Thursday, July 29, 2010

jUST Parking

Here's a short article on parking at and near the University of St. Thomas to help you plan how to get to Sing Heavenly Harmony (a.k.a. SHH!)

Public Transportation
I would be remiss if I didn't provide a bit on the bus schedule!  Here's a list of buses routes in the near vicinity of St. Thomas.  Get more at http://www.metrotransit.org/.
  • #63
  • #21
  • #134
  • #87
  • #53
By Car
Parking at UST is especially challenging with the current construction projects in progress.  Here's some tips about where to park vehicle while you sing.
  • During the summer
    • On-campus: 
      • Weekends:  Most campus lots do not need a permit during the summer, so please use them!  The only restrictions are don't park in the handicapped spots unless you have plates or the hanger; meters are still patroled as well as other no-parking signs.  Here's a link to campus maps -- use the handy dropdown on the left to see where the various lots are.
      • Weekdays:  Unfortunately, the campus is pretty busy during the week and the campus lots closest to the library are full.  You'll find on-campus parking farther from the central core of campus -- consider it a warmup stroll to raise your heartbeat before singing!
      • More details on page 12 of UST's parking guide
    • On-street -- observe the posted signs, take note of hydrants and driveways.  Though you can get lucky finding a spot on the campus side of a street, you can also enjoy a lovely stroll through the beautiful residential neighborhoods around UST.  Four blocks away is a safe bet. 
  • During the academic year, the weekends function much like they do during the summer.  No permit is needed on campus lots until after 6 p.m.  On-street parking is available university side, just mind your signs to confirm.  The students are in their last month of the semester so they're hitting the books and campus hard. 
If you need driving directions to campus, their website has a page for all the directions you could be coming from AND the interactive map has mapquest/google map capabilities too. 
Can't wait to see and sing with you soon!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Hospice Harp & Song Presentation: 8/5, 7p

Music at the End of Life: A Presentation by Carol Sack
Thursday, August 5, 2010, 7 p.m.
All are welcome. 
Free of charge.

St. Luke Lutheran Church
1807 Field Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55116 (map)
651-698-9443

Carol Sack’s work of ministering to the dying through voice and harp has brought healing, peace, and even temporary alleviation of pain to hospice patients. Carol has many beautiful stories to tell. One such story is of a man in a hospice for homeless people, who would not respond to anyone. When she came to his room he immediately turned his back to her as he lay on his bed. She sang and played for a while. When it seemed like he had fallen asleep, she quit playing and quietly made preparations to leave. At that moment the man turned his head and simply said, “Play more.” Carol played for this man a number of times and it filled him with such peace he asked to be baptized shortly before his death.

Carol will share more stories as well as other aspects of her work. She will do this through art, pictures, and the beautiful music of her harp and voice. You will leave this evening blessed.

Carol is a missionary in Tokyo, Japan, where she both teaches Pastoral Harp at Lyra Precaria (Lyre Prayer) and ministers to the dying through voice and harp. She says she is nothing more than an instrument of God’s grace and love. Come and be filled with that grace and love.

(reprinted with permission)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Renaming SHH & upcoming dates

SHH is going through a bit of a makeover, trying on new word clothes to see if they fit.  Much thanks to Tammy, Carol, Mildy, Mary Lynn, Julie, and Jo whose thoughtful suggestions prompted more brainstorming.  How does "Sounds Hearts Hear in the Library" work for you?  Might the pain and joy our human lives experience fit within its bounds?  Could it invite stillness within for the stories to emerge around? 

Regardless of the event's name, more community singing is happening ... here's the 411 on dates and places
  • TODAY, Sun, Jul 18, 2:30-4:30p (co-hosted/lead by Julie Bonde)
  • Sun, Aug 1, 6-7:30p
  • Wed, Aug 18, noon-1p
  • Wed, Sept 1, noon-1p
(it looks like there's a 1st and 18th trend happening ... it's serendipity and not part of a conscious scheme.  Really!)

Location:

O'Shaughnessy-Frey Library, Room 108
University of St. Thomas, North Campus
(on Cleveland Ave just north of Summit Ave)
St. Paul, MN

Thanks again to you who shared personal requests about event times.  The times will be in flux for a bit longer with a goal of settling down by mid-fall.  If you'd like to add your voice to the chorus, click through to my earlier post about it. 

p.s. I'm working towards presenting an Around the World in Community Song-like program, matching up Daniel Levitin's book The World in Six Songs with community songs in English and other global languages.  Would love to have a cultural song from each continent -- if you've got a song to share, I'd love to hear & learn it!  And I'm willing to travel (there's three more continents on my bucket list and slews of countries!)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Tonight! Chamber Music featuring Arab-American composer

If you don't have plans around 7 p.m. tonight, Friday, July 16th, go to St. Mary's Episcopal Church in St. Paul for a chamber music concert that's not to be missed!  Unfortunately, I have misplaced the flyer with the details, so all I can remember is that it is an eclectic mix of instrumentalists and vocalist (no standard string quartet here) and that one of the composers on the program is Arab-American.  Sounds like it will be a wonderful earful ... sort of like this labyrinth at Como -- something you expect with some exotic twists!

