At St. Barnabas, music weaves into our liturgy from beginning to end. Its melodies change from season to season, so that our music marks liturgical time as do the colors of the vestments and the change from poinsettias to lilies. We sing chants and texts that are centuries old, evoking our connection with the early church, and we accompany these with instrumentation that is modern and global, joining our voice with the Church that encompasses all lands and all people.
Congregational singing helps tell the story of our faith and also gives us a chance to respond to what we have heard and known. The singing is supported by our cantor, choir, and the St. Barnabas Consort, our instrumental ensemble. The choir sings anthems from the rich Anglican choral heritage as well as pieces with uniquely American roots. The consort consists of strings, woodwinds, guitar, piano, pipe organ, percussion, and drums, along with occasional brass, Macedonian tambura, glockenspiel, and Tibetan singing bowl. We call it a “consort” after the 16th century English term for “a group of musicians playing together.” Each of our musicians brings his or her own expertise, creativity, and generous spirit. On the whole, and together, we’re strong in classical, folk, roots and jazz.
With such a rich resource of musicians, our hymns and songs are able to range in style from classical to current, from Gregorian to the Blues, from Bob Dylan to Over The Rhine. Our congregation sings well, and the beautiful natural acoustics of our church help us to join our voices in worship. Our 10:30 service is rich with music: we sing 12 to 13 hymns and songs throughout this service.
Our values as St. Barnabas musicians:
- Supporting the congregation’s worship is paramount.
- Being authentic and sensitively diverse, as we seek to see and serve Christ in each other
- Having frequent a capella singing
- Encouraging as many people to participate as possible
- Drawing out and encouraging musicians’ creativity and abilities
- Drawing from many sources for music selection, including congregation requests
- Using Hymnal 1982 with a fresh approach
- Balancing between traditional and current music
- Inviting feedback and ideas from the congregation
We are always welcoming new choir members and instrumentalists and would be delighted to have you bring your gifts. To learn more about music at St. Barnabas, contact Cathy Kuna, our music director.