But before the choirs head off to Europe for their tenth tour, they are giving the local community a taste of their musical talent with a free concert to be held at 7:30 p.m. on June 19 in the First Presbyterian Church Sanctuary at 700 N. Sheridan Road in Lake Forest. This kick-off celebration is open to all.
Titled “To Everything There Is a Season,” the Sanctuary and handbell choirs will take the audience through Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 with songs that embody each “time.” The concert includes a widely varied repertoire, from eighteenth-century German, to high Anglican, to American spirituals and Gospel music.
The choir will continue to sing during the 10 a.m. Sunday morning worship at First Presbyterian until they depart at the end of June.
During the tour, the Sanctuary Choir and Lakeminster Ringers will bring the joy of music to various church communities in these three nations.
“We like to hold at least one or our concerts at smaller churches that typically don’t have the opportunity to see these types of performances,”
“We always have a component of worship and mission when we go on tour,” Tropp explained.
In addition to sharing their talents, the choir also will have the opportunity to discover how music was able to help free the Soviet-occupied nations of Latvia and Estonia.
“During the occupation [of the Baltic states], the people continued to carry on their traditions, and they were not quiet about it. They were particularly bold during their choral festivals, both in Latvia and Estonia, defiantly singing their own folk music, in their own languages, despite attempts from the Soviet censors to remove it. Their actions are now considered to have been a significant catalyst bringing about the end of Soviet occupation, and they were able to make that happen without guns,” Tropp said. “It is an amazing story.”
The group will learn all about this movement and Estonian history, as well as contemporary life, during its stay in Tallinn. The choir’s visit also coincides with one of the largest choral events in the world: the Estonian Song and Dance Festival. The First Presbyterian choirs will be part of the more than 100,000 attendees of the festival that brings in 30,000 choral singers to perform.
“Choral music is the national pastime [of Estonia] and that makes it is a great place to go with a choir,” Tropp said. “Being there when the Song and Dance Festival is being held will make the trip even more spectacular.”
For more information about the concert, call the church office at (847) 234-6250. For more information about the choir and tour, please contact Jorina Fontelera at (224) 544-1959 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About First Presbyterian Church of Lake Forest
First Presbyterian Church of Lake Forest strives to send people out into the world who live its core values of worshipping, learning, connecting, serving and inviting. Worship is at the heart of the organization and its mission outreach, study groups, faith formation programs and fellowship opportunities grow out of the desire to love and serve the Lord together. Since its founding in 1859, the church continues to reflect the goals of its forefathers—