St. Mary's address:  
1895 Laurel Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55401-5938

9:30 a.m. UPDATE:  More information about this concert can be found on Facebook.  The two composers on the program are Mohammed Fairouz and J.S. Bach. 
Hope to see you there!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

SHH! More Song Circle dates ...

Did you miss a singing event recently and now itching to sing a song, to make a joyful noise? 

Check out the Public Events link in the right column to see when the next public sings are.  Opportunities are on Wednesdays in Jul and Aug so far and a few dates on the weekend are coming up too.

Sing on while you're walking on sunshine!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Open Sings: July 7 is Faure's Requiem

Posted with permission --

The sixth season of Open Sings begins this Wednesday with Gabriel Fauré's Requiem. Please join us if you can at Church of the Epiphany, 4900 Nathan Lane North, in Plymouth, just west of Route 169 at the 49th Avenue exit (map).


Everything starts at 7 pm with a rehearsal for about an hour, followed by some delicious refreshments. We'll return to the sanctuary then to take it straight through from the top, no stopping.

Singers and instrumentalists of all ages and abilities are invited. Thanks to Bethel University, we have scores to lend, or you can bring your own. Music stands are also provided.

The orchestration is 2 bassoon, 4 horn, 2 trumpet, harp, organ, strings (lots of viola and cello; solo violin only). Any volunteers for the solo violin part?

Our soloists are Beth Jeddeloh and Steve Rosas, two incredible singers recently graduated from Luther College. Beth is also a product of the wonderful choral program at Armstrong High School, and has appeared in a number of musical theatre and opera productions. Steve was baritone section leader in Luther's Nordic Choir and also sang in several operas there.

Gabriel Fauré (1845-1924) began writing his Requiem at the age of 42, at the height of his creative powers. A master of lyricism, Fauré brought to the ancient text a rich and subtle beauty. Again and again throughout the work he returns to the theme of light, creating some of the most sublime moments in all of music.

Admission is free, but if you would like to contribute, our charity for the evening is Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity. A representative will speak to us briefly about Habitat's work. We suggest a donation of $10 — every dime we collect goes to Habitat.

This season includes three other works, all on Wednesdays in July:
  • July 14 - Vivaldi Gloria - to benefit the National Alliance on Mental Illness
    • 2 tpt, 2 oboe, 1 bssn, violin 1 & 2, viola, cello, bass - parts available here
  • July 21 - Mozart Requiem - to benefit Emergency Foodshelf Network
    • 2 clarinets or basset horns, 2 bssn, 2 tpt, 3 tbn, timp, violin 1 & 2, viola, cello, bass - parts available here
  • July 28 - Brahms Ein Deutsches Requiem (in English) - to benefit City House
    • 3 fl (3=picc), 2 ob, 2 cl, 2 bssn, 1 cbssn, 4 hn, 2 tpt, 3 tbn, 1 tuba, timp, harp, violin 1 & 2, viola 1 & 2, cello 1 & 2, bass - parts available here
Dress is casual and the church is air-conditioned. Please pass along this invitation. Bring your friends - all are welcome!

If you have any questions, ideas, criticisms, or suggestions, please email me - johnhoffacker@gmail.com - or call 612 850-9208.

See you Wednesday!

John Hoffacker

Saturday, July 3, 2010

SHH poll: dates, times, names

Q&A time!  I'm standing at a multi-road intersection with a few decisions to make.  Since SHH! is about communities make music together, I need more input from you, the community.  When you have a moment, please add your two cents to this Doodle poll about dates and times.

If you haven't completed a Doodle poll, here's what to do:  First enter your name or pseudonym in the "Your name" box.  Then select the green-yes; yellow-maybe; or red-no for each column-date/time combination.  Save your selections.  If your preferred option isn't listed, you can let me know what it is by adding a comment.  Look for the "Add a comment" lower on the page. 

Another thing I have been mulling about is the words used in the acronym, SHH.  Sing is set -- unless there's a different better than sliced bread word to describe what we're doing, Sing is staying.  It's my 'H' words that I'm waffly about.  Harmony is a good musical and group term for what we're doing.  It's that Heavenly word that I'm thinking about swapping out.  It has religious connotations that I worry may stear some folks away from the activity.  Using "holy" is the same, although I personally believe one should make the ordinary everyday activities holy.  What if I used "healing?"  Some folks swear music is the magic balm for their souls.  I'm not about to argue with them, but I'm afraid of using Healing in the title.  It feels too much like a promise -- one that I can't keep.  What do you think of "Sing Harmony Here @ [location of your choice]?"  "Here" isn't very descriptive, but it also avoids the heebie-jeebies of the others.  I'm open to suggestions -- Add a comment here, on the Doodle poll or drop me an email at pointsoflightmusic@gmail.com

Thanks for sharing your input!  I plan to schedule some sings shortly and use your feedback in the short and long term.  Stay tuned for details!