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My Thoughts on a Glorious Concert

Monday, November 17, 2008

My family and I recently enjoyed a great concert with the Bob Jones University Symphonic Band. I wrote this post the next day, but I have not had the right computer connected to the internet since then to post this article.

Recently, on a Tuesday night, my family and I had the privilege of attending a concert by the Bob Jones University Symphonic Band at Faith Baptist Church in Salisbury. We had a great time as we were able to enjoy the majestic sounds of the band as they played such great numbers as Crown Him with Many Crowns, Like a River Glorious, How Great Thou Art, and The King of Love My Shepherd Is. The music was excellent and filled the auditorium. It was also neat at some points to be able to sing with the symphonic band, although the nature of the band in the setting was such that you could sing as loud as you desired and no one was probably going to hear you (a good thing for those surrounding me.)

In addition to the great music, conductor Dan Turner did an excellent job of both keeping the evening very balanced and interesting. In the early beginning section, the music featured a selection of patriotic numbers such as This is My Country and God Bless America. During this time, Dr. Turner kept things light-hearted as he took some time to help educate the listeners by going through and introducing all the different instruments and having the band members demonstrate the various instruments. The whole presentation of the various instruments was done in such a way that it was enjoyable - tidbits were included, the few seconds of each instrument playing were generally of things funny and/or familiar (the Flintstones, Mario, etc.). The tidbits about the instruments were also a mix of interest and humor. For instance, he explained the way that a clarinet makes its sound and talked about the reed that is used, which is only grown in a place in France. He also talked about the fact that if you stretched out the French Horn (I think) it would be 18 feet long - although he commented on it with humor to this effect: "If you were to take the French Horn and connect it to the bus and drive the bus so that it stretched out the instrument, that would probably be a good thing - and it would reach about 18 feet." (Not an exact quote, but close.)

When the group moved towards the sacred numbers, an appropriate change in tone took place and explanations regarding some of the truths of the messages of the songs were given. At times we were encouraged to read the words in the hymn book as the band played the song so that we could get a fuller effect of the message being played. It was very well done and very appropriately done.

My children liked it so much that my nine-year old daughter used her hard-earned money to buy a CD which she has played which she has regularly played as she went to bed since then -and they begged me to bring them back to the school the next day as the BJU Symphonic Band was going to give another concert for Faith Baptist Academy on Wednesday morning. I let them talk me into it and we went and the band played a completely different selection of music and did another wonderful job. They even introduced all of the instruments again, but even that varied in a lot of ways from the presentation the night before to keep up interest of those (like us) who were there for both concerts.

It was a great night and a great morning. Thank you, BJU for your willingness to send out a team like this to be a blessing and encouragement. Thank you, Faith Baptist Church, for you ability to and willingness to host such a group. We enjoyed it very much.

Just my thoughts,