By Daniel Zamora
“When the trumpets sounded…the wall collapsed” Joshua 6:20
“…David would take his harp and play. Then Relief would come to Saul” 1 Samuel 16:23
“Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals and other instruments, they raised their voices in praise to the Lord and sang… Then the temple of the Lord was filled with a cloud…for the glory of the Lord filled the temple of God.” 2 Chronicles 5:13-14
Every year in June, youth choirs from all over the United States attend the Nation’s Capital Festival of Youth Choirs. I had the opportunity of going this year and not only to accompany some anthems but to admire how youth voices could make such beautiful music together opening their mouths at the conductor’s cue.
From the moment the festival began, choir directors and counselors noticed the first rehearsal went beyond their expectations. Each choir member was prepared knowing his/her respective parts and many were ready to sing from memory. At the end of the second day, I was not sure about the remaining practices because the group sang so well.
Towards the end of the last day of rehearsals, they received an unexpected visit from the manager of one of the hotels across National City Christian Church, where the practices had been held. She wanted to listen to the choir in order to invite her hotel guest to attend. Randy Edwards indicated they would sing a few short excerpts from the festival music. The manager sat in the choir loft in front of the choir. Since there was no mention of any specific order, I got closer to the front to be available for accompanying.
They began singing “E’en so I love Thee, And in Thy praise will sing” from Jane Marshall’s anthem My Eternal King. Within a few seconds, the sanctuary was filled with sounds produced by these teenagers and I could not resist to walk in front of them to observe the visitor’s face but as I began doing it, the music became so intense that I had to stop, then went back to my seat and listen while tears flooded my eyes. Yes, the power of music had changed my mind, soul and spirit.