, Judy Reichert, Susan Smith, and Dick Steege to plan the first concert in the Markgraf Memorial Organ Series.  Williamstown organist, Timothy Pyper, played an exhilarating program on our fine instrument on the afternoon of October 30th.  A good audience of about 60 people thrilled at his virtuosity!  What a treat to hear our instrument in his capable hands.   We honor the memory of Hodge and Nancy Markgraf, long-term active members of this church, and supporters of our music program, and intend to follow the success of this inaugural recital with another program in 2017.

In December, we held a Wednesday evening Taizé service with student musicians Sarah Stevenson, flute, and Kevin Zhou, violin.  The Pageant included participation from members of both Junior and Senior Choirs.  The Christmas Eve service was enlivened by an augmented choir.

On Sundays when I was away, we were fortunate to have substitute organists Tim Pyper, Jane Jenkins and Jacque Metsma.

As the above report makes clear, a successful program includes lots of participants.  There is quite a list of names here; but, of course, that’s not everyone.   Behind the scenes, I must thank the parents of our young Junior Choir singers for helping with rehearsals, providing Thursday afternoon snacks, and transporting children.

Yours in Christ,

Edwin Lawrence, Minister of Music

Senior Choir

Sopranos Altos Tenors & Basses
Penny Bucky Jina Ford Phil Smith
Moira Jones Muriel Rice Leon Aalberts
Sophie Jones Holly Smith Mart Mulder
Margy O’Connor Carol Stocking Jeff Watson
Pat Phillips Susan Yates-Mulder
Elizabeth Smith

Junior Choir

first year (green ribbon) second year (maroon ribbon) third year (lilac ribbon) fifth year (silver ribbon)
Fiona Gordon Eleanor McPartland Lola Bohle Teague Murphy
Mia Harding Effie Skinner Everett Bayliss
Izabel Harding
Rutledge Skinner