A Rich Music Program

You are warmly invited to get involved in music at UUCMC. Our congregation’s volunteers range from experienced professional musicians to newly blooming amateurs. Together, we draw from many musical styles and traditions to build a meaningful musical worship experience.

The UU Singers is a traditional mixed choral ensemble (SATB) that rehearses Thursday evenings from 7 to 8:30 pm. The Singers present classical choral works, spirituals, show tunes, folk music, and pop songs. Our most recent larger endeavors have included Randall Thompson’s “Frostiana,” Mozart’s Regina Coeli K. 108 with soloist and orchestra, and a full production of Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors with the Singers as shepherds. Other repertoire beloved by our group includes Carly Simon’s “Let the River Run,” “The 23rd Psalm” by Bobby McFerrin, “Wanting Memories” by Ysaye Barnwell, as well as choral works by UU composers Jason Shelton and Jim Scott. Please contact Louise to join, visit a rehearsal, or learn more about the ensemble. No audition required.

Just Folk is a closed ensemble directed by David Fischell, performing beloved folk standards, protest songs, and ballads. Accompanied by guitar and occasional banjo, the singers add closely knit harmonies to bring folk favorites to life. The group has presented music by James Taylor, Pete Seeger, John Denver, Peter Paul and Mary, and Peter Mayer. They have further enriched our services by leading congregational singing for folk-style hymns.

UUCMC’s Roots and Wings is our drum choir specializing in West African rhythms. In addition to performing traditional and original compositions/rhythms, the group accompanies hymn singing and provides welcome musical energy ranging from the meditative to the celebratory!  The group also occasionally performs at outside venues. Roots and Wings is led by Skip Leib and rehearses the second and fourth Mondays of each month. Newbies are welcome, even without previous drumming experience. Please contact Skip for details.

Core of Fire is a women’s dance and movement ministry led by Dr. Carol Penn. Dr. Penn (an alumna of Alvin Ailey) uses her background in dance and her knowledge of American Sign Language and Qigong to create joyful and deeply meaningful dances. We are fortunate to enjoy Core of Fire’s performances in services at UUCMC throughout the year. Core of Fire is a closed group, but the ensemble holds workshops for those interested in dance. Please contact Lisa Arcoleo for a schedule of upcoming events.

After a wonderful performance of Benjamin Britten’s Ceremony of Carols in December 2018, the women who sang felt inspired to continue their ensemble, and the new group “Sister Singers” was born. Directed by Elaine Held, Music Director Emerita, the group meets on Saturdays from 3 to 4 pm and occasionally performs in Sunday services. Sister Singers has learned many sorts of music, from hymns, rounds, classical selections, to show tunes. No previous experience is necessary, just a love of singing. Contact Elaine with any questions, and give it a try! It will lift your spirits.

“For UU” is the name of our fledgling ukulele orchestra. Established in spring of 2018, this group of determined musicians–some of whom had never played before–purchased ukuleles and started strumming. We’ve now learned songs by artists from Bob Dylan, to Ben E. King, to the Beatles! The groups meets once or twice per month, on Sundays following services, and performs several times throughout the year. Please contact Louise for a current schedule. Newcomers are welcome.

We also have various ad hoc groups that perform throughout the year: the Chalice Singers (open to children K through 6th grade), our Multigenerational Choir (performing easy unison tunes, part songs, and rounds for singers of all ages), and our Pick up Band (a band/orchestra assembly open to instrumentalists of all levels and ages). These groups rehearse before the service on the morning of performance. Music is available in advance for those who would like it, and each selection is accessible and easy to allow for limited rehearsal. Watch our e-blast, newsletter, and orders of service for announcements about the next opportunity to participate.

UUCMC’s Music Committee does essential work to coordinate our vibrant musical life here at UUCMC. If you would like to participate on the committee, please contact the music chairperson.