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Worshiping with Instruments: Music for Lent and Easter

We are fond of quoting Psalm 150. All those instruments —trumpet, harp and lyre, flute and strings, even tambourine and cymbals—paint a sound-picture of orchestral dimensions in Old Testament worship.

Unfortunately the way in which we "make a joyful noise" in our own churches often bears little resemblance to that sound picture from the Psalms. Perhaps that's because incorporating the use of instruments into our liturgy takes a bit of "doing." And "doing" it well requires acquainting ourselves with repertoire, carefully planning liturgy, and rehearsing. In other words, worshiping with musical instruments demands lots of extra time from worship leaders and church musicians.

But, as many churches have discovered, such time is well spent: instruments can effectively deepen and broaden the communicative power of music. It's not impossible, for example, to celebrate Easter without trumpets. But we celebrate more fully with them. Trumpets ringing out triumphantly stir the whole person. They remind us that our whole selves—not only our souls but also our bodies (with real hands that play instruments), not only our intelligence and will but also our senses and aesthetic perception—will participate in Christ's resurrection. Instruments touch our emotions, giving a new depth of feeling to our worship. Imagine how a gong tolling during a Maundy Thursday or Good Friday Tenebrae service might deepen the somberness of Lent, reminding us of the inexorable march of foreordained events leading to Christ's sacrifice. Or think of the poignancy a cello might contribute to a choral presentation of "Ah, Dearest Jesus." Consider the brilliance that a trumpet descant adds to a triumphant hymn or the magnificent full sound of choir, congregation, instruments, and organ uniting in a hymn concertato. Instruments help express the content of liturgy—giving it deeper sound and feeling. They also provide another opportunity for using members' gifts—not to showcase the members but to enhance the corporate worship of the community of believers.

Planning with Care

Ensuring that the use of musical instruments will truly enhance the liturgy requires careful attention to practical details. Knowledge, communication, planning, and rehearsal are essential.

The initiator may be the organist, choir director, minister, member of the liturgy committee, or any other person involved in planning a service. This person should be acquainted with the repertoire of music that involves instruments appropriate for worship and with the names and abilities of instrumentalists in the congregation. He or she should be willing to communicate openly with others involved in planning the service so that the music selected fits meaningfully into the liturgy as a whole.

Where should music be placed in the liturgy? Wherever it enhances and carries forward the flow of the liturgy. In other words, the liturgy should not include "special music"—a label that makes the presentation a performance, focusing on the players. Instead music should flow with and give new depth to the liturgy.

The music for instruments and key-hymns to the congregation. Music for instruments and solo or choral voices can be placed wherever the text and mood of the music enhance the content of the service.

Once the piece is selected and its placement in the service determined, the instrumentalists must be contacted—preferably weeks in advance. It is a rare accident for a piece to turn out well with only a few days' notice and a last-minute rehearsal. The parts should be delivered to the musicians well before the first rehearsal—with tempo, bowing or articulation, breathing points, and other details already marked in. It is helpful to have an early run-through of the piece with all musicians involved to set tempo and phrasing; the instrumentalists can then continue their private practice with these details in mind. At least two rehearsals with all the musicians involved should be scheduled during the two weeks before the service. It might be helpful here to note an idio-syncracy of many choirs: in their first rehearsal with instruments, the singers often pay such interested attention tion to the instrumental contribution that they neglect their own singing! So it makes sense to have the instrumentalists play their part through once or twice without any singing to acquaint the choir with the instrumental parts and to satisfy the singers' curiosity.

How shall such music be announced? Titles can be put into the service outline in the bulletin. Other information about the piece, especially textual associations, can also be included, perhaps in the announcements section. If a piece is based on a song that appears in the congregational hymnal, that information should be noted so that worshipers can refer to the text. Texts that do not appear in the hymnal should be printed in the bulletin.

The names of musicians should be included too—either at the end of the order of worship or in the announcements section. Announcing names from the pulpit or printing names in the body of the liturgy would again call attention to "performance" and to individuals rather than to the content of the liturgy and the community of worshiping believers.

