Sunday, August 14, 2011

Choir "practice" or "Music Theory" class ?

I won't be going into ALL the details (mostly because I don't know really ANY of the details) but our Choir Director at church was recently released from her calling and replaced with another person.  For non-Mormon readers, this is something that happens periodically.  We members of the church receive "callings" to serve in various roles to support the ward (congregation).  We don't have paid clergy in our church so everything that occurs related to Sunday (and any other day of the week) meetings is done by volunteers.

What is not necessarily typical, is for someone to be "released" from their calling out of the blue.  It is not that you always know when you're about to be released and perhaps receive a different calling, but generally there are more "normal" times when that happens.  Like when you move away.  Or if you've done the same calling for several years.  Or you are needed in another calling that is perfectly suited to you.

My current calling is a dual responsibility.  I am one of three teachers of our 11 and 12 year old Primary Class.  I am also the 11-year old Boy Scout Leader for our ward.  I've been doing this for a little over a year now and it makes sense that I be in this calling for at least a little while longer because my oldest son is currently that age.  It would not surprise me at all if I were to be "released" in the next 6 months or so, after my son moves to the next group of scouts.  I'd also not be surprised if my new calling after that were in Young Men's (that's the group of 12 to 18 year old boys) as a leader of some sort.  I'll be fine with whatever happens, but you can see where I'm going with the whole logical side of things.

Anyway, this "release" of our (now former) choir director came at a very illogical time ... but that's not really the point of my blog.  All I really wanted to say was that this new director doesn't seem to follow the same beat (no pun intended!)  And that's fine!  For him ... and for anyone who likes the way he is going to change things.

I'm not entirely sure I am going to.

And so I might choose to stop going, but not until after I give it at least 2-3 weeks to see if I can still enjoy it.  The main difference is that with the former director, we sang most of the time we were at practices.  With the new director, we seem to just be instructed ABOUT music most of the time.  I am at a point in my life where I really don't care to learn LOTS of new information about music theory.  I'd really rather just enjoy singing and focus on making the sound better, not my knowledge of what it should sound like or what the composer was thinking when she wrote the piece, etc.

We'll just have to see ... but I can tell you that I have stopped attending choir in previous wards because the director took the fun out of it.  I really hope that doesn't happen ... but I fear it already may have.  :(



  1. I can see where you are coming from. I wouldn't mind learning that sort of stuff but that is not why I go to choir. I go because I love to sing and because I love the people that are in the choir.

    Maybe you could suggest to the old leader to have some sort of singing group outside of church. We may do this here, just another place to get together and sing because we love it. And we might do some music from musicals too.

  2. Great post! And as I read it I was reminded of the Music Appreciation class we both took together at Aims. It was fun, interesting, fascinating, but I don't feel that the same methods and practices would have fit in with church choir. There is a difference!