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performing in churches ?

Deckman 16 Oct 10 - 06:39 PM
GUEST,andrewq 16 Oct 10 - 06:53 PM
Joe Offer 16 Oct 10 - 06:55 PM
Tootler 16 Oct 10 - 06:58 PM
Deckman 16 Oct 10 - 07:08 PM
GUEST,Russ 16 Oct 10 - 07:15 PM
Leadfingers 16 Oct 10 - 07:54 PM
olddude 16 Oct 10 - 08:01 PM
Joe Offer 16 Oct 10 - 08:14 PM
Crowhugger 16 Oct 10 - 09:24 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 16 Oct 10 - 09:38 PM
Slag 16 Oct 10 - 09:44 PM
Deckman 16 Oct 10 - 10:14 PM
wysiwyg 16 Oct 10 - 10:24 PM
Deckman 16 Oct 10 - 10:28 PM
Deckman 16 Oct 10 - 10:43 PM
open mike 16 Oct 10 - 11:00 PM
Deckman 16 Oct 10 - 11:23 PM
DebC 16 Oct 10 - 11:40 PM
Deckman 16 Oct 10 - 11:44 PM
GUEST,mg 16 Oct 10 - 11:46 PM
Deckman 16 Oct 10 - 11:54 PM
Tim Chesterton 17 Oct 10 - 12:04 AM
Joe Offer 17 Oct 10 - 12:25 AM
Deckman 17 Oct 10 - 12:28 AM
Deckman 17 Oct 10 - 12:44 AM
GUEST,mg` 17 Oct 10 - 01:02 AM
dwditty 17 Oct 10 - 02:30 AM
open mike 17 Oct 10 - 02:32 AM
Ebbie 17 Oct 10 - 02:59 AM
Tim Chesterton 17 Oct 10 - 04:59 AM
Fidjit 17 Oct 10 - 05:19 AM
Fidjit 17 Oct 10 - 05:21 AM
Bonzo3legs 17 Oct 10 - 08:19 AM
squeezeboxhp 17 Oct 10 - 09:26 AM
Alan Day 17 Oct 10 - 11:45 AM
Phil Cooper 17 Oct 10 - 12:04 PM
Crowhugger 17 Oct 10 - 12:30 PM
Rabbi-Sol 17 Oct 10 - 01:42 PM
WalkaboutsVerse 17 Oct 10 - 02:25 PM
meself 17 Oct 10 - 04:11 PM
Deckman 17 Oct 10 - 05:23 PM
Janie 17 Oct 10 - 05:36 PM
Deckman 17 Oct 10 - 05:49 PM
Alan Day 17 Oct 10 - 05:55 PM
Suegorgeous 17 Oct 10 - 07:15 PM
Wesley S 17 Oct 10 - 07:48 PM
Janie 17 Oct 10 - 09:04 PM
GUEST,FloraG 18 Oct 10 - 04:43 AM
greg stephens 18 Oct 10 - 04:54 AM
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Subject: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 06:39 PM

I realize that I might be starting a discussion that will upset some folks. That's NOT my intent. I wish to pursue a SERIOUS discussion of the plusses and minuses of performing in a "church."

For your background ... I am NOT a believer in "churches." This does NOT mean that I don't have a faith. I have a faith and I follow it carefully.

I have, over the last few years, come to believe that "churches" are places that gather groups of believers of a particuliar faith/sect/denomination/cult/congregation. I have also come to recognize the downside of extreme beliefs.

It was just four years ago that I willingly shared a Seattle "church" venue for a concert with the wonderful Don Firth.

This morning I decided to NOT attend an upcomming concert of one of my most favorite folk perforems, because he has changed his venue to a "church."

In all honesty, I feel that if I enter a "church", I am giving validation to that faith/sect/denomination,cult/congregation.

Does anyone else out there agree with me? bob(deckman)nelson


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: GUEST,andrewq
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 06:53 PM

A church is its congregation not a building. If you're not attending a service I can't see how you are giving validation to its beliefs. Church buildings were used for markets and all kinds of things in earlier days; until recently they were always multi-functional buildings. Isn't it great that they make their often fantastic acoustic available for the wider community?

Andrew


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 06:55 PM

Hi, Bob-
Sometimes, churches can use a non-religious concert to advance their religious purposes, and that makes me uncomfortable. Most times, that's not the case unless the performance is "sacred music."