On the following two pages is a bibliography of some excellent "use-tested" music, including compositions for instruments and keyboard, selections for instruments and voices, and hymn concertatos. Generally the music recommended is comfortable for senior high school students, college students, and adults. It is music specifically appropriate for Reformed worship in Lent and on Easter.

Instruments can effectively deepen and broaden the communicative power of music.

Karen A. DeMol is chairman of the music department at Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa.



MUSIC FOR LENT AND EASTER
Tune:CHRIST 1ST ERSTANDEN
Title:Christ the Lord is Risen Again, Christ the Lord Ascends to Reign
Publication: Christ Has Risen, Hanssler, 11.104—$5.20, parts ea. $.90, Alto and tenor recorder, string quartet
Composer: KuKcK

Tune: CHRIST 1ST ERSTANDEN
Title: Christ the Lord is Risen Again, Christ the Lord Ascends to Reign
Publication: Resurrection Suite, Flammer, HF5014—$3.73, Scored for organ alone
Composer: Alec Wyton    
Notes: Effective with a bass clef instrument (cello, bassoon, trombone) playing the hymn tune. Three movements.











Tune: DEO GRACIAS (AGINCOURT)
Title: O Love, How Deep, How Broad, How High
Publication: Wedding Music Book II, Augsburg, 11-9524—$6.75 trumpet and organ
Composer: David Johnson
Notes: Contemporary polyphonic style.





Tune: EASTER HYMN (LYRA DAVIDICA)
Title: Christ the Lord Is Risen Today
Publication: Christ the Lord Is Risen Today, Hope, 900—$1.95, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, and organ
Composer: Austin Lovelance
Notes: Introduction for organ, three "verses" with the traditional harmonization for alternating brass and organ, a fourth verse with florid organ accompaniment, and a short Amen. Easy.





Tune: EASTER HYMN (LYRA DAVIDICA)
Title: Christ the Lord Is Risen Today
Publication: Easter Music, Vol. 1, Augsburg, 11-9111—$6.00, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, tuba, and organ       
Composer: David Johnson


Tune: EASTER HYMN (LYRA DAVIDICA)
Title: Christ the Lord Is Risen Today
Publication: Jesus Christ Is Risen Today, Concordia, 97-5936—$5.00, 2 trumpets and organ
Composer: Raymond H. Haan
Notes: Fantasy.





Tune: GAUDEAMUS PARITER  (AVE VIRGO)
Title: Come, Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain
Publication: Easter Music, Vol. II, Augsburg, 11-9112—$4.00, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, tuba, and organ
Composer: David Johnson    




Tune: GAUDEAMUS PARITER  (AVE VIRGO)
Title: Come, Ye Faithful, Raise the Strain
Publication: Three Hymns of Praise for Eastertide, Concordia, 97-5432—$4.25, 2  trumpets, 2 trombones, and organ 
Composer: S.Drummond Wolff
Notes: Largely traditional harmonization for alternating and combining organ and brass.





Tune: HERZLICH TUT (PASSION CHORALE)
Title: O Sacred Head, Now Wounded
Publication: Christ Doth End in Triumph in Four Festive Ensembles Series, Belwin, GB00122—$4.95, 3  trumpets, organ
Composer: J.S. Bach, ed. Campbell-Watson
Notes: Easy brass parts, consisting of the chorale harmonization; florid organ accompaniment.





Tune: LLANFAIR
Title: Hail the Day That Sees Him Rise
Publication: Three Hymns of Praise for Eastertide, Concordia 97-5432—$4.25, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, and organ      
Composer: S. Drummond Wolff
Notes: Largely traditional harmonization for alternating and combining organ and brass.



Tune: O FILII ET FILIAE
Title: O Sons and Daughters of the King, Ye Sons and Daughters of the King
Publication: Fantasy on "O Sons and Daughters", Augsburg, 11-9164—$3.95, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, organ
Composer: Walter Pelz
Notes: Challenging and lengthy piece built through the development of fragments of the tune. Difficult.





