I met with the choirlet last night, and enjoyed the rehearsal very much.
As soon as I walked in the door, though, they asked, “So, what did you think of the praise band?”
In meaning voices.
They had a lot of very interesting things to say about music and worship. There was some rough language, frankly, so I won’t reproduce the conversation here.
But I mentioned that the Worship Task Force is trying to move toward a more cohesive style of worship. We have consistently excellent sermons, and the music is now pretty satisfying in both services, or definitely on the way. But we want to have the music, the sermon, and a number of other multisensory elements work together and support one another.
So far, the “technology” —
And may I just say here how much I hate the use of the term “technology” for “computers”? An atlatl is an example of technology,too, and it is just confusing and stupid to say “technology” when what you really mean is “computer.” I have to put up with that a lot, too, in several contexts in which I don’t feel that I can complain. Thank you for listening.
— the “technology” tends to be screwed up. The participatory elements come and go. The anthem is often unrelated to the message and the opportunities for reinforcement of the seasonal and scriptural points get lost.
Which is perfectly normal. In worship, and — as CD pointed out — in many styles of music, too, there is a feeling that “polished” is the opposite of “authentic.” No one in our happy little church wants to have the megachurch/televangelist experience of feeling as though the service is a stage show. But I think that having the elements support one another will make the service more satisfying, without the people’s really even thinking about the change. And I think that the whole “No, that’s the wrong screen — uh, sorry, we thought we’d have the words up —” is distracting.
The choirlet played a bluegrass song for us at one point, and CD took the opportunity to mention how excellent the quality of their music was. “The pitch is spot on,” she said. She raved about their timing. I agreed fervently.
I think the choirlet are converts to the idea of precision and quality in the music. They are fun to work with, and good at arranging pieces. They have been able to embrace the idea of working on pitch and dynamics without losing the pleasure they take in belting out a good country gospel tune.
Next, the praise band?
5 thoughts on “Wednesday April 9, 2008”
Hooray for bluegrass in church! I guess I’m just a down-home, tent revival kind of gal.
Second the motion! Even when it’s “By The Marks”! Hooray for bluegrass in church!
one group at a time, one group at a time
I know nothing about your praise band. That being said, as someone who was hired into a hornet’s nest of a music program (we’re talking issues that created a church feud with many members who posed ultimatums and lost), I must warn you that you are not a wanted feature in their group. It’s not that you have no use and it’s not that they wouldn’t gladly have some improvement, it’s that you are still an outsider.
It took almost a year for me to bring the majority of the choir around to my side and even now some come and go in huffs. That was with me being hired as the leader, placed in charge from step one. If you’re someone who appears to be on the fringes of The Dark Side, then when suggest changes they will take up immediate resistance to you no matter what they say to the contrary.
I am not making this up.
@chanthaboune – I believe you, and that you know whereof you speak, and I appreciate your wise words.
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