I guess I do feel a level of discomfort in most church concerts, even in my own church - because I view the space as "sacred space" intended for worship (and on the other hand, I feel very comfortable at the religious services of most non-fundamentalist religious denominations). Unitarian churches and Quaker meeting houses work well for concerts, because they're usually quite devoid of religious symbolism.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Tootler
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 06:58 PM

I belong to a recorder group and we regularly perform in churches. Although I am not a religious person, it doesn't give me any problems.

Mostly we are performing music as part of a concert of essentially secular music but I have been involved in performing as part of a service.

While I agree with you about the problems of extreme beliefs and we are seeing the consequences of this too often in the world just now, I am happy to support people on a personal level and to respect their beliefs.

On a purely practical level, churches often have excellent acoustics and there is something magical about performing a renaissance fantasy in the type of acoustic you often get in a church, especially an old one.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 07:08 PM

Thanks for your thoughtful postings. Joe ... your response addresses another delemma ... which churches are "safe churches" to attend, and which should I avoid. bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: GUEST,Russ
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 07:15 PM

Deckman,

If you feel that entering a church validates it,and that troubles you, don't do it.
This seems to be a situation where letting your conscience be your guide is the best approach.
Although I feel differently, I don't see any point in trying to bring you around to my point of view.

Russ (Permanent GUEST)


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Leadfingers
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 07:54 PM

Richmond VA has an excellent Traditional oriented Concert series in a Synagogue , well supported by the congregation , but NO religious connection at all = and its an excellent venue . No Problem for me as a Catholic to have played there .


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: olddude
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 08:01 PM

I am not a Baptist, yet one of my biggest fan's (his words not mine)
is a Baptist Minister ... Faith is one thing, my faith is serious, just because I don't attend someone else's church doesn't mean they can't like the music and enjoy it, they would not ask you if they did not ... people are people. But if you are uncomfortable with it then don't do it.   As far as attending someone's service. I been to a lot of beautiful services of all denominations. My one rule, start preaching on politics and not the Lord and I walk out ... that means my church also. For the most part, I never hear anything but the Lord and that makes me smile


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 08:14 PM

"Safe" churches, Bob?
Well, I've always found Unitarian and Reform/Conservative Jewish and Congregationalist (United Church of Christ) services to be delightful. Most United Methodist churches on the West Coast are nice, but not the East Coast. Most Lutheran churches, but not the Missouri Synod (although I have been to wonderful Missouri Synod churches). Episcopalian churches are usually quite nice, but some are overly formal and some are angry about the nationwide Episcopal Church accepting gays and women priests. Presbyterians are a mixed bag - many tend toward the born-again side, but some are very open and intellectually stimulating. Some Baptist churches defy the born-again stereotype and are absolutely wonderful (and have music to die for). Most Black churches are very welcoming, and have amazing music and legendarily musical sermons (the Pentecostals can be a bit much, however).

There is usually at least one Catholic church in every diocese that is the "liberal parish," and a number of others that can be quite nice - stay away from Catholic churches that have anti-abortion propaganda displayed, because it's a sure sign that anger is a dominant aspect of their agenda. Catholic Churches run by religious orders, especially Jesuits and Franciscans and Capuchins, tend to be very open - but there are some religious (dis)orders that are horribly doctrinaire. I'm a bit hesitant to invite people to my own parish, because I think of it as a "work in progress." My pastor and I have our disagreements, but I have to say that he does a wonderful job in contact with the public, especially at weddings, baptisms, and funerals. I am an Associate Member of the local province of the Sisters of Mercy, a wonderful group of Irish-born nuns - and I'm proud to invite anyone to activities at their convent. For the most part, they are brilliant women with a passion for social justice (Glenn Beck wouldn't like them). My (Cork-born) pastor had Jimmy Crowley perform at the Mercy convent a year or two ago, and it was wonderful to have great Irish music with all those earthy Irish women there.

I've never been to a Quaker meeting, but I've been to lectures and song gatherings and a Quaker music camp that are very folkie-friendly.

Orthodox Jews can be a mixed bag, too - but I've had a wonderful time associating with Orthodox Jews, and I can't get used to the female rabbis and cantors in Reform congregations.

