As you can see, my office has not yet recovered from slow-moving Tropical Storm Joyce. By the end of August I had been swamped with sample music, demo CDs, reams of paper related somehow to worship planning, and a lot of cracker crumbs and coffee spills. If I thought FEMA would get here anytime soon, I would send out a plea for help, but I think I'm on my own for clean-up.
Since the choir doesn't meet in the summer, some folks wonder what I do with my time. Here's a little run down:
First off, I worked with 2 different organists, 3 pianists, 2 trumpeters, and 3 violinists in rotation for our musical team for the hymns. I also scheduled various soloists and ensembles for 14 weeks worth of music, using a total of 33 volunteers, ranging in age from 12 to 92. I made sure sound checks and rehearsals occurred for these people, found accompanists for some, music for others, and made something like 2 million phone calls. Well, that might be a slight exaggeration, but it seemed liked 2 million! I also:
1.Created a list of accompanists which can be handed out to all the volunteers when they agree to sing. It includes instructions about sound checks, etc.
2. Listened to many promotional CDs of choral anthems and chose a few to order for the expansion of our music library.
3. Used the full year’s worth of sermon topics Pastor Randy gave me to work with, and selected all the music for the coming year. This involves looking up all the Scripture texts that he has chosen to base the sermons on, thinking about how best to support the theme he is using, and searching through the music library for appropriate pieces.
3. Attended weekly staff meetings, monthly music board meetings, monthly worship planning meetings.
4. Prepared at length for, and met with an individual who was upset about some music related issues
5. Kept board members apprised of various things via e-mail.
6. Spent much time on the phone, with the goal of recruiting some new instrumentalists for the worship team
7. Worked on all the details of the Huntley Brown event.
8. Rehearsed the instrumentalists on the hymns every Wednesday morning .
9. Did conducting preparation for the fall anthems.
10. Made sure that the worship order was forwarded to Jenny Noble each week so that the songs could be typed into the software correctly.
11. Proofed the bulletin weekly, and pushed to have it remain unchanged after Wednesday.
13. Wrote and sent out the recruiting letter and article for the newsletter and bulletin insert.
14. Developed the calendar for the upcoming year.
I also used the two vacation Sundays I had left from last fiscal year, and took two from this fiscal year.
Some years ago we didn't have a music director in the summer. The growth of the church has just made that old way of operating impossible. I find that August, in particular, is very heavy with preparation for the coming choir season. I think the church has been wise in recognizing the need to staff the position in the summer, not just because I have a job then, but because we get such a strong start to the fall this way.