Music Making

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. We regularly use musical settings of the liturgy from Evangelical Lutheran Worship, All Creation Sings and Of the Land and Seasons.

Join us for an Evening of American Music
Sunday, October 1, 2023 at 7 pm
You can also watch the concert on our YouTube channel.

Featuring recently composed music by John Weaver and William David Cooper based on 19th-Century American hymns:

  • “Three American Folk-Hymn Settings” (2009) for viola (Joan Ellersick) and organ (Tom Berryman) by John Weaver
  • “Two Chorale Preludes” (2022) for violin (Jiyu Oh) and piano (Will Cooper) by William David Cooper
  • “Rhapsody” for flute (Anne Weaver) and organ (Tom Berryman) by John Weaver
  • “Three Chorale Preludes” for viola (Joan Ellersick) and piano (Tom Berryman) by William David Cooper

I hear the music ringing is open to the public at no charge.  Donations will be welcomed to support the East Boston Community Soup Kitchen at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church.

Donations received at our October 1 musical evening will benefit the East Boston Community Soup Kitchen at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church.  Located in the heart of East Boston’s Maverick Square, the East Boston Community Soup Kitchen is the go-to place for those who are hungry for nourishment and community.  On Monday’s the soup kitchen distributes hundreds of bags of groceries and fresh produce and on Tuesday’s provides hot meals and social services for the homeless.   Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church was founded in 1911 by Norwegian immigrants to serve as a Seamen’s Mission. The church has historically (and to this day) served refugees and immigrants, providing a place of refuge and welcome.

William David Cooper is a composer, conductor and organist based in Boston, MA. His opera Hagar and Ishmael has been featured by Fort Worth Opera, West Edge Opera, and the National Opera Association, and has been praised by the San Francisco Chronicle for its “richly soaring vocal lines.” His St. Luke Passion and Requiem were recently commissioned by St. Peter’s Church, NYC, and his choral music has also been performed by The New York Virtuoso Singers, and C4. He is the recipient of a Charles Ives Scholarship from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, two ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Awards, including the Leo Kaplan Prize, and the American Prize. He has received fellowships from the Aspen Music Festival, the Composers Conference, Brush Creek, I-Park, Ucross and VCCA. His chamber music has been featured on several recently released recordings, including Mirrors (Lysander Trio, First Hand Records, 2021) and Nong (gamin, Innova Records, 2020). An alumnus of UC Davis and the Juilliard School, Cooper serves on the faculty of the Walnut Hill School for the Arts, and as Music Director at Wellesley Hills Congregational Church.

John Weaver (1937 – 2021), a native of Mauch Chunk, PA, received his early training at the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore and graduated from Philadelphia’s Curtis Institute of Music.  He served for decades as the head of the organ departments of both the Curtis Institute and the Julliard School in New York, while concertizing across the Americas and Europe.  A consummate church musician, he served as organist and choir director at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Manhattan where, with his flutist wife Marianne, he established the acclaimed Bach Cantata Vespers series; from 1970-2005, he was Minister of Music at the Madison Avenue Presbyterian Church, where he also directed the St. Andrew’s Chorale.  He was a prolific composer of choral and organ music, as well as liturgical music and hymn settings.

Jiyu Oh is a violinist from Seoul, South Korea. She is currently studying with Prof. Soovin Kim at the New England Conservatory Preparatory School and Walnut Hill School for the Arts in Boston, MA. She is also enrolled in the Chamber Music Intensive Performance Seminar and Youth Philharmonic Orchestra of NEC Preparatory School. Having won first prize at numerous national competitions, Her most recent highlights include debut recital at the Kumho Art Hall as Kumho Prodigy Artist, full scholarship participation at the Chamber Music Northwest Young Artist Institute and Morningside Music Bridge and 2nd place in the NEC Preparatory School Concerto Competition, . Some of her previous performances are “A Night at the Museum” performance held at the Calderwood Hall located in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Seoul Chamber Virtuosi Concert, Music for Food Concert at the Goethe Institut, “Back to Bach” virtual concert and a commissioned piece at the Learning Courage virtual concert “Hope”.

Joan Ellersick, viola, studied at Indiana University with Georges Janzer and received her Bachelor in Viola Performance from Boston University, where she worked with Bernard Kadinoff.  After graduating from BU, Joan served as assistant principal viola and personnel manager of the Grand Rapids, MI Symphony, also playing frequently with the Detroit Symphony and teaching viola at Calvin College.  

Since returning to her native Boston, she has appeared with many local ensembles, including Emmanuel Music, Cantata Singers, Chamber Orchestra of Boston, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Ballet, Opera Boston and Odyssey Opera.

Joan coaches the viola sections and teaches lessons for Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras; she taught for many years at St Marks and Fay Schools in Southboro, MA.

Anne Weaver began her flute studies through the Peabody Conservatory in Baltimore, where she grew up, then studied with Elinor Preble at Wellesley College.  She taught flute for many years in the schools and colleges of the Pioneer Valley, from Brattleboro to South Hadley, earning a Masters degree along the way.  She also served as choir director at the Immanuel Lutheran Church in Amherst for 35 years.  At age 48 she entered medical school and no longer had time for the flute.  She is grateful to Tom Berryman for encouraging her to try fluting again when she and her husband moved to Needham and joined the Christ Lutheran Church choir in 2017.

Tom Berryman is Music Director at Christ Lutheran Church, Natick and previously served as Music Director for St. Mark’s School, Southborough, where he held the Evill-Glavin Teaching Chair.  A graduate of Susquehanna University (AB in Organ Performance) and the University of South Florida (MM in choral conducting), he has developed and directed music programs for schools and churches in Pennsylvania, Hawaii, Florida and Massachusetts. Tom studied organ with James Boeringer, Claire Coci and Barry Wood.


The CLC Choir leads the music for worship on Sundays at 10:00 am and rehearses on Thursday evenings 7:30 to 9 pm, September through May. There is no audition, and while previous singing experience is helpful, it is not required for membership. Optional sessions in vocal training and sight reading are offered each week before the regular rehearsals. Contact Tom Berryman for information about the CLC Choir.


The World Band is an ad-hoc, intergenerational ensemble that was 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!

Our two CLC Handbell Choirs perform regularly for Sunday worship and special events. One rehearses Wednesday evenings, the other Saturday afternoons. We 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.


Silent Movies

Imagine, a double feature for Silent Movie Night on Saturday, November 18 at 7 pm in the parish hall!  Pianist, Rob Humphreville brings his brilliant improvisations for two short films from the golden age:  Charlie Chaplin’s A Dog’s Life and Buster Keaton’s Sherlock, Jr.

A Dog’s Life premiered in 1918 with Chaplin starring as the Little Tramp with his adopted dog, trying to make a life for themselves in the city.  Buster Keaton and Kathryn McGuire star in Keaton’s 1924 film, Sherlock, Jr.  Keaton, playing a movie projectionist becomes a detective in order to clear himself after being accused of thievery.

Our silent movie night is 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.

Rob Humphreville is a freelance pianist and organist. For the past thirty-five years, he has accompanied silent movies on piano and organ all over New England, and the Boston Globe has praised him for his inventive improvisations. A composer of independent film scores, he has also been active in the music programs of Brooks School in North Andover; Buckingham, Browne & Nichols School in Cambridge; Bethany Convent in Arlington; the Apollo Club in Boston; the Society of St. John the Evangelist monastery in Cambridge; and Temple Isaiah in Lexington. He graduated from Harvard College in 1980 and splits his time between New London, CT, and Cambridge.

The Organ

The Christ Lutheran Chuch 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.



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.

Of the Land and Seasons

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.