We are pleased to announce that the Chancel Choir of First Church has been invited to serve as “choir in residence” at Truro Cathedral in Cornwall, England in August 2017. The tour comes at the invitation of Truro’s Director of Music Christopher Gray. While in Truro, the choir will shoulder the enormous task of singing for the daily services at the Cathedral. These choir residencies are offered to visiting choirs during the summer months, when the Cathedral Choir is on summer break. The First Church choir has never undertaken any sort of tour, much less an overseas one. And, it is indeed a rarity for a Presbyterian choir to receive a personal invitation to an Anglican cathedral. That, in and of itself is a testament to the exacting musical standards we hold here.
To prepare for the trip, the choir is singing several Evensong services at First Church through next summer. These services also allow us to step into another realm of music-making, one that comes out of a choral tradition dating back nearly 400 years.
Following each Evensong, the choir will prepare and host delicious meals for the congregation. These Evensong dinners serve as fundraisers for the Chancel Choir tour and will provide a truly wonderful time of community and fellowship! Come and get to know your choir members!
- Sunday, October 16 @ 4 pm - Evensong, followed by a fall chili feast
- Sunday, November 20 @ 4 pm - Evensong of Thanksgiving, followed by not-your-typical Thanksgiving dinner
- Sunday, June 11 @ 4 pm - Evensong, followed by a Black Tie formal reception
The overall fundraising goal is $50,000, which covers the cost for the choir. The monies being raised toward the fundraising goal covers airfare, transportation, lodging, and entry to various sites being visited. Obviously, the goal is a large one, and we cannot reach our goal simply through Evensong dinners—we are asking for your contributions as well. Perhaps you were moved by a particular piece of music, or your favorite hymn, or would simply like to contribute in honor of or thanksgiving for your favorite chorister. In addition, we are running a CHALLENGE now through Easter Sunday asking for a small commitment of just $10, $15, or $20 per week. With everyone contributing a small amount, we can reach our goal! There is designated giving for Songs Overseas on our website where you can contribute online and easily and securely set up recurring payments. Or checks can be made out to First Presbyterian Church with “Songs Overseas” in the memo line. All donations, regardless of their amount, are taken as equal and sincere tokens of appreciation for the fine music at First Church.
There is also a Companion Tour for any persons interested in joining the choir in England to follow their work, and experience living the “life of a Cathedral Choir.”
We sincerely hope that you will consider helping us reach our goal by contributing as generously as you are able. If you would like more information on how you can help, or if you are interested in coming along as a companion, please speak with Andrew Senn. The Songs Overseas committee members are Judy Callan, Cory Clippinger, Miles Davis, Fran Kraemer, Patti Sassoli, Allan Schimmel, and Andrew Senn.