Music & Arts Update

UUCC Music & Choir Bulletin #1

Lots of updates and reminders — here goes:

Music & Arts Meeting – Wednesday, 9/20/17, 7:30 pm in the sanctuary for discussion of ** items described below.

The Next Choir Rehearsal – Thursday, 9/21/17, 7:30 pm in the sanctuary.

Music and Choir

Welcome, Jonathan!
Jonathan Corey, our new Interim Music Director, is off to a great start! His first choir rehearsal was last Thursday, in which he prepped the choir to sing a special arrangement of Down in the River to Pray for our Ingathering service.

Contacting Jonathan
Jonathan’s email is

Jonathan’s Schedule and Duties
Jonathan will be working 20 hours per week for the next 3 months. Because he is commuting from Charlottesville, his time at church is being concentrated on Thursdays and Sundays. Jonathan’s duties are:
– Choir direction (once a week)
– Ensemble direction (once a week)
– Ensemble coordination (working with the leaders of small groups, on-going)
– Sunday morning accompaniment and direction of special music (Sundays unless arranged for substitution)
– Preparation and planning (as needed with minister, staff, members, own practice)
– Administrative (writing reports once a month, time sheets, updating music library with assistance)

Permanent Music Director
The search is on! Several people have contacted Scott Krell to express their interest in helping find candidates for this staff position. The group, in concert with Rev Amy, will collect input from the congregation, create a job description, post it, obtain and check references, arrange interviews and make a recommendation. Rev Amy is charged with making the final selection of staff.

**In Search of a Music & Arts Committee Chair
So who’s going to check on a singer who’s missed a couple of rehearsals? Who’s going to remind us that we’re supposed to wear chartreuse when we sing the next anthem? Who’s going to touch base with Jonathan for important things singers and musicians need to know? Who’s going to write a short monthly report to the Board about what’s happened musically and what’s planned? AND who’s going to work with our new permanent director to come up with the ’18-’19 music budget?

None of these duties is included in Jonathan’s job description; that leaves us to cover things that used to just “happen”.

UUCC’s by-laws state that every committee will have a chair; church membership is required to hold this position. If you can’t wait to express your interest until next Wednesday’s meeting, please contact me (, 749-4380).

**Lay-led Music
All music at UUCC does not happen on Sundays; it is also not all led by Jonathan. His job duties as part-time staff cannot include many of the activities we have learned to enjoy; that means we get to make them happen!

Our recorder players have been meeting weekly on their own. We had an Open Mic Night with a potluck just last week. Jammers who used to meet in Greg Leghart’s music room have moved to church to wake the Grateful Dead et al. Drummers will gather around the fire circle.

Monday and Tuesday evenings are open for such activities. There is not an expectation that groups will only meet to prepare music for a service, although Jonathan would love to know if your group would like to do that.

Meeting to try playing together just to see what happens can be a grand experiment! All you need to do is contact Raymond for an open slot ( and blast out your event through Facebook, the enews or word-of-mouth.

Hymn Jam Change
The “band” will be playing for some services, depending on the music that is chosen. Hymn Jam will become one of the many ensembles that Jonathan will call on to provide special music.

Some New Music Procedures
We will no longer be singing from xeroxed music. Publishers’ copies or electronic copies purchased online will be distributed to all singers. Each singer has his/her own “magic number” on your music. Music that is handed out will be kept in your numbered envelope. Envelopes live in the “music” box and can be picked up that the beginning of each rehearsal and turned in at the end.

Taking your music with you to work on outside of rehearsal is your choice. There will not be extra copies available so you’ll have to be sure to bring your envelope to rehearsal.

Making notations in your assigned copy will happen in pencil only; no more ink, markers or other permanent instruments, please! Pencils will be available at rehearsals.

After a piece is presented in a service, music will be turned in to the music librarian at the service’s conclusion (please see below). Missing music will have to be a) found, or b) replaced. ALL copies of Down to the River to Pray came home Sunday — perfect score so far!

Return Old Music and Folders
Several people have already returned their music notebooks and old xeroxed music — thanks so much! Our goal is to have all of this old material returned by October 19, 2017.

Some of the xeroxed copies you have were actually publishers’ copies that we paid to download. Please check for these titles: Sing by Joe Raposo and Love Changes Everything by Andrew Lloyd Webber/ arr. Ed Lojeski. Please pull these titles and put them on top of the pile of music you return!

Because the copies (except Sing and Love Changes Everything) must be shredded, it would be a great gift for you to remove staples, paper clips, sticky notes and other foreign objects prior to turning this music in. A basket labeled Old Choir Music will be available at rehearsals.

**ISO Music Librarian
We have a music library of 135+ titles in file cabinets in the Forbidden Room. We now have a cloud-based spreadsheet giving all pertinent information for the titles we own (# of copies, publisher, copy price, etc.) The music librarian gets access to all this info — yippee!
The music librarian’s job is to distribute and collect copies as we use them (see Some New Music Procedures above). The publishers’ copies will need to have numbered stickers put on the first time we sing them from here on out. The sticker templates are made and stickers are purchased; no big deal to print and about 10 minutes to stick and put copies in envelopes.

Collecting and refiling music is not difficult or time-consuming; it just needs to happen after each service in which we’ve sung a piece. The only slightly prickly part is reminding those from whom your didn’t get a returned copy. We got 100% after Down to the River so this won’t be a deal either!

If there are other pieces of our music program that you’d like given attention or if you’d just like to talk music, please contact me (, 749-4380).

Music at UUCC is really good because we make it! Thanks for the music and everything else you do that makes us the community where we love to be!

In gratitude, Wendy Sprout