Tootler mentioned doing recorder performances in churches. There's an annual Twelfth Night recorder performance in an old Lutheran church in Sacramento, and it's just perfect; as are the performances of a cappella Christmas music in the Catholic cathedral and the Franciscan church in Sacramento. I can't imagine them anywhere else. We have the advantage of having at least one Chanticleer concert a year. I would imagine that most of the members of Chanticleer must be gay, but somehow they have no problem finding old Catholic churches to perform in. For most of my lifetime, the Catholic Church had an unofficial "don't ask, don't tell" policy about gays, but conservative forces have lately forced the Catholic Church to tighten up on that and a number of other issues. Still, most Catholic parishes don't go out of their way to be offensive about gays and abortion and other things. If you don't make an issue of it, they won't.

I guess I wouldn't have too many qualms about attending most concerts in churches, but I've found that born-again churches have a hard time resisting the temptation to proselytize (and pass the collection plate) during performances. Most other churches are very welcoming to people who attend concerts, and they're usually very generous with cookies, coffee, and jello mold. They usually won't push their religion on you - but they do like it if you eat hearty. Don't expect gourmet coffee - I don't know why, but churches are tied to those godawful percolators. This is an important thing to know about churches - they really want you to eat, far more than they want you to believe what they believe.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Crowhugger
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 09:24 PM

I expect the likelihood of proselytizing to be lower when someone has rented the building for the event, of course depending on who that someone is.

And, sometimes 'passing the plate' isn't about supporting the church; it can also be that the performers are simply charging whatever you can afford; this I've seen mostly when the performer is a member of the church and gets to use it at little or no charge.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 09:38 PM

Mr. Deckman



Follow your instinct.



You do not KNOW the theology...



Sinerely.

Gargoyle



WHY go...into realms you do not know? More than a score have scratched critter's back a decade before.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Slag
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 09:44 PM

Interesting post Joe.

All churches have an "agenda" just as all businesses have one and all embassies have one (or two;)) as well as any other organization. Just visiting shouldn't tarnish your reputation or theirs but it is wise to learn of their agenda and any hidden agendas they may have. You are right to be concerned that some may be using your appearence or visit to promote something which you do not support. Do your homework and if there is any doubt ask and make known your intent. It is always easier to not go than to have to explain yourself at a later date.

Having said that, I think that most community churches really just want their neighbors to know that they are regular folks too. They are not eating babies or stalking former members. Mostly, they are trying to overcome the bad publicity that rains down on all when some minority outfit does such things.

At these special meetings where entertainment is provided they are all there to have a good time but don't be surprised if they have a couple of "commericals" inviting folks back. After all that is why they are there, same as a business having a special event. They want cutomers to know where they are and what they can get. That's all.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 10:14 PM

Joe ... quite a wonderful post! You must be stuck at home on Saturday night without any gigs! Actually, if you were to switch a couple of your observations around, put it in the key "G" ... it would make a really good talking blues!

I am appreciating the comments. I think some folks are getting my thrust. bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: wysiwyg
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 10:24 PM

I don't think it helps to try to send a message by being more isolationist and exclusive than that which one wishes to protest. It's just not an effective way to make the statement... and if it hurts an artist's bottom line by narrowing their audience and CD purchases, who is helped there?

~S~


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 10:28 PM

Your answer confuses me, and I'd REALLY like to understand your point? bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 10:43 PM

I've re-read your post several times and I think I'm getting your drift. I'm NOT avoiding this concert to protest. And I did e-mail the performer to say how dissapointed I am and why.

I think when "churches" open their doors for non religious events such as concerts, usually for a fee, they are trying to wear two hats that don't really fit well.

bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: open mike
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 11:00 PM

one event comes to mind and that is a bluegrass concert held at a ranch which is sponsored by an evangelical church. They are not at all interested in any other style of music being presented at this venue..
only musicians whose music is predominantly gospel -- no "secular" music.

On the other hand, churches often will hold concerts, especially in their social hall...not always in the sanctuary. And as was mentioned,
their facilities are often rented to presenters who have no affiliation
with their denomination. In Sweden, since churches are experiencing lower membership numbers, they often hold concerts in the main sanctuary. The places usually have good acoustics, ample seating (if not overly comfortable seats)for audience and serve as a good public meeting place or venue. There often is a good kitchen, as well, so preparing and serving food is convenient to do (to feed the multitude).


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 11:23 PM

Thanks for the post Laurel. BUT ... if I willingly walk into a church am not I giving tacit approval to that church's activities? bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: DebC
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 11:40 PM

I have performed a number of concerts in churches and it really depends on the space. I recall a time when I performed in a church and the performance space had a HUGE cross behind me.

I was very conscious of the symbol and because of that did not perform certain songs that I would have normally done. BTW-that decision was mine and mine alone, but I was still influenced by the symbol.

