Our Musical Connections page features upcoming performances in which First Parish folks will be participating. Check them out -- you may find a group that's just right for you to join or to enjoy supporting.
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Use our online form to send an announcement or to tell us about a group with First Parish participants -- one we may have missed or whose description needs updating.
Musical Groups in which
First Parish Folks Participate
Arlington Philharmonic Orchestra
Orlando Cela, Music Director. The Arlington Philharmonic Orchestra performs in five concerts during the season, including its Family Concert in February, two concerts with the Arlington-Belmont Chorale, and the PSA's Annual POPS! Concert in June. Rehearsals are held Wednesday nights at 7:30 pm at First Parish Arlington, UU from the Wednesday after Labor Day through May. www.psarlington.org.
Participating from First Parish: Robert Olson.
Established in 2002, this chamber group includes founding member/oboist Carl Schlaijker and vocalists, winds, keyboard and piano. They perform at Sunday "Evensong" services at the Lexington Unitarian-Universalist Church, among others. Past recordings can be heard on SoundCloud.
Boston Saengerfest Men's Chorus
Tom Berryman, Music Director. Boston Saengerfest Men’s Chorus (approximately 60 male choristers) performs in four or five concerts each year. The traditional but wide-ranging repertoire includes folk songs, love songs, spirituals and sacred music, classical excerpts, traditional English and Welsh songs and anthems, and an occasional show tune. www.saengerfest.org.
Participating from First Parish: Alan Schweitzer.
Cantilena, a Women's Chorale
Founded by First Parish's Music Director Emeritus Kenneth Seitz, Cantilena rehearses Monday evenings at First Parish and holds auditions for new members at the beginning of each fall and spring season. As of 2016, Jennifer Kane has recently been appointed Cantilena's current Music Director. www.cantilena.org.
Participating from First Parish: Libby Howell, Emily Rankin and Carol Seitz. Carl Schlaikjer has appeared with Cantilena as oboe soloist.
Chorus Pro Musica
Jamie Kirsch, Music Director. Chorus pro Musica is known for innovative programming and superb performances of beloved classics and new works that inspire singers and listeners alike. The chorus was founded in 1949 by the late Alfred Nash Patterson, one of the most influential forces in choral music in New England, and quickly built a superb reputation for its professional-level musical standards and innovative programming. www.choruspromusica.org.
Participating from First Parish: Janice Hegeman.
Dressed in period attire, the fifteen-member Colonial Singers presents music that people enjoyed in the American Colonies during the late 1700s, particularly the songs created to promote either rebellion or loyalty to Britain. During concerts at historic Buckman Tavern, the Hancock-Clarke House, and the Munroe Tavern, and events sponsored by the Lexington Historical Society, the group's director, Diane Taraz, explains the background of each song.
Participating from First Parish: Diane Taraz.
Concord Women's Chorus
Jane Ring Frank, Director. Based in Concord, Massachusetts, the Concord Women's chorus, founded in 1960, is comprised of approximately 60 singers from Concord and the greater Boston area. The chorus performs a wide variety of choral music, ranging from early music to contemporary repertoire. www.concordwomenschorus.org.
Participating from First Parish: Jennifer Kobayashi.
David W. Hodgkins, Music Director. Coro Allegro is dedicated to the performance of significant choral works for the enjoyment of all. It is a not-for-profit musical organization composed of members and friends of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities and rehearsals are held from 6-9pm Sunday evenings at Church of the Covenant in downtown Boston. www.coroallegro.org.
Participating from First Parish: Andee Rubin.
Iveria is a male a cappella ensemble that sings folk songs and religious music from the Republic of Georgia in the Caucasus mountains. The group has been singing together since 1984 in the Boston area and was featured in services in August 2007 and March 2009, and they have contributed music for many blood drives at First Parish.
Participating from First Parish: John Burt and Jean Renard Ward.
Lexington Bicentennial Band
Jeff Leonard, Music Director. The Lexington Bicentennial Band, formed in 1974, is a community symphonic band playing seasonal concerts at Lexington High School and on Tuesday nights in summer at the Bandstand the corner of Mass. Avenue and Worthen Road in Lexington. www.lexbicband.org.
Participating from First Parish: Andrew Leonard, trombone.
Music for Viols and Friends (Duo Maresienne)
Carol Lewis, treble viol, and Chris Olaf Henriksen, lutes and guitars, and a consort of professional viols continue a series of concerts which they began in 1993, on Friday nights in Lindsay Chapel (First Church, Cambridge) and Sunday afternoons at the Somerville Museum. These concerts feature handmade arrangments from original seventeenth-century manuscript sources, and often include local early music luminaries on instruments such as the cornetto and recorder. www.duomaresienne.com.
