Q1: What is your name? Holly Phares
Q2: What is your Ministry Area or Standing Leadership Group Name? Music
Q3: What was the most significant accomplishment or insight gained in your ministry area in 2015? NA
Q4: Where is your group or ministry area stuck? What is your group or ministry area pondering? I don’t feel there is an area, from my perspective, in which we are “stuck”. We are, however, trying out a new system for participating in the choir. I am hopeful that this new system will not only enhance the quality of the ensemble and music overall, but increase membership as well. I am so grateful, thus far, for the willingness of so many long time members of old first choir to try out this totally new system. Their openness and love for singing is infectious! The area I have heard needs some care is with our children, so I am planning to get to know our youth and their potential for coming together to sing, as well as those who are proficient on an instrument, to share their instrumental gifts as well.
Q5: Please list the goals of your group or ministry for 2016 with complete descriptions. As stated above, I am hoping to increase the participation of singers and instrumentalists who are willing to share their gifts of music with us. From what I’ve been told, some of which I’ve already witnessed, there is an incredible potpourri of talent in this community and I am excited at the possibilities in which these gifts can be shared. I welcome a variety of styles from “Classical” Early Music through present-day Gospel, including Appalachian, Sacred Harp, Taize’, Bluegrass, and Jazz, to name a few! I foresee not only the full choir singing anthems, but smaller ensembles, both instrumental & vocal & a combination of both, whenever appropriate repertoire can be cultivated. I look forward to nurturing the array of musical talents throughout the year through gathering for solid, fun and productive rehearsals for participation in the worship services. Also, as stated above, I am also hopeful to begin to get to know the youth in our congregation and find ways in which we can include them in our music-making. This can be either singing with an adult choir anthem, a small children’s choir singing their own song(s), the sharing of their individual musical gifts (those who might enjoy playing or singing a solo or duet/trio with other children), to singing in an Easter or Christmas pageant or cantata with the adult choir. Lastly, I want to insure that we hear the wonderful organ at least once, if not twice per month, and I’m looking forward to our new friend and wonderful organist, Kyle Sheppard, sharing his gifts with us throughout the year. I am hopeful that he will not just play special offering pieces, hymns, and accompany the choir every so often, but maybe he and I can do piano and organ duets or piano duets for four hands.
Q6: What other comments do you have for the Annual Report I am so elated to be brought on as your new Artist in Residence at Old First. I look forward to exploring the possibilities in which we can enhance the already rich worship services every week and throughout the year.