Free concert recording now available for viewing

BANGOR — From harp to hand bells to choirs comprised of youth and adults, the sounds of the season filled St. John’s Church in Bangor on Sunday afternoon, Dec. 19, at the 2021 edition of Musica Sacra, kicking off Christmas week for St. Paul the Apostle Parish.

Dr. Kevin Birch, the music director for the parish, welcomed community members for the special showcase of sacred Advent and Christmas music, a concert that included 17 pieces featuring a range of songs from Christmas carols to 15th century compositions. The St. John’s youth and adult choirs, along with harp, hand bells, and strings, were featured at the concert, which also included the melodeon, a type of reed organ played by Dr. Birch that was donated to the St. John’s Organ Society and was recently restored. The organ was made in Portland in the second half of the 19th century. The beautiful hand bells, played by choristers April Langley and Rebecca Graham as well as choral assistant Janet Weber, were a recent donation to St. John’s.

Hundreds gathered for the concert, not just in person but via livestream, which drew viewers from as far away as California. Though the concert was free, donations were accepted and over $700 were raised to support food assistance programs in the community.

“I am deeply grateful to the choristers and instrumentalists for sharing their time and talents and for bringing such joy to this holy season,” said Dr. Birch. “I’m also grateful to our audience for their support and generosity as we turn our concerns to those less fortunate in our community.”

If you were unable to attend the concert, but would like to view the recording, visit