Music has the capacity to move us emotionally. Music engages our feelings and memories and helps us express what is in our hearts as well as on our minds. Music and congregational singing are responses that unite the faithful in giving praise and thanks to God. There are many opportunities at PHPC to share one’s gift for music.
Weekly rehearsals are Wednesdays, 7:15-8:30 pm, under the direction of Choir Director Steve Dean. The Chancel Choir includes people of varying ages and levels of experience, provides anthems and special music for the 11 am worship service every Sunday from August through May. In addition to leading special worship services during the seasons of Advent and Lent, the choir presents an annual Cabaret in early spring that serves as an annual fundraiser. The choir sings a variety of music, including classical, spirituals, and creative hymn arrangements.
Adult Handbell Choir
Weekly rehearsals on Wednesdays, 6:15-7:15 pm, from September to May. The Handbell Choir, made up of adults, youth and college students, plays several times each year during both worship services.
- Rise & Shine:
Children’s Church School for elementary age children begins with Rise & Shine, a time of fellowship and song before everyone heads to separate classes. On certain occasions, Rise & Shine will share the songs they’ve learned during a worship service.
- Youth Choir (grades 5-12):
Rehearses each Sunday at 12 pm. The Choir sings four times in worship during the year.
- Joyful Noise Ringers (grades 1-7):
Chime Choir rehearses on Sundays at 12:15 pm and Youth Handbell Choir rehearses at 12:50 pm.
OUR ORGAN AND ORGANIST
An article from the Gwinnett Daily Post on 2/18/14
By Deanna Allen
Hyoun Joo Song’s fingers flow lightly over two sets of keys, or manuals, as she plays a soft piece by Bach, “Wenn Wir in Höchsten Nöten Sein,” on a pipe organ.
The 42-year-old moves on to a louder piece, “Wur Nur Den Lieben Gott Lässt Walten,” also by Bach, deftly running her feet along a pedal board to create low notes. “That’s a pipe duster,” she laughed. “It dusts the pipes.”
The pipe organ, which is referred to as the king of instruments and has been around in some form for centuries, Song said, can be intimidating, with all its keys, buttons and pedals. The pipe organ at Pleasant Hill Presbyterian, where Song has played organ since 1991, is a hybrid organ, which combines real pipes with digital capabilities, as well as MIDI sounds. Song said the instrument is capable of producing more than 1,000 sounds.
“The organ itself has so many capacities of different sound, it’s almost as if conducting an orchestra from your organ pit right there,” the Duluth resident said. “When you have all those pipes going at one time, it’s really powerful.”
Song, who learned to play piano at the age of 7, started playing organ right out of high school and studied organ in college.
“Having been in church as long as I remember, I think kind of it was a natural thing to be interested in organ music,” Song said. “That’s a fancy instrument. It’s different from piano yet kind of similar, too.”