Favorite Songs and Hymns For School and Home, page: 0142

450 Of The World's Best Songs And Hymns, With Lyrics & Sheet music for voice & piano.

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Famous Choir.—There is perhaps no choir of music in the world equal to that of the Dom-Kirche, er Cathedral of Berlin. It is very celebrated, and said to be even better than the far-famed choir at Rome. It consists of about fifty singers, the treble and alto parts sung by boys. It is arranged in double chorus, and the music of the old composers, in eight parts, is often performed. The choir is entirely pro­fessional—that is, the singers are such by profession; they have learned to sing, and that is their business or calling. The boys who sing the upper parts are trained daily, and are preparing in their turn to be professors, teachers and composers of music, vocalists or instrumentalists here or elsewhere. The parts are, of course, well balanced as to power, and the chorus of men's voices, tenors and bassos singing in unison,
as they often do, is peculiarly grand and effective*
In addition to the regular choir, there is a preparatory department, consisting of some twenty or thirty fine-looking little boys of from eight to ten years of age. These are candidates for future membership, and form. a juvenile choir. They stand in one side of the choir,, and lead in the congregational singing, thus affording relief to the regular choir, and giving them time to breathe and recruit. We have said that these boys stand. This is equally true of the others, for there are no seats in the organ loft, and the members of the choir all stand during the whole service. The various exercises are distributed between the choir, the people, and the minister, so as to hold the atten­tion and keep all employed. Those parts of the ser­vice performed by the choir or people, are sung, and
COME, YE DISCONSOLATE.
Expression.             p                                                        jjj
that belonging to the minister is read. The congre­gational tunes are sung much slower than we heard them in England, and about the time similar tunes are sung in America. There is not an instant during the service that is unoccupied, one exercise following promptly upon another. There are no rubrical di­rections and the hymns are not read before they are sung. The hymns are known the moment one enters the church, their numbers being suspended on tablets in various parts of the house, so as to be seen by all; and the particular hymn that is about to be sung, or that is being sung, is known by the tablet in front of the organ loft_ which contains the number of that only, so that any one coming in after the service has been commenced, has only to look to the choir tablet, and be knows at once where to find his place. The
organ is not played when the choir sing, but is used only for voluntaries, interludes, and responses, and for accompanying the congregation.—Lowell Mason. Cowper's Wreck of the Royal George, and his Lines on Receipt of My Mother's Picture, will ever keep his memory warm; but his hymns are more than magnifi­cent. What power there is in the lines, ''Oh, for a closer walk with God," and " God moves in a mysterious way!" I have sometimes thought that to be the author of a hymn like "Nearer, my God, to Thee," and some others I could name, is the highest achievement of hu­man fame, one that angels themselves might envy. Yet Cowper died doubting about the hereafter, though, after his last breath had passed his face changed; a look, of surprise overspread it, as that of one who had unex­pectedly passed into everlasting rest.—J. T. Fields*,
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