With two more Sacred Song Services left in this summer’s season, Josh Stafford, director of sacred music and Jared Jacobsen Chair for the Organist, is looking to keep things fresh while still celebrating choral music.
In the tune of celebrating, some of the first music Chautauquans will hear to kick off Week Nine, which is a collaboration with the Smithsonian Folklife Festival and spotlights folk music and culture, will be at the Sacred Song Service, “A Tapestry for the Future,” at 8 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 21 in the Amphitheater.
Some hymns included are “Precious Lord, Take My Hand,” by Thomas Dorsey, and “Earth and All Stars,” by David N. Johnson.
“This week’s service, ‘A Tapestry in Song,’ is a celebration of many beloved hymn tunes and choral anthems based on hymn tunes and spirituals, and a touch of Leonard Bernstein for good measure,” Stafford said.
And in the tune of keeping things fresh, Chautauqua’s Week Nine chaplain-in-residence will be participating in the service.
“We’re particularly delighted to welcome Bishop Yvette Flunder, our Week Nine preacher, as soloist,” Stafford said.
Stafford said the music of the Sacred Song Services is classic, but timeless.
“There are poems and readings reflecting on the experience of hymnody and music, and some charming, if slightly old-fashioned, directives on hymn singing from John Wesley, Robert Bridges, and Isaac Watts,” Stafford said.