Debra Cowan


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 11:44 PM

But wait ... there's MORE ...

"If you wanna' get in trouble, let me tell you how to do it,
Just go to a church concert, and then you're into it,
'cause the room is big, and the seats are wood,
and the music doesn't really sound like it should ...
... kinda muffled .... tame ... and there ain't no wine!

The intermission is the time to beware,
You never know what to expect in there,
You're surrounded by bibles and tithing cards,
Everyone whispers it's no place for bards ...
... kinda quiet ... no joy ... spooky!

I'll grab my coat and hat and find the back door now! bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 11:46 PM

I don't know if you are or not but you are in line with the Catholic church of my childhood which forbad us to set foot in a Protestant church without permission from the pastor. That was for weddings and funerals basically. Don't bother asking if you can go just to attend a service. We also could not use the YMCA for similar reasons because they had religious activities there. So you would be following a long tradition of avoiding other churches for fear of spiritual contamination or something. mg


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 16 Oct 10 - 11:54 PM

MARY ... "SPIRTITUAL CONTAMINATION" ! Perfect ... I love it ... that's it ... I don't want to contaminate my spirit by walking in those doors. bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Tim Chesterton
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 12:04 AM

I'm actually the pastor of a church (Anglican), and I have played traditional folk music in pubs in which I'm sure a lot of people get drunk (which I don't want to endorse, although I'm not by any means a teetotaller). Should I stay away from the pub because of that? Or should I be happy that the pub gives me the opportunity to play for people who otherwise wouldn't hear my music? I have played music in coffee shops in which I know the reason the owner wanted live music was so that he could sell more coffee and treats. If there wasn't a benefit to the business owner they wouldn't be hosting live music.

We rent our church out from time to time for musical events (mainly piano recitals); the acoustics are pretty good and we seat about a hundred. We charge a minimal rate and in return for that the performers don't expect us to clear all the hymn books and prayer books out of our pews. Yes, there's a cross on the wall at the front; it's kind of attached, and we couldn't remove it without doing damage to the wall! But when we rent the facility out to someone we don't do it to try to convert them (although we are trying to build good relations with the community, just as the coffee shop owners are).


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 12:25 AM

I used to go to a gospel sing at a 150-yr-old, wooden evangelical church in Folsom, California. Most of the people singing were folkie musicians, not religious people. It was a most perfect venue for such a gathering.

And yes, the food was good.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 12:28 AM

Hmmm ? I appreciate your thoughtful answer. You mention that you are a pastor of Anglican church. Do you think it's possible that there are some people in your community that couldn't bring themselves to go through your doors?

My point is simply this: Performers should consider,carefully, the social implications of performing in a "church." bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 12:44 AM

Joe ... As you know, I'm a participant and teacher at "Rainy Camp", in Carnation, Washington. This is an annual get-a-way for us folkies up here. The event is held at an old "Boy Scout Camp" ... which has christian implications. As such, it consists of various buildings: bunk houses, the mess hall, the main meeting hall, and the chapel.

Last year, I was sheduled to teach my "Performing Skills" workshop in the Chapel building. I went in early, started setting up the chairs, getting ready for the class, when I was informed that I couldn't teach my class in that building because ... and I quote ... "This building is a holy place and must be reserved for spiritual music."

I almost left the campground, but I moved to another building and taught the class ... fool that I was!

My point is this ... as Debra Cowen implied earlier ... being/singing/teaching/performing ... in a "church" has implications that can't be ignored.

I'm still somewhat ashamed of myself for NOT making a fuss and leaving the campground. I compromised my religion. bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: GUEST,mg`
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 01:02 AM

We sang all sorts of nonspiritual music in that church. I think it is actually a chapel. I think people were somewhat restrained but not overly. Why would they assign a workshop there if you were only supposed to sing spiritual songs? I have been to that camp for years and never heard that. Anyway, who would go to a workshop of Catholic songs? Well someone I suppose.

And there is wine if you know where to look in Catholic churches. Unless of course it has been transubstantiated. mg


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: dwditty
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 02:30 AM

Lots of thoughtful comments here, but I still think this is a silly thread. By all means, Deckman, if you are not comfortable walking through the doors of a church, don't. If performers want to schedule a concert in a church, that is their perogative, regardless of what you think they should or shouldn't do. (your statement: Performers should consider,carefully, the social implications of performing in a "church.")

