We were on our way to St. John's Lutheran Church of Salisbury, NC to be a part of our first outing in the spring of 2010. We walked in and most of us were really surprised at the "look" of the place. I personally wasn't expecting carpet, but there was carpet and there was lots of padding under the carpet no less. We began rehearsing and it was as if we had been singing awhile. Most people had a lot of energy in spite of starting the day early. We met Karl Kinard and his lovely wife Rosemary. They were a neat couple but looked a lot younger than I imagined. The newly composed piece of Dr. Weber's, Come Let us Sing was written for her honor and was commissioned by her husband. We found out that the commission was rejected, and that Dr. Weber graciously offered this piece to the Kinards as a gesture of appreciation for their work in church music and their contributions to the music department of Lenoir-Rhyne University. Mr. Kinard responded by saying that the money for the commission would then go to the A Cappella Choir fund and we were very appreciative.
The premier performance of the piece was such that Dr. Weber would have little to complain about. Although, as well as this blogger thought it went is somewhat relative since I was in the back row and could not hear the overall sound. However, what I could hear was a nicely, cleanly performed piece. The piece came to life in a special way because the Hymn of the Day was "If you but Trust God to Guide You" (WER NUR DEN LIEBEN GOTT) which was the tune that Dr. Weber expounded upon in his composition. This brought unity to this part of the service.
All in all the worship service this morning went well. The choir sang with great sensitivity for the most part. This blogger forgot the words to "Let the Same Mind," a piece he has been singing for years now!
A final word about this morning's experience could be a word regarding the lunch that was provided. We all really enjoyed our lunch so much that sleeping was the necessary activity to follow such a lunch. Most of us, however, were disappointed that sleeping was hardly an option.
From St. John's, we made our way to North Kannapolis Baptist Church. This was the first time in my memory of our choir performing in a Baptist church. It was neat to bridge traditions and to extend the connection with Charles Morrow, the Director of Music at NKBC and an alum of our choir. We had many alums come up to sing with us on "O Day Full of Grace," much to our surprise. While we love our guest conductor, John Ross, some of us were a bit emotional during "O Day" because we miss our conductor and wish him to get well soon. This performance went off without a hitch. Most of the tempos were brisk and we were happy to do that. A lot of us were very tired and the room was not such that slow tempos in a cappella pieces would be appropriate. The concert ended well and the people seemed appreciative that we were there. We were appreciative that we could serve in their ministry in this way.
All in all, we had a successful day and we look forward to a couple more rehearsals to fine tune some details. Our hearts and minds are focused on God's work in our life as a choir in this unique time. We also remember our courageous leader who God is allowing not to be with us. We are thankful for the talents and the wit of John Ross to keep us going. Thank you Maestro! Stay tuned--