Jazz Vespers is a new take on an old church service. Vespers was held in the evening, as part of the traditional daily services of the church, and served to bring the day to a spiritual end with music, prayer and repose. Such a service, but using the jazz musical genre, will be taking place on Sunday 19 June, at 7.00 pm in the Takapuna Methodist Church, and all are welcome.
Key to the service is the music, and this will be led on piano and organ by Barry Brinson, a well-known jazz pianist and organist. There is to be a specially formed small jazz choir, and contributions from the two excellent singing groups from Takapuna Grammar School, Skat-a-Tak and Bop-De-Wop. These young people will be fresh from singing their hearts out at the NZ Choral Federation’s “Big Sing” Festival in Auckland.
The service itself will comprise well known jazz standards, arranged for the choir by Barry, and intermingled with poetry, prayer and thoughts for the day. The choice of pieces reflects the spirituality available in jazz. There will also be opportunities for the congregation to swing along with the musicians, and Barry will be playing some of his own jazz compositions and arrangements on the big TMC pipe organ.
A collection will be taken to cover costs, and to contribute to the Church’s social service programme.
The use of the jazz style in church services is not new. The United Church of Canada, St Andrew’s Wesley Church has a Jazz Vespers every week, and the Baptist Churches of the southern United States and elsewhere where African Americans gather, are well known for this form of musical worship. Come and join in.