Lutheran series offers
mid-day music break from work
By Kevin Kelley
Published Feb. 23, 2005
If you're looking
for a high culture, yet relaxing musical encounter to recharge your
batteries for the weekday grind, look no farther than Messiah Lutheran
Church, 21485 Lorain Road in Fairview Park.
8, the church has been hosting "Music For Tuesdays," a weekly foray
into classical music. Every Tuesday at 12:10 p.m. in the sanctuary
of the church, between one and five musicians perform a concert
of about 45 minutes in length. Church members and guests are encouraged
to bring their own brown bag lunch; coffee, tea and cookies are
provided by the church.
is organized by David Gooding, Messiah Lutheran's director of music
ministries. Gooding, a voice teacher, composer and performer, has
a most impressive list of accomplishments and professional experiences
in the musical arts. He was chorusmaster with the Cleveland Opera
from 1992-2002, resident music director for the Cleveland Playhouse
from 1977 to 1990, and organist with the Cleveland Orchestra from
1961 through 1974. His resume lists orchestral and choral conducting
work and study with George Szell and Robert Shaw as well as composition
study with the great American composer Aaron Copland.
Gooding has had no problem bringing in talented musicians for the
from all over creation," Gooding said of the musicians he enlists.
"They're friends of mine. Occasionally they are singers who have
studied with me, professional instrumentalists, ensembles, sort
of a wide-ranging collection of performers -- people that I have
known and worked with over the years."
professional background of Gooding and his weekly troupe, the concert
series is surprisingly informal.
"It's the traditional
brown bag 'bring your lunch and we'll supply the beverages' -- and
in this case we supply the cookies, too -- (concert)," Gooding said.
"Come, stay as long as you can, leave early or come late. It's not
a strenuous sit-down concert."
covers a wide variety of music, ranging from religious to classical
to contemporary. Many of the concerts feature vocalists.
take place in the choir loft, which makes sense since that's where
the organ and piano are located. Performances not needing keyboard
instruments are done in the front of the church.
"It's a good
mid-week use of sacred space," said Gooding, who has been Messiah
Lutheran's music director since September.
played throughout the series are varied as well. Along with the
organ and piano, they include familiar ones such as the French horn
and trumpet. More unusual instruments played at Messiah Lutheran
have included a group of various-sized recorders and viols, ancient
string instruments which Gooding described as tiny cellos.
or another musician will give a short introduction of that week's
music or instruments being played.
offering is accepted, with money going to the choir fund for the
who are (performing) are almost without exception doing them gratis,"
Gooding said. "It's a labor of love just for about everyone involved
concert features Gooding on piano and David Pierce on recorder performing
Baroque delights. For a complete schedule of the series, which runs
through May 3, visit Messiah Lutheran Church's Web site at www.messiahFP.org.