People are certainly entitled to their own opinions, especially when those opinions have no impact on what someone else may think or do. One of the big problems we have today occurs when people have one opinion and think others should follow suit. I don't get what possible objection you could have to people gathering to hear a performance in a church while you sit at home. How have they affected you?

dw


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: open mike
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 02:32 AM

presbyterians used to have grape juice for communion...i always felt there was somthing left out,,,,after all the verse does not state "the grape juice is my blood" welshe's juice was happy about it though..


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Ebbie
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 02:59 AM

The wintertime monthly concerts we put on are held in a Lutheran church because #1, it is just about the right size for our audiences (with overflow, about 140 people), #2, it's a good price ($100.) #3. it has great acoustics- most often we don't use a sound system; #4. the church people give us a key and we go in and set up, and return it to how we found it; #5. none of the church administrators are ever there, before, during or after.

Before we started hiring this hall, we made a donation to the Episcopalian church that one of the co-founders belonged to. We always donated at least 2/3 of what we took in, and when the church burnt down (we weren't there:) we donated our entire remaining kitty to them, about $2500.

That said, I still don'[t like having the concerts in a church. It seems to me that a good portion of a potential audience won't step foot inside a church and also I've had people ask me if it's a 'religious' concert, simply because it is a church.

But this is Juneau- and the churches are very inclusive; they make noises about 'serving the community'.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Tim Chesterton
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 04:59 AM

Bob - yes, by all means, I know there are some people in our community who wouldn't couldn't bring themselves to go through our doors, for all sorts of reasons.

For several years I organised a fundraising concert for Habitat for Humanity, with musicians of all faiths and none playing their music for a good cause. I have good relationships with many people in the folk music community in our city (of which, of course, I am a part), and they were happy to help out. Some didn't have a problem performing in a church, others told me that it was a psychological barrier to get across when they first arrived. To me that was part of the benefit of the event - helping people on all sides have the courage to start crossing barriers.

I understand that we have some beliefs about God and Jesus that many people in the folk music community don't share; that's fair enough (and it works the other way too!). But when I think of how we try to live out those beliefs in our church - trying to help the poor and needy, trying to be a community that welcomes strangers, learning to love our enemies and be peacemakers etc. etc. - well, I think in many ways it's very compatible with the ethos of folk music.

But I appreciate your sharing your thoughts, and would be glad to hear any ideas you might have about how we can build better bridges, while continuing to live out our respective beliefs with integrity.

Tim


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Fidjit
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 05:19 AM

We Spellmän (Musicians) do lots of Churches here in Sweden. They even allow the Devils instruments in them (Fiddles and Melodeons) Also Folk dance groups too. And all sorts of others, Bluegrass, Opera. Etc. Etc. Can be quite lucrative too. And there's the added bonus of good acoustics. A group I play with recorded our CD in a Church.

I personally turn off when they do the religions bit, but that's me.

The audience is always appreciative and as an artist that, and the exposure is what we want.

Chas


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Fidjit
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 05:21 AM

Oh Yes.
And on one solo Gig I did Sid Kippers, "Happy Clappy Chappy"
That went down quite well.

Chas


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Bonzo3legs
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 08:19 AM

Saw Show of Hands in a church this week - their current tour is entirely in churches in the UK. One thing you don't need in a church is a reverb unit!!!


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: squeezeboxhp
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 09:26 AM

i have performed with a longsword team in quite a few churches and the only ptoblem is the churches with tiled floors at the front end make dancing in iron shod clogs both slippy and noisy, the accoustics make the melodeon sound great though.
i have also played ceilidh's in variouis denominations churches but the oddest was the Mormon church who prayed that the band would be good before we started (we were good despite the orange juice only rule)
so Bob the answer is if you don't feel happy with it don't do it
Ken


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Alan Day
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 11:45 AM

Firstly I see no problems at all in playing in a Church,I can play a few hymns on my concertina and the Salvation Army used to have bands playing religious music.Surely it is how the music is received by the congregation that is the important factor.
Playing music in Church can offer problems however with sound, if it is an old church. I have heard a number of recordings recorded in church and the high ceilings create an echo, this is fantastic for slow pieces but with faster numbers the echo catches up with the music and creates a jumbled sound. Rather like playing two recordings of the same piece of music one about five seconds after the other. Some like this effect and with slow numbers it can be very moving, but is annoying to me after a short period of time.
Al


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Phil Cooper
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 12:04 PM

If there weren't churches willing to let other organizations use their facilities, there wouldn't be a lot of folk music societies. We've played many concerts in churches of all brands for concert series, and not been preached at. I've also played for a festival that had tobacco company sponsorship. I don't encourage smoking, no one tried to make me light up, either. I also still cashed the check.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Crowhugger
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 12:30 PM

"if I willingly walk into a church am not I giving tacit approval to that church's activities?"

