Mormon Tabernacle Choir Blog

Watch GENTRI on the Music and the Spoken Word Internet Live Stream

If you have never watched a Music and the Spoken Word broadcast live streamed over the Internet, here’s an opportunity for you!  Each Sunday at 9:30 a.m. Mountain Time, the home page of connects followers to the live broadcast as it is performed in the Tabernacle on Temple Square in the Salt Lake City, Utah. Or you can use this link and go directly to the “Watch Music and the Spoken Word Live” web page. Join the broadcast using your computer, phone, or other Internet-connected mobile devices.

Try out the Internet stream this Sunday, May 22, as the Mormon Tabernacle Choir welcomes the acclaimed group GENTRI. Short for Gentleman’s Trio, GENTRI was formed in 2014 and includes tenors Brad Robins, Casey Elliott, and Bradley Quinn Lever. Trained vocalists and experienced performers, these talented men use their beautiful three-part harmony to create music that focuses on powerful, uplifting messages and inspirational themes.

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"Danny Boy": The History and Lyrics

“Danny Boy” is a popular ballad that was written in 1910. Many people associate the song with Ireland, even though lyricist Frederic Weatherly was a British lawyer. The connection came when his Irish-born sister-in-law sent him a copy of the tune “Londonderry Air” in 1913. Upon receiving it, Weatherly modified his lyrics to fit the meter of the tune.

“Londonderry Air” was discovered by Jane Ross in 1851 when she heard a traveling fiddler playing on the street of Limavady, Ireland. Ross asked if she could notate the music for her friend in Dublin who was trying to preserve the ancient music of Ireland. A video on the history of the song states, “Sadly [Ross] did not note the fiddler’s name, and he may forever remain anonymous.”

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Summer Rehearsal/Broadcast Schedule Changes Due to European Tour!

Mormon Tabernacle Choir President Ron Jarrett used these words when announcing the Choir’s Summer 2016 tour to Europe: “We are thrilled that for the first time in nearly two decades, international audiences will be able to enjoy the music of the Choir in person.” Tour dates extend from June 27 to July 16, 2016 with concerts in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium and the Netherlands. (Tickets for these concerts are still available.)

Adjustments have been made to the regular schedule of rehearsals and broadcasts in Salt Lake City during June and July.  Special events have been scheduled for those whose summer travel plans include a visit to Temple Square when the Choir and Orchestra are out of town. 

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Join us for the Spring Concert of Bells on Temple Square!

The Bells on Temple Square will present “Dancing with Bells,” its annual spring concert on Friday, June 10, 2016, at 7:30 p.m. in the Salt Lake Tabernacle.  The Bells on Temple Square will be under the direction of LeAnna Willmore, conductor, and Larry Smith, associate conductor. 

Anyone who has ever watched this delightful handbell ensemble perform will tell you that the artful bell ringing often looks like the performers are dancing with their bells. “With the bells, it not just about playing the notes,” said Teresa Winder, one of the charter members of the Bells on Temple Square. “It’s a visual art.” You don’t want to miss the chance to see and hear this performance.

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Former Choir Conductor Craig Jessop Receives Elite Utah Arts Award

Craig Jessop has a long history with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, beginning with his days as a Choir member from 1973 to 1977. He then returned as associate music director from 1995 to 1999, when he became the music director—a position he maintained until 2008.

During Jessop’s time with the Choir, 15 albums were recorded, the Orchestra at Temple Square was formed, and the Choir performed during the 2002 Winter Olympic Games, received a Grammy nomination for the Choir’s work on a Christmas album—Spirit of the Season, featuring Sissel—and even toured the Holy Land. Jessop was also instrumental in encouraging musician Alex Boyé to audition and join the Choir.

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Choir Retirements and New Beginnings

When people attend Mormon Tabernacle Choir concerts or listen to Choir recordings, many notice something unique about the Choir. Martin Jarvis, noted British actor who narrated the Choir’s 2015 Christmas concert, said this to Choir members about his experience:

“I’ve been able to see there is something that goes on. What is it called? Dedication? Commitment? Love? Joy? Inspiration? All these things meld together. And the expression as you are singing, the way you are all living inside the music, is something that I don’t really think I’ve seen before, in the same way. It’s all that commitment and love and celebration that makes me love the Choir.”
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Music and the Random Act—BYUtv’s Random Acts Features the Choir and Orchestra

Random Acts is a new heartwarming hidden-camera show that centers around doing good things for others in unexpected ways and will inspire viewers to pay it forward. The show airs Mondays at 8:30 p.m. mountain time on BYUtv, and episodes can be viewed on after they air.

In the fourth episode of the series, which involves the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square, a guest is surprised with the opportunity of a lifetime. Shelby Ward arrived early to the March 13, 2016, broadcast of Music and the Spoken Word, thinking she was there to see a special guest. She was completely surprised when the host, Lloyd Newell, announced to the audience that she would be performing with the Orchestra. She was quickly escorted downstairs and treated to *makeup, hair, and wardrobe.

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Choir and Orchestra Participate in BYUtv’s Random Acts

As children we learn we must be kind to others, but as we grow into adults do we remember to continue that pattern of behavior toward others?  Do we look for ways to reach out to others who might need our help? A well-known youth leader has said recently, “It is the love of God and neighbor that gives meaning to life.”

Random Acts, a new original television hidden-camera series which premiered earlier this month, recently filmed one of its upcoming episodes in the Salt Lake Tabernacle with the help of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square.  Watch what happens as the guest is surprised with an opportunity that fulfilled a long-held dream. Episode 4 is scheduled to be aired on April 25, 2016 on BYUtv or you can watch it online among Random Acts episodes after it has aired.

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