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Godspell and Bernstein’s Mass

[frame_left]Godspell[/frame_left] [frame_left]Bernstein[/frame_left] Godspell and Bernstein’s Mass: Faith and Unbelief in a Secular World. A course of the Mercer School of Theology led by Gregory Eaton, St. Ann’s Director of Music.

Six Sessions every other Wednesday, starting February 12, 2014, 7:00 pm. Dates: February 12 and 26; March 12 and 26; April 9 and 23, 2014. Held at St. Ann & the Holy Trinity, 157 Montague Street, Brooklyn Heights.

In 1971, both the Stephen Schwartz version of Godspell and Leonard Bernstein’s Mass: A Theatre Piece were premiered. Because Schwartz and Bernstein collaborated on the Mass, there is more of a connection between these pieces than most people realize. This course proposes to look closely at both works, particularly as regards the questions of faith and unbelief as articulated in each. Of the two, Mass is the more deeply questioning, and the issues raised have as much resonance today as they did in 1971. The six sessions of the class will also mirror our progression from Epiphany-tide through Lent and into Easter, as we discuss the impact that these works have on us as we hear them in the 21st Century.

Instructor: Gregory Eaton

Gregory Eaton has been the Director of Music and Organist of St. Ann & the Holy Trinity Church since 1993. At St. Ann’s he plays the landmark E.M. Skinner organ of 1925, and can be heard most weeks of the year in the church’s weekly organ recital every Wednesday at 1:10 p.m. He also serves as Dean of the Brooklyn Chapter of the American Guild of Organists.

A graduate of the University of Redlands, California, his major teachers have been Eva Clover in piano, Jeffrey Rickard in conducting, and Dr. Leslie Spelman in organ. An invitation to join the music staff of Trinity Church, Wall Street, brought Mr. Eaton to New York in 1984. After two years at Trinity, he served as Director of Music of the Church of the Epiphany in Manhattan, prior to accepting the position at St. Ann & the Holy Trinity.

Concurrent with most of these appointments, Mr. Eaton was Lecturer in Church Music of the General Theological Seminary, from 1984-2006. In addition to his church music activities, Mr. Eaton is also, with David Hurd, one of the co-founders of Chelsea Winds recorder ensemble, and an occasional composer of both sacred and secular music.

For further information and to sign up, go to the Mercer School Course website.

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