Choirs for three year olds through 12th graders are directed by Stephanie McIlwain Miller.
See “New Parent Information” link below for more detailed information about these choirs.
PLEASE NOTE: Joyful Noises rehearsals now begin at 11:15. The elementary choristers (2nd – 5th grade) and the youth ensemble (6th – 12th grade) will be experimenting with rehearsing together and apart during this quarter. Elementary members will finish at 12:00 with the youth continuing until a little after 12:30 for more advanced learning.
Joyful Noises (2nd grade and up): After a very busy Holiday season we took a week off for Christmas break. We weren’t gone long, however. On Epiphany Sunday, January 6, the Joyful Noises’ rendition of Set the Sun Dancing! by Kemp/Murray reminded us that through scripture we have seen Epiphany wrapped in a shawl — an image that brings out strong love in many of our hearts –and now we are blessed to hold the light and spread the Good News that God’s love, expressed through Jesus, is for all people.
On Sunday, February 3 two of our alumae (Laura M. and Sarah P.) joined us as we led worship with a partner-song by Mark Burrows combining the traditional Swahili “Bwana Asifiwe” with the hymn “Praise to the Lord, the Almighty.” Ardis T. and Zoe T. began the piece with a lovely duet, before we kicked into dance mode with perscussion provided by Gin B. (shaker), Kevin J. (conga), and Kathleen T. (djembe). As is our tradition each first Sundays of the month, we led the congregation in the sung responses to the Great Thanksgiving.
Our next Sunday to lead worship is Transfiguration Sunday, March 3. Our song gently focuses on our prayer that the Light of Christ may change our lives and bring us ever closer to God’s will for us as we praise, honor, and adore the Light of Light: “Laudamus te. Benedicimus te. Adoramus te.” Composed by Nancy Gifford.
I won’t spoil the surprise yet, but I can tell you there is going to be an Ash Wednesday service on March 6 that is designed to be meaningful and participatory in ways that encourage all ages to worship (and maybe learn a little along the way) together. The Joyful Noises Youth Ensemble will be singing, hopefully chiming, and helping lead in other ways this powerful service.
Angel Choir (3yrs-1st grade): The Angel Choir has had a great time singing songs that help us learn each others names, praise God, move our bodies, and sing together as a group.
Joyful Noises: Different songs speak to different people. The Joyful Noises sing for the glory of God and to help create “thin places” through which the congregation might encounter God in worship. Therefore, each chorister works to sing every song as if it is their personal favorite.
This year we will be helping each chorister set goals for what skills they, as an individual, are ready to build upon in addition to working toward our group goals. The youth have been invited to sign up for times to meet with Kevin and Stephanie prior to worship so we can help them figure out where they are musically, what they would like to work toward, and how they can help themselves get there.
These young people are full of joy and energy as they offer their voices in a ministry that touches everyone in the congregation. They are learning that they each have something of value to offer, that they are a vital part of our community, and that they are leaders in worship. -Lynne Lew, member of LWUMC
Angel Choir: The Angel Choir is finding many different ways to move to music, play rhythm instruments, and sing in unison. They can echo their director and each other with their speaking, whisper, shouting, and singing voices. We continue to practice listening when someone else is speaking, following directions, and taking turns.
Joyful Noises: In December the Joyful Noises had a wonderful time singing for and with the residents of Madison House Retirement Center. They also enjoyed talking about Christmas traditions past and present with the residents. Their joy was definitely reciprocated. They will be returning on the second Saturday in May.
In the meantime Stephanie and Kevin continue to go on the second and fourth Saturdays of the month at 2:00 for a resident led hymnsing. We estimate that 50-60 residents are served throughout the year, with weekly attendance in the mid-teens to mid-twenties. When the Joyful Noise come the number goes way up!
Angel Choir: Developmentally, we are working to share instruments and other materials with each other, taking turns, and sharing our singing voices in the classroom. There will be another opportunity this spring to share our voices as a group in worship for those who feel ready to try that. We may even get to chime the hour during Lent. We’ll see!
Stuff You Need to Know or Fill Out:
- Joyful Noises Calendar and Basic Information
- Angel Choir Calendar
- Learn about Instrumental Music Opportunities
- New Parent Information
- Angel Choir Registration Form
- Joyful Noises Registration Form
- Emergency Information Form
- Driver Registration Form
- Choir Photo Release
- Joyful Noises Music Folder Agreement
- Please download, print, complete, and return forms to Stephanie.