The Summer Choir returns for their last appearance this season offering Hal Hopson's arrangement of the infamous Pachelbel's Canon at the 10 a.m. service. Entitled "Canon of Praise," the text is adapted by Hopson from Psalm 103. Hal Hopson has been a fixture of sacred choral music for decades. He excels at arranging and composing accessible choral anthems of fine quality and it was a privilege to have met him at the church music workshop Hal and I attended this summer in Texas.
Johann Pachelbel (1653-1706) was a German composer, teacher, and organist who achieved great popularity in his lifetime. His composition style utilized simple and transparent counterpoint with an emphasis on harmonic and melodic clarity. His chorale prelude on the early Lutheran hymn by Johann Agricola, “Ich ruf’ zu dir, Herr Jesu Christ” (I call to you, Lord Jesus Christ) begins the service.
Pachelbel had two sons who also followed in his musical footsteps. Charles Theodore Pachelbel (1690-1750) became one of the first European composers to reside in the New Colonies, settling in Charleston, South Carolina. Very little of his works survive, just including a few vocal and choral pieces. The oldest son, Wilhelm Hieronymus Pachelbel (1686-1764), has six surviving works, all of them written for the keyboard. Half of the remaining music was influenced by the emerging Classical style of the time. This Sunday, we'll hear his "Toccata in G Major," reminiscent of his father's Baroque contrapuntal leanings, at the postlude.
Each week, Director of Music Mark Heiskanen writes a Music Minute previewing the upcoming Sunday's musical offerings and occasionally opines on other music-related topics.
We are blessed by an engaging music program at Plymouth!
Mark Heiskanen has been Plymouth's Director of Music since September 2017. Originally from Northeast Ohio, Mark has experience and great interest in a diverse range of musical styles including jazz, rock, musical theatre, and gospel. He is thrilled to serve a congregation and staff that values diversity and inclusion in all facets of life.