Music

Music at Plymouth

At Plymouth, we celebrate the arts and believe they are one of many paths to the sacred. Here you will find a rich program, rooted in a deep history of artistry and mastery provided by talented staff. Our Music program is led by internationally renowned Philip Brunelle.

Music in worship ranges from works by contemporary composers, including commissioned world premieres, to sacred music from past centuries—expressing hallowed values and modern understandings of our relationship to the Divine.

9 a.m worship service features more contemporary music coordinated by Jazz pianist Laura Caviani, our First Service Music Director.

11 a.m. enjoy the deep sacred music and hymns provided by Philip Brunelle.

Programs and Offerings

YOUNG VOICES

3-5 year olds explore early musical concepts and skills through games, movement, and silly songs!  Parents, please plan to accompany your child(ren) for this 30 minute class.

CHERUBS

Cherub Choir (grades K-2) is about learning to be in an ensemble for the first time, how to sing in beautiful unison, how to work and learn as a team, and build basic music skills as they begin to focus on reading music.  This group sings approximately once every 8 weeks in worship.

CHORISTERS

Choristers (grades 3-6) are led to sing with joy and precision while they learn about the composers and cultural context of the pieces they perform. The collaborative nature of the group means that student ideas are heard and the product is a reflection of the choir’s ideas.  Choristers strengthen their basic music skills as they begin to read music and sing in multiple parts.  They sing approximately once every 6 weeks in worship.

YOUTH CHOIR

Youth Choir (grades 7-12) goes beyond singing and performs a wide range of musical pieces once a month during worship.  This ensemble values community and skill building along with finding your voice and celebrating it!  To join, a music background is helpful, but not required – but love of singing is essential.  Those who bring special music talents (composing, arranging or mixing) are welcome to join this group helping to make choral offerings at Plymouth come alive!

EARLY RINGERS

This group (grades 3-6) focus on fun and learning, using handchimes and homemade percussion to develop basic reading and performance skills.  With an emphasis on improvisation and working with others, these young bell-ringers participate from time to time in worship accompanying hymns and other musical performances.

YOUTH RINGERS

This group (grades 7-12) ring during the year, including Christmas Eve and Youth Sunday.  Their repertoire includes beginner- to intermediate-level music selected from the long, varies history of handbells.  The ability to read simple rhythms is preferred as this ensemble fcuses on musicianship and technique, creating expressive music to share with others.

CHAPEL SINGERS

Singers learn how to use their voices as part of an ensemble and build skills in part-singing, often using jazz and gospel music traditions.  This group welcomes singers of all abilities and experiences.  Chapel Singers sing regularly in worship throughout the church year.

PLYMOUTH ADULT CHOIR

Adults who have fond memories of singing in a high school or college choir – or wish they had – are encouraged to audition for the Plymouth Adult Choir.  This group of 50 singers rehearse 2 hours each week and sing for the 11AM service each Sunday.  Music ranges from the Renaissance to the present, including anthems commissioned for the Choir by noted composers like John Rutter, Libby Larsen, Carol Barnett and Jonathan Dove.  Anyone interested in singing should contact Plymouth’s organist-choirmaster Philip Brunelle.

Handbells

Adult Handbells
Led by Timothy O’Grady
Handbell ringing has been a Plymouth music tradition for decades. The main objective is to provide music for worship on a monthly basis and Christmas Eve at the late service, along with one community service performance each year and other periodic events at Plymouth and with the Plymouth Choir. Tryouts are not necessary but ringers must read music and have some rhythm skills.

Children’s and Youth Handbell Choirs
Introductory Bells (3rd–6th graders eligible)
Intermediate Ringers (7th graders and older)

Led by Timothy O’Grady

About Our Organ

From the church’s founding in 1857, each of Plymouth’s sanctuaries has housed a pipe organ built by some of America’s finest builders, including Hook & Hastings, Aeolian-Skinner and, since 1981, Holtkamp. The present organ is renowned as one of the finest in Minnesota, equally attuned for hymn playing, anthem accompaniment and solo organ repertoire. Philip Brunelle is only the third person to serve as Plymouth’s Organist-Choirmaster since 1900.