Tenor Dad: Minister of Music

I have a new job.  This week I will be taking over as the minster of music at my church.  This is extremely exciting to me, and I have had a hard time keeping this news from all of you, but I had to wait for it become official and announced and all that.  You understand.

But what does this mean for me?  What does it mean for Tenor Dad?  Should I change the name of this blog to Minister of Music Dad?  Well, it means a lot of things, and I am going to attempt to process them in front of you right now.

For one thing, it means I am not going to be traveling as much I had been previously.  Part of that is because I just haven’t been getting any gigs (nothing this season, and so far nothing for next either), and the other part is that I don’t want to be away from my family as much these days.  With Ruby’s health issues, it would kill me if something happened to her while I was gone and I wasn’t home to help out.  So having a musical job that lets me work in town is a good thing for me right now.

But does it mean that I won’t be traveling at all?  Am I done with being an opera singer?  Well, it doesn’t necessarily mean that.  The nice thing about this new job is that it is flexible and part-time.  I have some generous vacation time and people who want to help and support me in all of my endeavors.  So if I get a contract or two and have to leave for a couple of weeks, it seems like something that can be worked out.  But like I said, I don’t have any contracts.  If you would like to offer me one, please leave your contact info in the comments below and I will be at your house within the hour.

What this also means is a lot of responsibility.  I have conducted a church choir before, and I have conducted various a cappella groups in the past.  I have training in singing of course, as well as vocal pedagogy, and I’m a pretty good musician, if I do say so myself.  But now I am the MINISTER OF MUSIC.  I am in charge of the choir, the handbell choir, the praise band, the youth choir, and pretty much any other music that might be going on in the church.  I will be planning worship services with the pastors.  I get to pick out the music!  This is all stuff that I have done before (well, not handbells…), but never all at once!  And not with so much autonomy!  I am so excited about it all, but also terrified that I am going to mess something up.

And I probably will mess something up at some point.  I guess I have to be okay with that.  This position actually opened up about a year ago and I didn’t apply for it.  I thought about it, but I was still traveling a lot in the Fall of 2011, and Ruby wasn’t having health issues, and I spent a lot of time thinking about why I wouldn’t be the best fit for the job.  But when the new guy they hired suddenly announced that he had been accepted into an awesome graduate program that he couldn’t pass up, and the position became available again, I started to think about what gifts I could bring to the church, rather than what things I lacked.  And isn’t that a better way to think about things in general anyway?

Whatever happens, it’s going to be an exciting ride.  I was introduced to the choir last night as the new director, and they seemed pretty happy about it, but I hadn’t been in the room more than five minutes before people started letting me know their preferences about when rehearsals should be, how long they should be, whether or not we should wear robes all the time, and which pieces we ought to be singing next.  And it hit me.  I get to decide all of those things.  That’s why they came over to let me know how they felt.  It’s incredibly thrilling to be going into a directing position with a choir so excited and passionate about everything.  And it is both exhilarating and terrifying to know that I will be implementing my personal vision of music in such a place as this with so many people counting on me.  Actually, it’s humbling.  But life’s an adventure, and this is mine.  And I honestly can’t wait to get started.

Posted in Church, Job, Music, Singing, Tenor Dad.


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