Tune: O FILII ET FILIAE
Title: O Sons and Daughters of the King, Ye Sons and Daughters of the King
Publication: Resurrection Suite, Flammer, HF 5014—$3.75, Scored for organ alone
Composer: Alec Wyton
Notes: Effective with a bass clef instrument (cello, bassoon, trombone) playing the hymn tune.    





Tune: O FILII ET FILIAE
Title: O Sons and Daughters of the King, Ye Sons and Daughters of the King
Publication: Variations cm "OJUii el Filiae", Concordia, 97 5854—$5.50, 2 trumpets and organ
Composer: Raymond H. Haan
Notes: Seven variations.





Tune: ST. THEODULPH
Title: All Glory, Laud, and Honor
Publication: 5 Chorale Preludes for Organ and Two Instruments, Vol. 1, Concordia, 97-5472—$7.25, 2 treble instruments and keyboard
Composer: Donald Busarow
Notes: Moderately contemporary settings in which one instrument always carries the unaltered hymn tune. Remarkably useful for the varying resources of the congregation in that the instrumental parts are printed for both C and for B-Hat instruments, allowing them to be played by various combinations of flute, oboe, recorder, clarinet, trumpet, violin; the keyboard part, having no pedal, can be played by piano or organ.



Tune: VICTORY
Title: The Strife Is O'er, the Battle Done
Publication: Easter Music, Vol. I. Augsburg, 11-9111—$6.00, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, tuba, and organ
Composer: David Johnson
Notes: Challenging and lengthy piece built through the development of fragments of the tune. Difficult.





Tune: VICTORY
Title: The Strife Is O'er, the Battle Done
Publication: Fanfare for Easter, Flammer, LD 5000-$6.50, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, organ
Composer: Robert Elmore
Notes: Difficult   





Tune: VRUCHTEN
Title: This Joyful Eastertide
Publication: 5 Chorale Preludes for Organ and Two InstrumenLs, Vol. II, Concordia, 97-5569—$8.00, 2 treble instruments and keyboard
Composer: Donald Busarow
Notes: (see description under ST. THEODULPH)





Tune: VRUCHTEN
Title: This Joyful Eastertide
Publication: 5 Resurrection Suite, Flammer, HF 5014—$3.75, Scored for organ alone
Composer: Alec Wyton
Notes: Effective with a bass clef instrument (cello, bassoon, trombone) playing the hymn tune. Three movements.





Tune: VRUCHTEN
TitleT: his Joyful Eastertide
Publication: Three Hymns of Praise for Eastertide, Concordia, 97-5432—$4.25, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, and organ        
Composer: S. Drummond Wolff
Notes: Largely traditional harmonization for alternating and combining organ and brass.





Tune: AUF, AUF, MEIN HERZ
Publication: Awake, My Heart, with Gladness from, Three Easter Chorales, Concordia, 98-2116—$.40, SATB choir, 2 descanting instruments in C, optional keyboard      
Compose: rJohann Cruger



Tune: CRUCIFER
Title: Lift High the Cross, Concordia, 97-2468—$.65 SATB, 97-5548—$4.40 score, 97-5549—$6.50 instruments, SATB choir, congregation, organ, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones, timpani
Composer: Carl Schalk



Tune: DUKE STREET
Title: I Know ThaT My Redeemer Lives, Concordia, 97-1462—$.40 SATB    97-4434—$3.50 score, 97-4440—$.75 trumpet, SATB choir, congregation, organ, 1 trumpet
Composer: Paul Bunjus



Tune: EASTER HYMN (MORGEN)
Publication: 5 Easter Procession: Jesus Christ Is Risen Today, Augsburg, 11-1768—$.45, SATB choir, congregation, organ, 3 trumpets
Composer: Paul Fetler



Tune: EASTER HYMN (MORGEN)
Publication: 5 Easter Procession: Jesus Christ Is Risen Today, Augsburg, 11-1769—$.45, SATB choir, 3 trumpets, organ, congregation                   
Composer: Paul Fetler



