Prelude Blog

Christmas in July: Piano/Organ Repertoire for Advent/Christmas

Posted on Jul 10, 2018 4:19:00 PM by Tim Shaw in review-prelude

I love the holiday season—even though it can be a stressful time—and I love the music that accompanies Advent and Christmas. Every year, I look forward to taking out my collection of seasonal music and playing through it again, and it always feels like spending time with good friends I haven’t seen for a while. It’s July, so you may (or may not!) be in planning mode for the upcoming year—I hope you’ll consider programming some of the following piano and organ repertoire. These are some of my favorite resources, and I find myself turning to them over and over again. Most of these titles are available through Prelude Music Planner. Some are in the public domain and are available (for free!) through the International Music Score Library Project (www.imslp.org).*

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The Augsburg Chorale Book: Five Hundred Years of Singing (and Counting!)

Posted on Jun 10, 2018 4:24:00 PM by Zebulon Highben in Uncategorized

The party’s over. 2017 has come and gone, and with it, the sesquicentennial of Martin Luther and the Reformation. The concerts, lectures, and ecumenical worship celebrations have concluded. The exhibits have come down, and the newly made banners and paraments have been put away. A Mighty Fortress is Our God is taking a well-earned rest.

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Summer Music

Posted on Apr 25, 2018 10:55:41 AM by Anne Krentz Organ in Uncategorized

Do your choirs take a break over the summer months? I know of several churches in which the choirs continue to sing all year round, but more frequently I hear of choirs being “off” for the summer. If this is the case for you, rather than viewing it as a loss, consider it an opportunity to branch out and incorporate a variety of other vocal and instrumental ensembles. Tap the home-grown musical talent in your church and community.

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Choral Music for Holy Week: Sunday of the Passion and the Three Days

Posted on Mar 15, 2018 9:49:23 AM by Jonathan Kohrs in Planning

It goes without saying that Holy Week is one of the busiest times of the church year for choirs and their directors. But along with the high demands of singing for multiple services within the span of six or seven days (let alone the “eighth day” of Easter!) come the great rewards of proclaiming the Gospel through a wide variety of music in the most dramatic liturgies of the church year.

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A "Choral Ecology" in Worship Music Planning

Posted on Feb 27, 2018 5:05:29 PM by John Sall in Choral Techniques and Repertoire, in Planning

Within our congregations and personal lives, we have increasingly clear understanding of the ways our personal decisions around our use of resources matter. How can we carry this sense of stewardship into the planning and care we exhibit for resources of wisdom, people, talent, time, and connection in our worship services? Over recent years I have grown to plan anthems, service music, and other choir roles with a much clearer view of the “ecosystem” volunteer church choirs exist in. Intentional planning with this awareness has helped to provide increased comfort and musical consistency in the growth and leadership of my choirs, it has broadened our choral and congregational repertoire without (much) resistance, and it has helped to deepen theological and liturgical connections in an era of widely varied attendance patterns. Others have articulated well the introduction of new hymns into a congregation’s repertoire, so I will not repeat that process here but focus directly on choral leadership.

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The Lutheran Roots of an Epiphany Vespers

Posted on Jan 18, 2018 9:21:55 AM by Kile Smith in Composing and arranging, in Potpourri

Ten years ago this month, the most important premiere of my life took place. Piffaro, the Renaissance Band commissioned from me a concert-length Vespers.

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Making Biblical Stories Come Alive through Song:  Sing the Stories of Jesus

Posted on Dec 28, 2017 9:30:03 AM by Karol Kinard Kimmell in Music Ministry

One of my favorite collections of songs for children is the book Sing the Stories of Jesus by John Horman and Mary Nelson Keithahn. It is chock-full of songs based on various stories from the Gospels, some well-known stories and some that are often overlooked.  Several songs are simple enough to be used for Sunday School groups, but all are perfect for young singers in choirs.  They cover events of Jesus' life from the angels' Gloria at his birth to Breakfast by the Sea after the resurrection. Instructions for teaching are included for each song as well as an accompaniment CD if you need it. Over time, I have taught and directed many of these songs, but I'd like to share the way I have taught, embellished, and performed four of my favorites from this collection.

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With New Voices—The Small Catechism in Song

Posted on Sep 6, 2017 11:38:26 AM by David Sims in Planning

If you flip to the back of Evangelical Lutheran Worship in search of one of the indices, you might end up taking a quick tour through the Small Catechism first. Nestled between the daily lectionary and the copyright acknowledgments are the words every Lutheran has had to memorize (at least part of!) during confirmation class. Its physical presence in our primary worship book is a reminder that like the heritage of hymns, tunes, and liturgies contained in ELW, we are meant to carry these words with us as we worship, pray, and live faithfully in the world.

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Lightening the Load – A SAB Story

Posted on Aug 23, 2017 2:58:45 PM by Adam Lefever Hughes in Choral Techniques and Repertoire, in Planning

The following post was written as helpful connection between the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians and Prelude. Choral Reading Sessions are a staple feature of ALCM conferences. Adam Hughes offers a helpful review of pieces he encountered this summer with suggestions on how they could be beneficial in your context.

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Choral Music for Fall 2017 (Lectionary Year A)

Posted on Jul 19, 2017 5:10:22 PM by Anne Krentz Organ in Planning

[Editor's note: While the summer sun is still high in the sky and Rally Day and the startup of choral seasons seem as though they are months away, you might want to carve out some time to begin to get organized for fall! Thanks to Anne Krentz Organ for writing these seasonal pointers, helpful whether you're highly organized or running last-minute. Either way, we're here to help with Prelude's ever-growing resources. Blessings to you in your music ministries this summer and into the fall.]

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