Music at Cambridge Street United
Music at Cambridge St. United seeks to serve three purposes. On a personal level, the music should be able to uplift us, bring us into a closer, more intimate relationship with our Creator. Magnifying our joy, and upholding us in times of sorrow, the words and melodies that are offered hopefully impact each of us in positive ways. Collectively, as a congregation, it should help unify us, strengthen us as we together seek to do God’s work. Lifting our voices together in song certainly is one of the obvious unifying benefits. Thirdly, our music also needs to offer hope and encouragement to those who visit us and come through our doors, or as we bring the message of God’s love to others in the community and beyond. Hymns, anthems, and service music are chosen to compliment the church year, scripture readings and sermons. Our music strives to be both excellent and eclectic, representing the best of every period and style.
Choral music is an integral part of our worship – a means of expressing the faith and experiencing the gift of the spirit. Cambridge St. United offers a variety of choral programs for all ages. Musical highlights (outside of Sunday worship) have included bi-annual dessert concerts, Christmas concerts with La Jeunesse Youth Orchestra, Phantom of the Organ, Youth Choral Extravaganzas and Noon Hour Concerts during Lent. With almost 100 members actively involved in the music ministry at Cambridge St., you are encouraged to join one of the many ensembles we offer.
The Cherub Choir is our youngest choir (Junior Kindergarten to Gr 3). Rehearsals are Sundays before worship from 9:45 – 10:15. The Cherub Choir takes a leadership role in many of the Sunday services throughout the year, plays a large role in the Living Christmas Eve Service (which includes live animals), and has also presented a number of musicals.
The Voices of Victory Choir is divided into the Junior Choir (Grades 4-7), the Youth Choir (Gr. 8-12), the Young Men’s Ensemble for changed voices and the Full Choir. This amazing ensemble of 25 to 30 choristers has toured throughout central and eastern Canada, and New York, has been featured in a Christmas special on Vision TV, was the guest choir for Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, hosts bi-annual Youth Choral Extravaganzas and performs with La Jeunesse Youth Orchestra. For more information and how to get involved visit our website at www.voicesofvictorychoir.com
These groups rehearse regularly after school on Thursdays:
Junior Choir (Grades 4 – 7) – 4:00 – 5:25 pm
Youth Choir (Grades 8 – 12) – 4:30 – 6:00 pm
The Cambridge Street Singers welcomes our older youth and adults. Everyone is welcome to sing in our adult choir – no audition necessary, but a love of music and fellowship is a must. This choir rehearses every Thursday from 7:00 – 8:45 and provides choral music for Sunday worship services from September to the end of June as well as for special services and concerts.
In January 2003, a Handbell program was introduced with the purchase of a four-octave set of Malmark Handbells. In 2008 an additional three octave set of Hand Chimes was donated.
Cambridge St. Bellchoir consists of our experienced youth and adult ringers who ring about once a month for worship and also perform throughout the community, at the local hospital, nursing homes and retirement residences. The bellchoir also participates in the OGEHR handbell festivals where they have rung in Ottawa, London, and Hamilton. The Bellchoir meets on Wednesday evenings Sept. to May from 7:15 pm to 8:45 pm.
Bells 101 are workshops that are offered on occasion introducing attendees to the art of handbell ringing through a fun and hands on experience.
We are hoping to start a second group for those with no experience in bell ringing. Music reading is also not necessary to join this group (stay tuned for more details).
Our worship band plays the first Sunday of each month from September to June. Players are sent the music the week before, and rehearsals are on the Sunday that we play, typically starting at 9:40 in the sanctuary. If you play any instrument (brass, woodwinds, strings, guitar, percussion) you are most welcome.
Noon Hour Concerts during Lent are presented each year throughout the season of Lent. Five concerts are presented each week on Wednesdays at 12:00 and feature many of our local talented musicians. These are free to the general public.
Concerts at Cambridge St. presents four concerts throughout the year, often involving many of our talented church ensembles but will also include exceptional groups and individuals that are invited to perform in our beautiful sanctuary.
The Casavant Organ
Music sounds in many ways at Cambridge St. United and a place of prominence belongs to the organ. It is not without justification that the pipe organ is called the King of instruments. Its many voices, colours and moods are matched only by its technical complexity and by the richness of its role in civilization and Christian practice.
The organ of Cambridge St United, built by Casavant Freres of St. Hyacinthe, Quebec, one of North America’s greatest organ builders was dedicated in 1913. Work to refurbish the organ and console and add a number of digital stops, including an antiphonal division was carried out from 2007 to 2009 by the Phoenix Organ Company from Peterborough and Andrew Mead. The organ has three manuals, 60 speaking stops and over 2000 pipes.