Tune: EASTER HYMN (MORGEN)
Publication: 5 Easter Procession: Jesus Christ Is Risen Today, GIA, G-2455—$.90, SATB choir, congregation, organ, 2  trumpets, 2 trombones       
Composer: Powell



Tune: EASTER HYMN (MORGEN)
Publication: Easter Procession: Jesus Christ Is Risen Today, Concordia, 98-2050—$.60 SATB choir, congregation, organ, 2  trumpets
Composer: S. Drummond Wolf

Tune: ERSCHIENEN 1ST DER HERRLICH TAG
Publication: That Easter Day with Joy Was Bright from Three Easter Chorales        Concordia, 98-2116—$.40, SATB choir, 2 descanting instruments in C, optional keyboard     
Composer: Johann Paul Fetler



Tune: GELOBT SEI GOTT
Publication: Easter Hymn: Good Christian Men, Rejoice and Sing, Augsburg, 11-1769—$.45, SATB choir, congregations, organ, 3  trumpets     
Composer: Powell 

Tune: HERZLIEBSTER JESU
Title: Ah, Holy Jesus, Augsburg, 11-0302—$.65, SA voices, cello.
Composer: S. Drummond Wolf

Tune: JESUS, MEINE ZUVERSICHT
Title: Jesus Christ, My Sure Defense from Three Easter Chorales, Concordia, 98-2116—$.40, SATB choir, 2 descanting instruments in C, optional keyboard
Composer: Johann Cruger  

Tune: LLANFAIR
Publication: GIA, G-1731—$.70, SATB choir, 2 trumpets, organ, congregation
Composer: Noel Geomanne
Note: Includes texts for "Christ the Lord Is Risen Today" (Easter) and "Hail the Day that Sees Him Rise" (Ascension Day)


Tune: PASSION CHORALE
Publication: 0 Sacred Head Now Wounded, Agape, AG 7149—$.35, SATB choir, woodwinds (2 flutes and 2 oboes) or organ                   
Composer: G. Alan Smith arr.

Tune: PASSION CHORALE
Publication: Hymns and Descants for the Psalter Hvmnal, Vol. I-IV—$3.00 ea.       Available from Dordt College, Sioux Center, IA 51250, SATB choir, congregation, organ       
Composer: Dale Grotenhuis

Tune: ST. DENIO
Publication: We Welcome Glad Easter, Fred Bock, BGO 365—$.40, 2-part chorus (SA, mixed, or TB), 2 trumpets
Composer: John A. Richardson


TuneST. MAGNUS
Publication: The Head That Once Was Crowned with Thorns  GIA, G-2235—$.70, SATB choir, congregation, organ     
Composer: Carl Schalk 

Tune: ST. THEODULPH
Title: All Glory, Laud and Honor, Concordia, 97-4513—$5.25 SATB     97-4514—$.50 Trumpet, Junior or SATB choir, congregation,              trumpet 
Composer: Paul Bunjes

Tune: VRUCHTEN
Title: This Joyful Eastertide, Belwin-Mills, GCMR-2970—$.75, SATB choir, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones
Composer: Alec Wyton  

Tune: VRUCHTEN
Publication: This Joyful Eastertide, CRC Publications, 243700—$5.95 score and parts with permission to photocopy parts congregation and/or choir, organ, strings  (Vln I & II, Via, Vc)
Composer: David Holmbo

Tune: WINCHESTER NEW
Publication: Ride On, Ride On in Majesty, Concordia, 98-2528—$60 SATB         98-2529—$3.75 Brass, SATB choir, congregation, organ, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones             
Composer: Carl Schalk

Tune: WINCHESTER NEW
Publication: SATB Choir Settings from thePsalter Hymnal Vol. I-IV—$3.00ea. Available from Dordt College Sioux Center, IA 51235, SATB choir, congregation, organ     
Composer: Dale Grotenhuis