From the Music Director
Welcome to Music at Marsh Chapel.
Considered to be one of the most vibrant parts of the greater university community, Music at Marsh Chapel enjoys a rich heritage of quality music making both in worship and concert. Our principal organizations are the Marsh Chapel Choir, the Marsh Chapel Thurman Choir, and the Inner Strength Gospel Choir.
Under the distinguished direction of Allen Lannom and Max Miller, the music program at the Chapel established an important reputation both in Boston and nationally, training many church musicians still practicing their art all over New England and elsewhere. In 1991, after thirty-five years of musical leadership, Max Miller retired, and Julian James Wachner was appointed University Organist and Choirmaster. During Dr. Wachner’s years at Marsh Chapel, the Chapel Choir refined its expertise in the performance of early music, but particularly in the performance of new music, much of which was written by Dr. Wachner for use at Marsh Chapel.
Building on these legacies, Music at Marsh Chapel continues to grow in quality, breadth of musical expertise, and national musical voice. The works of Johann Sebastian Bach have been central to our experience, with frequent performance of the St. John Passion during Holy Week, and with our annual Bach Experience, in which four Bach cantatas are presented in their original liturgical context throughout the academic year.
The Noak organ in the Robinson Chapel was made possible by a generous gift from the Jones family in memory of Gerald Jones. The main instrument at Marsh Chapel is the Casavant Opus 2000 organ given by Thomas C. Reed in memory of his father Gordon W. Reed. Rebuilt in 1985, a new console was designed and installed by Thad H. H. Outerbridge in 2004. With these instruments and a concert grand piano in the Main Chapel, Marsh Chapel is host to many concerts throughout the year.
In 2005, the Marsh Chapel Collegium was established to support and broaden the musical life of the Chapel in both worship and concert. The Collegium, our resident orchestra, is composed of students from the School of Music and has been an important and vital collaboration within the university. Participating regularly in support of the Cantata Series, the Collegium also appears in the concert series with the Marsh Chapel Choir and occasionally on their own.
Both the Chapel Choir and the Inner Strength Gospel Choir tour regularly, reaching audiences most recently in San Francisco, New York, and Montreal. The Gospel Choir performs in Sunday worship each semester in preparation for their two concerts presented in the academic year.
More information about membership in our ensembles, how to give, and about our concert schedules may be found at the links listed above. We are proud of the musical life at Marsh Chapel and encourage your participation, patronage, and active financial support to the life of this community.
Dr. Scott Allen Jarrett