Music of the Month: Festival Gloria

Description

Jacob B. Weber has composed a thrilling Gloria for SATB, organ, and brass quartet. Featuring joyous symphonic writing, the piece begins with a fanfare interplay between brass and organ, leading directly into angelic strains of “Gloria in excelsis Deo!” Moments of warm, rich choral writing complement the text. Set entirely in Latin, this setting can be a featured addition to any high school or college Christmas concert, or, when appropriate, a festival Divine Service setting during the Church Year.

Train Students to Sing Hymns Artfully

 

Music of the Month: For Faith, We Praise You, Lord

Commissioned for the 150th anniversary of Concordia Publishing House on September 11, 2019, pastor and hymnwriter Stephen P. Starke, and Kevin J. Hildebrand, kantor at Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, have produced For Faith, We Praise You, Lord, a sturdy hymn written to the tune VERITY.

 

The five-stanza hymn is scored for SATB choir, congregation, organ, and trumpet. The hymn charts the Christian life lived in faith, from birth in Holy Baptism, to the altar at the Lord’s Supper, and into the harvest field as workers in God’s earthly kingdom. The post below showcases each stanza of this hymn along with explanations and reflections on the lyrics. 

Product of the Month: The Tree of Life

The new choral piece “The Tree of Life” depicts the fall of Adam and redemption through Christ, framing both in imagery drawn from the Garden of Eden. The musical arrangement matches the changing tone of the text through the four stanzas—from innocence through shame to redemption and triumph, finally ending with quiet assurance.

Product of the Month: Carol of the Lamb

The Old Testament is full of promises of a Savior, so what better way to celebrate Christmas than by looking at how those promises are fulfilled in the New Testament? “Carol of the Lamb,” a new choral piece for Christmas, is a perfect way to bring this idea to your congregation, as it features breathtaking music and references to Psalm 23.

Music for Luther’s Morning Prayer and Luther’s Evening Prayer

Scripture teaches us to bring our needs daily to our Heavenly Father in Christ’s name. To help families and children understand this important truth, Martin Luther wrote two short prayers for individuals and families to use in the morning and evening before going to sleep. Now the simplicity and devotion of Luther’s Morning Prayer and its companion, Luther’s Evening Prayer, have been put to music by John A. Behnke.

Music for the Season after Pentecost

Pentecost is a long and wonderful season when we focus on how God grows His Church through His Word. This is a time when our music selections can reflect biblical themes—such as peace, baptism, hope and comfort, or missions—rather than specific holidays. Here are some music selections your church can use during the season after Pentecost.

Singing the O Antiphons during Advent

During the Advent season, churches may set aside time to reflect on the O Antiphons of Advent through worship and song. What are these O Antiphons and how can church musicians incorporate them into the church’s song this Advent season?

Product of the Month: O Holy Night

With its satisfying harmonies yet simple tune, “O Holy Night” is a familiar hymn that has become a staple in Christmas worship. This year, CPH Music released a new setting of this popular hymn in partnership with composer John Behnke. Learn more about this unique and captivating arrangement, and explore some of Behnke’s other works as a handbell, choral, and organ composer.

Building Rapport with Musicians at Your Church

This post is adapted from A Novice’s Guide to Directing the Church Choir by Kenneth T. Kosche. Though written specifically for choirs, the suggestions can apply to any church ensemble.

Rapport is one of those relational terms that most easily defines itself by its presence or absence. How well you get along with your choir and they with you is a measure of your rapport. There are no surefire solutions that will work for everyone to establish rapport, though there are some points of advice to offer.

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