Perhaps most famously captured in Archbishop William Laud’s sixteenth century insistence on worshipping in “the beauty of holiness,” music has always been central to the liturgical life of the Anglican Communion. The central place of music is vibrant at Christ Church, where we focus on the beauty of liturgical music and find it in hymns and anthems drawn from across several centuries and numerous musical styles. Music provides both choir and congregation the opportunity to offer to God a “joyful noise.”
The Adult Choir consists of about fifteen singers, including three paid members. The choir provides an anthem each Sunday of the program year, additional music at special seasons, and supports congregational singing. The choir’s repertoire is varied, including chant, Tudor choral works, music of the Anglican Revival, spirituals, jazz, music of the American shape note tradition and recent works by contemporary composers.
The Adult Choir is always happy to welcome new members from among those High School aged or above. There is no audition, and no specific musical training is required. The choir rehearses on Thursday evenings, beginning at 8:00 pm.
THE CHRIST CHURCH ORGAN and PIANOS
Christ Church houses a three-manual, thirty-five rank Moeller organ, installed in 1951 and fully rebuilt in 1990 by Moeller. Built in the American Classic tradition, the organ adds greatly to the church’s liturgical and musical life. The organ console went through a complete restoration in 2015. The Church is also fortunate to have two fine pianos, a Chickering grand in the sanctuary and a Steinway grand in the choir hall.
DIRECTOR OF MUSIC
Christ Church welcomed William Davies as music director in August of 2011. Bill has served at several area Episcopal churches, including St. Mark’s, Mendham, St. Georges’, Maplewood and Trinity, Cliffside Park, as well as churches in Washington, DC. He heads the Department of History at Hackley School in Tarrytown, NY. Bill studied organ with Mildred Wagner and with Roy Horton. He holds a BA in history from Bowdoin College and an MA in theology from The Catholic University of America. He lives in Maplewood with his partner, Mark Ambrose.