Participating from First Parish: Carol Lewis and Chris Olaf Henriksen.
Nick Page, Artistic Director. The Mystic Chorale is a community that shares a love of celebration, joining voices to create a living harmony that is joyful, healing, and compassionate. No auditions are required. The group rehearses Tuesday evenings at First Parish. www.mysticchorale.org.
Participating from First Parish: Bill and Peggy Gardiner, Sherry Greene, Peter Howell, Joanne Klys, Jack Matson, Tish Miller, Wendy Page, Lynn Rosenbaum, Sally Russell and Dick Terry.
New World Chorale
Holly MacEwen Krafka, Artistic Director. The New World Chorale was founded in 1999 by Holly MacEwen Krafka and John Zielinski with the mission of performing the best choral music and the goal of performing with many of the finest orchestras in New England. NWC’s membership comprises some of the Boston area’s most experienced choral singers and soloists who have performed both locally and internationally with the world’s major orchestras. www.newworldchorale.org.
Participating from First Parish: Andrew Leonard.
Gil Rose, Conductor. Founded in 2013 by Artistic Director/Conductor Gil Rose, Odyssey Opera presents adventurous and eclectic works that affirm opera as a powerful expression of the human experience. Its world-class artists perform the operatic repertoire from its historic beginnings through lesser-known masterpieces to contemporary new works and commissions in a variety of formats and venues. www.odysseyopera.org.
Participating from First Parish: Janice Hegeman.
Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra
The Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra is a five-piece rock band with seven singers who perform rock classics by Queen, Bowie, Zeppelin, The Who, and the Beatles. Michael Leonard (Leonardo), son of First Parish tenor Andrew Leonard, performs Pinball Wizard, Ziggy Stardust, and Space Odyssey and more. www.ultrasonicrockorchestra.com.
Jennifer Kobayashi, Director. The UUlations is a nine-member female a cappella group based at First Parish. The group performs a variety of music, leaning toward soft rock and golden oldies, but also ballads, classical, folk, devotional and jazz, in a variety of settings. The UUlations website provides more information and a schedule of planned performances both at First Parish and elsewhere.
Participating from First Parish: Meg Candilore, Lorraine Cooley, Laurie Francis, Carolyn Hodges, Jennifer Kobayashi, Dorothy May, Wendy Page, Carol Seitz and Diane Taraz.
Jay Lane, Director. Vox Lucens is a twelve-member vocal ensemble formed in 1998 to explore the Renaissance sacred and secular a capella repertoire. Choristers work cooperatively to develop programs combining popular favorites with lesser known works, often in original editions. Vox Lucens, Latin for "a shining voice," echoes not only the ensemble sound but also the group's hope to shed light on the many styles and textures of the Rennaisance repertoire. www.voxlucens.net.
Participating from First Parish: Laurie Francis and Diane Taraz.
Waltham Symphony Orchestra
Patrick Botti, Music Director. The Waltham Symphony Orchestra, led by Maestro Patrick Botti, is a full orchestra consisting of both professional, semi-professional, amateur and apprentice musicians. The Orchestra performs four concerts/year, including a holiday program and a March program featuring young soloists. There is a strong Arlington connection to the group as town residents Jing-Huey Wei, elementary and middle school instrumental music teacher for the Arlington Public Schools, and her husband, Seth Hamlin, are board members and principal players. It is not unusual to see Arlington youth musicians and singers participating in the concerts. www.walthamsymphony.org.
Participants from First Parish: Chris Botos, trombone.
Use our online form to send an announcement, update or to tell us about a group with First Parish participants. (Member login required to open form.)
Links for Individual Musicians of First Parish
The following is a biographical note about Carl Schlaikjer, who sings in our choir and frequently plays oboe during our services and other musical events:
Carl Schlaikjer, oboe, studied with Louis Speyer (Boston Symphony), Ray Still (Chicago symphony) at Aspen, and Ralph Gomberg (Boston Symphony). He is principal oboe of the Melrose Symphony Orchestra and of the Quincy Symphony Orchestra and performs with several chamber music ensembles including the Weston Wind Quintet and the Windhammer Chamber Players. He has been principal oboe with the Harvard-Radcliffe Orchestra, the MIT Symphony, the Newton Symphony Orchestra, and the New Symphony Orchestra of Newton. He was Chief Scientist with Electrochem Industries, formerly Battery Engineering, Inc., in Canton, Massachusetts, now retired.