Tuesday, March 24, 2009

2009 WLA Spring Choir Concert Date Change


MAY 17, 2009 @ 7:00 PM


I must not have been thinking last spring when I made out the concert schedule for this school year that Memorial Day weekend was about the earliest it could ever be this year. So I put the Spring choir concert in it's normal spot–as late as possible in May, on the Sunday after the senior's last day. It was a couple of weeks ago that a couple of WLA parents caught the conflict with Memorial Day weekend (thank you Sehloffs!) and asked me about it.

With the Vajda Hymn Festival this weekend, I've been working on the program and looked ahead at remaining music dates for this school year, and I saw it again–I did put the Spring choir concert on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend. What was I thinking???

So, to avoid any conflicts with both students and families wanting to get away that weekend, I've decided to move the concert date up one week to Sunday, May 17. The time is still the same (7:00 PM) and the location is too (WLA gym). What's on the program? Among other works that night, the Traveling Choir will be performing the music of Jackson Berkey that they will be singing at their 3rd invitation to sing at Carnegie Hall at 2:00 PM on June 14, 2009.

Jaroslav Vajda Hymn Festival – March 29, 2009

The choirs of Winnebago Lutheran Academy will be presenting a hymn festival on the sacred hymn texts of Jaroslav Vajda at 3:30 and 7:00 PM at Faith Lutheran Church, 55 Prairie Road, Fond du Lac, WI. (map)

Jaroslav Vajda passed from this life to eternal life on May 10, 2008 at the age of 89. His hymn texts, such as "Where Shepherds Lately Knelt" and "Go, My Children, with My Blessing", have become well known in the Wisconsin Synod ever since Christian Worship was published in 1993. With over 225 hymns texts and translations to his credit published in some 60 hymnals on five continents (all written after the age of 50!), Jaroslav Vajda was not only "the dean of hymn writers in North America" but was also a blessing of God to his Church throughout the world.

The following hymns will be performed by the WLA choirs:
  • Christ, Around Your Word Assembled
  • Now the Silence / Then the Glory
  • Where Shepherds Lately Knelt
  • God Has a Plan for All
  • O Dearest Friend / Begin the Song of Glory Now
  • Jesus, Take Us to the Mountain (world premiere)
  • Up Through Endless Ranks of Angels
  • This Child of Ours
  • God of the Sparrow
  • O God, Eternal Father, Lord
  • Giver of Every Perfect Gift
  • Christ Goes Before
  • Go, My Children, with My Blessing
View the program (PDF)

A dinner will be served in between concerts in the Faith commons for anyone who wishes to eat. A freewill donation will be taken to assist Traveling Choir students who will be singing at Carnegie Hall on June 14, 2009.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

God of the Sparrow

One of the hymns that we will be singing on Sunday, March 29, 2009 for the 7th Annual WLA Hymn Festival will be "God of the Sparrow", text by Jaroslav J. Vajda and tune by Carl F. Schalk.

Have you ever struggled to understand what God's Word means, or what a hymn or song is getting at, and then something happens that you just get it? That happened for me a couple years ago when I heard the Koine version of the Irish hymn "This is My Will" (Christian Worship 497). Up until that time, I didn't really get how to "correctly" perform that hymn. Then I heard them perform it, both live and on one of their CDs (Gesangbuch), and the music and setting suddenly made sense.

Well, that just happened to me with "God of the Sparrow." Honestly, I have not understood two things about this hymn: (1) why does it keep asking questions that it doesn't answer, and (2) why has it become, according to statistics given by Carl Schalk to the 2002 WELS National Conference on Worship, Music, and the Arts, one of Vajda's most popular hymn texts?

I'm in the process of writing the program for the WLA Jaroslav Vajda Hymn Festival, and I Googled "God of the Sparrow" to speed up the process of retyping it into my program. This video was the first link on Google. I cried...many times. Now I understand a little bit better.

God of the sparrow
God of the whale
God of the swirling stars
How does the creature say Awe
How does the creature say Praise

God of the earthquake
God of the storm
God of the trumpet blast
How does the creature cry Woe
How does the creature cry Save

God of the rainbow
God of the cross
God of the empty grave
How does the creature say Grace
How does the creature say Thanks

God of the hungry
God of the sick
God of the prodigal
How does the creature say Care
How does the creature say Life

God of the neighbor
God of the foe
God of the pruning hook
How does the creature say Love
How does the creature say Peace

God of the ages
God of the hand
God of the loving heart
How do your children say Joy
How do your children say Home

Saturday, March 14, 2009

WSMA District Vocal Solo Ensemble Results - UPDATED LISTING

Each school year, WLA music students participate in the Wisconsin State Music Association (WSMA) Solo Ensemble Festival. The Solo Ensemble festival gives music students an opportunity to prepare a piece of music (some students enter as many and ten different pieces!) to be judged by a state-trained music adjudicator with the possible opportunity of performing at a state festival or even being named exemplary soloist!. The Flyway Conference has the tradition of hosting the district festival on two consecutive Staurdays in March, alternating instrumental and vocal each year. Last year, WLA hosted the schools of the Flyway Conference for the district solo ensemble festival. This year that responsibilty went to Laconia High School.

