Music at UU Middleboro

October Music Musings

What joy to be back in our precious resonant Sanctuary on Sunday mornings – congregants scattered throughout the room, rafters lifting with soaring voices, technology streaming to those who cannot be with us in person. We are indeed back in church, and we are on a roll.

Choir registration is currently on hold because our numbers are maxed out. This is not a bad problem! The Chalice Choir sings for worship every other Sunday, and the “non-choir” Sundays are reserved for musicians to share solos or ensembles. Several years ago, we had an occasional “Family Choir” where any singers who showed up at 10:00 practiced a song together to share in a Musical Offering for the service. It was a fun intergenerational happening. Anybody up for this in October? I’m looking at the 16th and would love to hear your feedback. Fear not, a few members of the Chalice Choir always show up – it’s not like you’re naked up there on the chancel. 

We also occasionally put together Caring Choirs to go on the road to any congregant who desires some TLC with a 30-minute hymn-sing. I had a group on my front porch this summer after knee surgery, and it was thrilling to be surrounded by voices and familiar UU church music. True confession: I cried. I’m not a crier. It was great! 

December is coming up. I’m working on a caring choir gig for caroling at group homes as well as our “shut in” congregants – stay tuned for more. 

If you have questions about music, you can easily reach me through the church directory or by emailing music@uumiddleboro.org. And check out the new music page on the church website at www.uumiddleboro.org/music

Susan Land Hotchkiss, Director of Music

Upcoming Music events

Music at UU Middleboro

Installed in the chancel, we have an historic Woodberry & Harris tracker organ, circa 1890. The original manual pump was replaced with a motor when Middleboro Main Street was wired for electricity. There are two manuals (Swell and Great) plus a 27-note pedal board, and the mechanism is fully mechanical. The organ was most recently by Andover Organ Company in 2014 and is listed in the Organ Historical Society Database.

In the spring of 2019, the church purchased a new Mason & Hamlin baby grand piano. This piano was hand-made in Haverhill, Massachusetts, and produces state-of-the-art depth and quality of sound.

Music at the First UU Society of Middleboro is foundational to who we are, how we worship, and why we stay connected as a community. We are a “singing congregation” with an intention to build a musical community. We invite our members to explore a variety of musical styles, to focus on excellence rather than perfection, to support Sunday morning worship, and to carry our ministry out into the community.

The Chalice Choir is open to all and sings every other Sunday, making room for other solos and ensembles to share their musical offerings on alternate Sundays. Tuesday evenings are set aside for choir rehearsal from 7:00-8:30. Sunday morning is set aside for musicians to prepare for worship.

As needed, we form Caring Choirs to visit members and friends who are shut in and would like to hear or sing music from our two hymnals, Singing the Living Tradition and Singing the Journey. Larger Caring Choirs participate in programs for nursing homes, shelters, and community events. Caroling is always a popular activity.

We support music in children’s Religious Education by sending choir members into Sunday morning classes and creating a Family Choir for special services during the year.  

We have many fine instrumentalists in our congregation who share their gifts in worship as well as fundraising activities. Instruments include guitar, ukulele, mandolin, flute, recorder, crumhorn, trumpet, percussion, double bass, and hammered dulcimer. We are open to more!