Being in my twelfth year as Director of Music at Cedar Lane UU Church is quite astounding. Upon arriving as the Interim Director in the Fall of 2008, my desire was quite simple; to facilitate a cast of volunteer musicians, adult and youth, to do their best in producing beautiful music. Fortunately, it all worked out and I was appointed Director of Music in June of 2009.
Music has been integral to Cedar Lane's history and I'm proud to have a part in fostering and nurturing our Music Ministry, and that includes encouraging and developing the congregation members to become a vibrant singing church community. We’ve come a long way in that regard. Why, there are some songs for which members don’t even need to look at the music anymore. They actually clap, lean a little to one side or the other, and sing with abandon. Bravo, Cedar Laners!
In more intimate encounters I lead the forty-plus member Cedar Lane Choir, the Youth Choir, our three octave Ring Out Bell Choir and our five octave Bell Canto Bell Choir. I’m thrilled to work with these ensembles and their dedicated musicians to create rich tapestries of music that blend social justice topics with masterpieces and p0pular songs. Leading our Choir in works by Mozart, Brahms, Vaughan Williams, Rutter, Pinkham, Lauridsen and UU composers Elizabeth Alexander and Clif Hardin has been inspiring, but I never imagined that I would lead choral renditions of Everyday People, I Am Woman, and Let’s Go Fly A Kite. Bell Canto has rung Yigdal Elohim Chai to honor Yom Kippur and Coldplay’s Viva la Vida. Our Youth Choir has sung Ani Ma’ Amin in honor of Yom Kippur, and Sarah Bareilles’ King of Anything and Lady Gaga’s Born this Way. With Jenny Crane as Children’s Choir Director and Susan Easterly as our accompanist for the Children’s and Youth Choirs we introduce choral singing for the very young with songs like We Are a Circle and Room at the Table .
Among our special ministries is our Healing Choir which sings to those who are seriously ill and in need of spiritual support. We present a fantastic concert series of six performances featuring some of the area’s finest musicians. In January 2020, our Cedar Lane Benefit Concert will celebrate its 10th anniversary of featuring our Choir, accompanist Dr. Jasmin Lee, and guest musicians in a sterling concert to support the work of a local charity. I’m very proud of the more than $50,000 that the concert has raised on behalf of local charities. During July, we invite anyone who wishes to sing in our Summer Singers' Choir. We have a host of Cedar Lane guest musicians who infuse our Sunday services with excellence, variety, and relevance. One of my special delights is singing with our three Choir section leaders; Jenny Lynn Moyer, Rachel Moore and Kevin Miller, as the Vocal Quartet. We sing for services and special events and they make great music (and make me sound good enough)!
Come, worship with us sometime. You'll be impressed! Then, let me know who in your family would like to join one of our ensembles. We'll take it from there. Cedar Lane’s Music Ministry supports significant UU themes, provides uplifting and enhancing worship experiences and empowers our members to spread the good news that is Cedar Lane.