The Fayette County Choral Society will present the Sacred Choral Music of John Ness Beck this Sunday and the community is encouraged to attend.
The program will be held Sunday at 3 p.m. at the Grace United Methodist Church in Washington Court House. Special guest performers include the Chancel Bells of Grace United Methodist and the Clarion Ringers of the First Presbyterian Church, who are back by popular demand among other reasons. Tickets for the event can be purchased at the door with prices of $7 for adults and $5 for senior citizens, according to Richard Glass, the Fayette Choral Society director. School age children and younger can come at no charge. David Penwell will be the accompanist for the program.
According to hymntime.com, Beck was educated at Warren G. Harding High School and graduated in 1948. He attended Ohio State University where he earned his BA and BS by 1952. After working for a year in student union activities at the State College of Washington, he spent two years in the U.S. Army. During this time, he became increasingly involved in arranging for various musical groups. After his discharge from the military, he returned to Ohio State and completed his bachelor of music and master of arts degrees with composition as his major. He then served as a faculty member of the Ohio State University School of Music for seven years, teaching harmony and theory.
Beck left the university to become owner and manager of the University Music House, a retail sheet music store in Columbus. In this capacity, he was able to observe the business side of the music industry, gaining insight into the complexities of music publishing and merchandising. As his compositions found their way into print and popularity, he joined forces in 1972 with John Tatgenhorst in the creation of Beckenhorst Press. His reputation as a composer and his experience as a choral director soon led to an increasing demand for appearances as guest conductor and lecturer at various musical clinics and festivals throughout America. He was also music director of the University Baptist Church in Columbus, and was active in the music field until his death.
“Rehearsals are going well, but it is a bit different for us this year,” Glass said. “We usually combine pieces from multiple composers, but this year we are just performing John Ness Beck works. We are looking forward to performing for the community and we encourage them to attend. We will have the Chancel Bells and the Clarion Ringers performing a few pieces and then we will come together for a finale, which we also encourage the audience to sing along with us. We are one of the few performing arts groups in our county and we are made up of county residents. So please come and support the program while also listening to some beautiful choral music.”
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy