Archive for March, 2012

The Lord Is My Shepherd (I Shall Never Want)

Sunday, March 11th, 2012

My setting of the 23d Psalm was performed at a concert in Brooklyn last night, at Our Lady of Refuge Church. The announcement on their website said this:

Annual Lenten Concert Saturday, March 10, 2012
This concert will feature the Haitian Choir directed by Bijoux, the Spanish Choir directed by Nidia Rivera, Instrumental Soloists featuring Glen Balck & Frantz Lafortune, The English Youth Choir, The English Adult Choir and the Parish Choirs.
The concert will also include renditions of Andrea Bocelli and a piece being performed for the very first time in public, Psalm 23 “The Lord Is My Shepherd” arranged and composed by Michael Cook who will be in attendance that night.

A soup dinner starts in the school hall at 6pm and concert starts at 7:45pm.
Tickets to the dinner and the concert are: $12 for adults and $5 for children under 12
Proceeds from the Concert Benefit the Parish Fund to Restore the Pipe Organ.

Melissa and I went to the 5:00 Mass, then the dinner and concert. The people were very friendly and welcoming. I was reminded of the Beatitudes: “Blessed are the poor,” because it is a poor parish. Interestingly enough, though, the church is very impressive – large, with beautiful stain glass windows. The dinner was a soup kitchen type of affair, a bowl of chicken soup and some bread, and a piece of bread pudding for dessert. Father Perry welcomed us, and led us in a song prayer. He is a terrific person, a priest who clearly loves his work.

I felt honored and touched by their treatment of my piece. They put my piece second to last, the last one being a sort of hymn in three languages we all sang together. They did a very good job – I liked their arrangement, and the piano player, the conductor, and members of the choir all really liked the piece and enjoyed doing it. They were concerned that I would like what they did with it – which I did. After the performance of Shepherd, the priest called me up to the front and gave me flowers – as I said, I was quite touched. And after the concert several audience members came up to me and said how much they liked the piece.