The tune "Hymn to Joy," made famous in the fourth movement of Beethoven's monumental Ninth Symphony, receives the variation on a theme treatment during this week's prelude by Charles Callahan. Set as a seven movement partita, each brief section pays homage to venerable compositional forms such as the etude, chorale, and trio. The 16th century German hymn "In Thee Is Gladness" is set as a Baroque bicinium, a nod to the past by Paul Manz. A stately hymn-like recessional from 19th century England, "Choral Song" by Samuel Sebastian Wesley, concludes morning worship.
During the 11:00 service, the Chancel Choir and flutist Aaron McGrew offer "Celtic Communion" by prolific American composer Mark Hayes. His setting incorporates the ancient Gaelic tune Bunessan paired with two verses of Reginald Heber's eucharistic text "Bread of the world in mercy broken" and a concluding excerpt from the circa 5th century poem "St. Patrick's Breastplate", traditionally attributed to Saint Patrick himself.
At 6:00 p.m., come join us for the annual Taste of Plymouth in our new monthly Dinner Church format. Bobby and Blair will lead us in song as we worship together and welcome area students to Plymouth.
Seven, outside of being a very biblical number, binds together several works this Sunday morning.
Scherzo in Italian means "joke" or a "jest." In musical terms, it refers to a light, often humorous movement from a larger form such as a sonata or symphony. For the prelude, a stand-alone scherzo by British composer Alan Ridout will be played in the meter of, mostly, 7/8 time. John Rutter's "Toccata in 7" ends the services on a whimsical, albeit asymmetrical, note.
The Chancel Choir ushers in the new program year at both services this Jubilee Sunday morning with an offering of the Rutter classic anthem "For the Beauty of the Earth."
At 6:00 p.m., Bobby will be joined by cantor and violinist Hannah Walters, banjo player Josh Beard, and cellist Daniel Delaney for a festive Jubilee evening service.
Three musical meditations, each with a distinct subject for their focus, will be offered this Sunday morning.
"Meditation" by British organist Melvin Bird is an elegant and reverent work composed as an homage to composer/organist Jean Langlais, utilizing allusions to Langlais' own harmonic language. The well-known "Meditation" from Jules Massenet's 1894 opera Thais for solo violin and orchestra will be offered by violin Amy Welsh. The work was originally used as entrance music during Act II and, with the marking of "Andante religioso," implied a religious solemnity. The final jubilant meditation from "Five Meditations on 'Wondrous Love'" by American composer Ronald Perera closes morning worship.
At 6:00 p.m., Bobby and Blair are joined by fellow collaborators Alan Skowron on guitar, Peter Strening on bass, and percussionist Mike Hamilton for a spirit-led evening service.