March 7, 2009 was the instrumental weekend, March 14, 2009 was the vocal weekend, and piano players could perform on either day. Even though March 14 was the first day of spring break for WLA students, almost 50 WLA music students performed in 26 events on that day and 10 of those events were given a "starred-1st" (*1) rating, advancing them to the State WSMA Solo Ensemble Festival on April 25, 2009 at UW-Oshkosh. Congratulations to all the WLA students who performed on both weekends. I am very proud of all of you and how you used your God-given musical gifts!

Qualified for State (Class A - *1st place)
*1 Haugly, Daniel 409A4 Music Theater-Male Role
*1 Haugly, Daniel 404A4043 Tenor Solo
*1 Plagenz, Peter 405A1 Bass Solo
*1 Klein, Ben 404A15 Tenor Solo
*1 Wilsmann, Tanya 201A6 Flute Solo
*1 Wilsmann, Tanya 301A3016 Violin Solo
*1 Academy Kids 981A210 Mixed Show Choir

*1 Leisses, Janeen 408A1 Music Theater-Female Role
*1 Goltz, Kristen 402A4022 Alto Solo
*1 Goltz, Kristen 408A6 Music Theater-Female Role
*1 Moldenhauer, Daniel 306A16 Piano Solo
*1 Scharf, Charis 306A40 Piano Solo
*1 Breister, Adam 306A43 Piano Solo
*1 Westphal, Seth 500A5002 Concert Snare Drum Solo
*1 Kuhlow, Ashley 306A40 Piano Solo
*1 Plagenz, et al 941.4A3 TTBB Quartet

Class A - 1st place
1 Leisses, Janeen 210A10 Eb Alto Saxophone Solo
1 Pankratz, Stephanie 402A15 Alto Solo
1 Gieschen, et al 930.6A1 SSA Double Trio
1 Orvis, Rochelle 402A12 Alto Solo
1 Boelk, Hether 401A12 Soprano Solo
1 Scharf, Charis 101A9 Trumpet Solo
1 Kerr, Marta 301a3012 Violin Solo
1 Pacetti, Paul 500A3 Concert Snare Drum Solo
1 Schmidt, et al 622A8 Trombone Duet, Euphonium Duet, or Trombone-Euphonium Duet

Class A - 2nd place
2 Koepsell, Caitlin 207A2071 Oboe Solo
2 Scharf, Charis 401A12 Soprano Solo
2 Scharf, Charis 408A8 Music Theater-Female Role
2 Leisses, Janeen 401A1 Soprano Solo
2 Boelk, et al 920A4 SS, SA, AA Duet
2 Sugars, Nick 500A5 Concert Snare Drum Solo
2 Westphal, Seth 510A4 Drum Set Solo
2 Pankratz, Stephanie 306A15 Piano Solo

Class A - 3rd place
3 Wright, Mikayla 401A1 Soprano Solo

Class B - 1st place
1 Weiglein, Amberly 201B2 Flute Solo
1 Coleman, Kailee 203B6 Bb Clarinet Solo
1 Olesen, Hannah 306B12 Piano Solo
1 Thiesfeldt, Rachel 306B26 Piano Solo
1 Cutter, Merissa 306B29 Piano Solo
1 Schuppe, Shelby 306B29 Piano Solo
1 Marchant, Patrick 306B9 Piano Solo
1 Dabringer, Joseph 504B6 Marimba or Xylophone Solo

Class B - 2nd place
2 Scharf, et al 1083B6 Jazz Improvisation Combo
2 Pacetti, Paul 504B3 Marimba or Xylophone Solo
2 Pacetti, Paul 510B4 Drum Set Solo

Class C - 1st place
1 Herrewig, et al 920CT SS, SA, AA Duet
1 Krug, Jim 404C2 Tenor Solo
1 Trapp, et al 920CT SS, SA, AA Duet
1 Schmidt, Hannah 402C7 Alto Solo
1 Cutter, et al 920C7 SS, SA, AA Duet
1 Cedarquist, Bryce 101C3 Trumpet Solo
1 Bock, Katie 201C1 Flute Solo
1 Bock, Theresa 210C2 Eb Alto Saxophone Solo
1 Kapellen, Megan 306C12 Piano Solo
1 Newhauser, et al 922CT ST, SB, AT, AB Duet
1 Meyer, Becky 401C6 Soprano Solo

Class C - 2nd place
2 Reehl, et al 930.3C8 SSA Trio