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The Magical Music of the Holidays

Thanks to the miracle of technology, I’m writing to you from the 31st Annual Clayton Holiday Concerts. Greetings from the dressing area below the Knoxville Civic Auditorium! I’m halfway through a series of 4 shows and getting my fill of Christmas carols (see last month’s post if you want to know why that makes me giddy). This coming week, I’ll be leading and participating in rehearsals leading up to Christmas Eve, performing at two Solstice services, and singing in four Christmas Eve services. The month of December is crunch time for musicians of all types. Choirs sing, instrumentalists play, drummers drum (and pipers pipe), and music is made everywhere from malls to airports to churches to here at the Civic Auditorium.

As avid music lovers, sometimes we forget that each time we hear a song performed, the musicians we’re hearing have rehearsed… and rehearsed… and rehearsed. They’ve taken time away from their families and friends to hone and share their talent with the wider world. I saw a great Facebook meme this week where an adult asks a child how the Christmas season is going… and the child responds tearfully, “My parents are musicians.”

So, in a spirit of deep gratitude, I invite you to thank a musician today. Our choir at Westside has prepared for three services this December instead of just one. Each choir member has had more than 10 pieces of music in their hands this month. Personally, I want to thank each of them for their hard work and dedication to quickly learning so much music. In the midst of a very busy season myself, I can commiserate on the value of their time and energy.

I also urge you to be mindful when listening to music around you this holiday season. Take time to fully engage with the performers. Consider the time and energy they’ve taken to prepare for the performance. Try to feel the spirit of the music - how does it speak to you? Whether sharing the journey from darkness to light or celebrating a newborn king, music helps us to connect with the joy and meaning of the holidays.

As always, I encourage you to make music of your own! Want to join our choir or provide instrumental music in the new year? Please contact me:

Make a joyful noise! Anne

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