Our Music Program at First Church is a glorious addition to our worship services. Through our vocal and instrumental choirs, we seek to enhance the worship experience through an artistic and loving expression of faithfulness.
We currently have two vocal choirs, a handbell choir, and a brass choir. Singers, keyboard players, and instrumentalists of all levels are welcome.
The majestic sound of our prized Austin Pipe Organ fills the sanctuary each Sunday. This magnificent instrument incorporates the latest technology and principles of fine organ building that have evolved through the centuries.
Contact Director of Music, Ross Cowing for more information.
The Blessed Brass
Blessed Brass is a treasure of First Church. There are few, if any, other churches that have a resident brass choir of 25-30 players to lead worship once a month, September through May. Blessed Brass was begun by church member Dan Woolpert in 1995. Dan is a talented music arranger and arranges all of the music for the brass. Once a month we are inspired by an extended prelude, hymn accompaniments, service music and sometimes an organ and brass postlude. Players rehearse once a month on a Monday evening. The age range of players is 16 to 90. This is truly an intergenerational group! New members are welcome. Please contact Dan for more more information.
Chamber Choir at First Church was started to provide singers who can't attend a weekly rehearsal to be part of the music ministry at First Church. Chamber Choir meets at 8:15 AM one Sunday a month and then sings at the 9:00 service. Our Quadrilateral Quartet serve as section leaders. Chamber Choir singers read well and typically have music training. The choir literature is eclectic. Membership in this group needs to be discussed with the Director of Music.
The Chancel Choir at First Church continues a long history of quality choral singing and worship leadership. The repertory of the choir is eclectic; ranging from classic sacred choral literature through works of contemporary sacred composers. Our Quadrilateral Quartet members serve as section leaders to provide continuity to our volunteer singers. Whether you are available weekly or less frequently, there is a place for you in Chancel Choir.
Chancel Choir sings three Sundays a month at the 9:00 service as well as Christmas Eve, Ash Wednesday, Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter. The choir also prepares at least one choral work yearly that is part of worship. Chancel Choir rehearses Thursday evenings 7:30-9:00 PM September through May.
Our five octave Handbell Choir rings at one service monthly, September through May. Members rehearse on Thursday 6:30-7:30. We have regular members, but are always in need of substitutes.
Our paid quartet is a bridge to the university and a unifying element of our worship music. First Church had a paid quartet for many years in the past. In 2016 the quartet was established again to provide musical leadership to our choirs. Members of the quartet have connection to the UW-Madison. As university students our quartet members are with us for a number of years and then go on with their careers. This fresh infusion of musical talent is a blessing to the congregation and choirs. Quartet members bring their musical expertise to our choral groups and receive training through experience in current church music literature. In addition to serving as section leaders, singers provide musical leadership as a quartet and soloists. The quartet takes its name from the Wesleyan Quadrilateral; scripture, tradition, reason, experience.
If you have particular gifts for vocal or instrumental music and are willing to share them on a Sunday morning, we often incorporate soloists and ensembles throughout the year.
Woodwind and percussion players are also scheduled as needed for ensembles and to accompany vocal ensembles.
Please let our Director of Music know your instrument and willingness to share during worship.