Music Making

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Music… will help dissolve your perplexities and purify your character and sensibilities,
and in time of care and sorrow, will keep a fountain of joy alive in you.

~Dietrich Bonhoeffer

At Christ Lutheran we strive to fill our worship services with vocal, instrumental and congregational music of the highest quality in a diversity of styles.

Comlanvi Agbodjinou playing the new drums from Togo

Drums from Togo

We dedicated a  set of three, handcrafted drums from Togo during our service on April 28, 2024, the Fifth Sunday of Easter.  The drums are a gift from the Agbodjinou family and  were made in Togo by Albert Kougbadja for Christ Lutheran Church.  Watch the video clip of the World Band leading “Christ Has Arisen, Alleluia,” when the drums were  heard for the first time.

Bach Sunday

We commemorate two historically significant composers, J.S. Bach (1685-1750) and Heinrich Schütz (1585-1672) each year in July on Bach Sunday,  offering their music as the basis for our worship service.  The CLC Choir, guest singers and professional players offer cantata excerpts, Psalm settings and instrumental music and lead congregational hymn singing.

Choir

The CLC Choir rehearses Thursday evenings and sings most Sundays September through May, for choral Evening Prayer and for our annual Bach Sunday in July. Weekly rehearsals begin with focused warm-ups, centering on the development of vocal skills and building unity in tone.  Our Choir includes both professional and amateur musicians committed to singing together and to leading music in worship. Some of our singers read music and some learn by listening.  During the 22-23 season, the Choir prepared over thirty-five separate musical works, multiple settings of the liturgy, hymn and Psalm settings. Contact Tom Berryman for information about the CLC Choir.

 

Evening Prayer

Christ Lutheran Church has been hosting choral Evening Prayer services for many years.  Recently, we have begun a collaboration with St. John Lutheran Church in Sudbury, offering two Sunday Evening Prayer services each year.  This year we joined with St. John in November and they joined us in February, singing and praying for peace in our time. 

Access our recording of Thomas Tallis’ “Te lucis ante terminum” (“To you before the close of day’)

Handbells

Lead by Kim Petot, two groups of players form the CLC Handbell Choir, with separate rehearsals on Thursday mornings and Saturday afternoons, performing regularly for Sunday worship.  The Bells also appear in the wider community, including Natick’s PorchFest, nursing homes, in exchanges with other bell choirs and at Christmastime for businesses and our own outdoor Christmas tree lighting.  The Bells use a fine three octave set of Malmark Handbells and a set of Malmark chimes. While music reading familiarity is helpful, emerging musicians are supported and encouraged. High school aged players and older are welcome to join the Handbell Choirs. Please contact Kim Petot with any questions or for more information.

Jazz

A fine professional trio brings a fresh sonority to three Sunday worship services each year through their artful improvisations on the liturgy and hymns and in their performance of some great classics from jazz traditions.

 

Access our recording of “Canticle of the Turning”

Land and Seasons Band

The Land and Seasons Band leads the music for the seasonal Of the Land and Seasons, a liturgy in blue-grass style that we offer for our SeptemberFest, Transfiguration Sunday and SummerFest services.  Even though we are a suburban congregation, Christ Lutheran celebrates and honors the contributions of those who plant, nurture and harvest and those who conserve and preserve the natural resources on which we all depend. 

Access our recording of “O God, whose word well-planted” 

Of the Land and Seasons Liturgy

We regularly include Of the Land and Seasons, a folksong paraphrase setting of the Holy Communion service, three times annually: Winter, Summer and Fall. Even though we are a suburban congregation, Christ Lutheran celebrates and honors the contributions of those who plant, nurture and harvest and those who conserve and preserve the natural resources on which we all depend.

The Organ

The Christ Lutheran Church organ was built by the Johnson and Son Organ Company of Westfield MA in 1874, their Opus 401. The instrument was rebuilt by the Andover Organ Company of Methuen, MA and installed at Christ Lutheran in 1977.

Access our video “The Organ at Christ Lutheran, Natick”

Access our video of Sinfonia from Cantata 29 (J.S. Bach)

 

Silent Movie Night

In the fall we offer Silent Movie Night, offered to all at no charge. Donations are gratefully received for the Metrowest Asylee Family Coalition, a faith-based organization formed in 2021 to accompany asylees by providing support for food, clothing, housing, medical care, legal services, transportation and incidentals.  Coalition congregations include Christ the King Lutheran Church (Holliston) Peace Lutheran Church (Wayland) Christ Lutheran Church (Natick) UU Area Church (Sherborn) Wellesley Village Church and UU Wellesley Hills.

World Band

The World Band is an ad-hoc, intergenerational ensemble, formed to accompany our newer hymns that originated in folk traditions from countries outside of Europe. In the spirit of traditional music-making, we generally do not use sheet music—instrument parts are created during two rehearsals before each service we lead. We tailor the accompaniment to the available musicians and instruments–lead sheets and part cards for guitar and percussion, and the hymnal page for those playing melody, like violin and flute. Contact Gail Weston-Roberts if you’re interested or have questions. At this point, all percussion instruments are supplied by the ensemble director – but if you have your own, by all means bring it!

Access our recording of “Ise Oluwa”