Your personal threshold is the one that counts in making your choices. I dislike purchasing dog food at a particular large chain, but when the manufacturer went through last year re-branding there were supply problems at smaller retailers--the manufacturer was taking care of the "best" wholesale customer first, much to the annoyance of this retail customer. But rather than risk the output that can result from sudden diet changes, I bought from the big retailer I dislike.

You'd have to tell me, did I give tacit approval to that location or chain? My personal threshold prioritized feeding the dogs with consistent food over being careful to "vote with my money." Similarly, as has been said many ways, you have to prioritize your wish to support particular performers (including or excluding their choice of venue) in relation to your views about churches and/or religious organizations. Your choice whether you do so case by case or with a blanket decision with[out] exceptions.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Rabbi-Sol
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 01:42 PM

As an Orthodox Jew I am forbidden to enter a church for any purpose whatsoever. The first 10 years that I was eligible to vote I did not because the polling place was in the basement of a church. When the politicians finally realized how many votes they were losing from the Jewish community because of this they finally took the voting machines out of the church and put them in the local public school where they belong. Voter registration immediately tripled after this was done.

As president of the Borderline Folk Music Club, I had a clause inserted into our bylaws stating that none of our concerts or other functions can ever be held in a church even if it were given to us free of charge. I want to be able to attend all of my club's functions and out of respect to me this policy has remained in effect for the past 6 years even though the vast majority of the members are not orthodox and many not even Jewish.

This ban also extends to any church affiliated facilities such as a Catholic high school gymnasium or auditorium where crucifixes or statues of the Virgin Mary are prominently displayed. It falls under the prohibition of idolatry.

Our local hospital, Good Samaritan in Suffern, either covers up or removes the crucifixes from any rooms that are being occupied by Jewish patients. They really go out of their way to acommodate us.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: WalkaboutsVerse
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 02:25 PM

I've enjoyed evensongs in cathedrals, and folk in pubs, halls, and outdoor venues. I'd nationalise the churches of England so they would not need to host secular concerts for upkeep, etc., funds.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: meself
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 04:11 PM

Bob - If I may so, you seem a little confused: on the one hand, you don't want to play in churches for fear of seeming to condone various religious outlooks; on the other hand, you are peeved about having been barred from playing in a chapel on the basis that your music would not condone the religious outlook connected with that chapel. It seems to me that the people who barred you share your take on the situation: they don't feel that music that doesn't condone their religion belongs in their chapel; your initial post would indicate that you would feel the same way. I don't understand why you feel it's okay for you to refuse to play in their sacred space, but wrong for them to refuse to let you play in their sacred space ... ?

Am I missing something (has that loose screw finally fallen out)?


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 05:23 PM

YEP ... you got it right ... it's that damned loose screw again! bob


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Janie
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 05:36 PM

Bob,

I think it unlikely I would ever consider entering a church any kind of endorsement of a Church, and I find it difficult to believe anyone would think so.    I echo, however, those who have already said that if you are not comfortable with it, then don't.

I'm wondering - if you were vacationing in a city with a cathedral, synagogue, mosque, buddhist temple, etc. that was noted for it's architecture, historical significance or accoustics, would you eschew touring it?


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Deckman
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 05:49 PM

NOPE!


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Alan Day
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 05:55 PM

I have just picked up my hat and coat and I am leaving this one.
Al


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Suegorgeous
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 07:15 PM

I performed in a couple of churches a few weeks ago, and now I'm hooked - the acoustics were amazing, and it was a wonderful experience. I want to do more!

Does anyone know how I can find a list of churches in the UK that hold performance nights? I've tried googling, but not got very far.

Thanks.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Wesley S
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 07:48 PM

... if I willingly walk into a church am not I giving tacit approval to that church's activities? bob

If you take a tour of the White House are you supporting the policies of the President? The real question I would have to ask myself is where are the proceeds of the concert going? If it's in the performers and promoters pockets it's one thing. If the proceeds go toward supporting the programs and activities of the church involved that's something else alltogether. IF those activites upset you. My old church had regular concerts that supported a non-denominational food bank.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: Janie
Date: 17 Oct 10 - 09:04 PM

This is a bit of thread-drift, hope you will forgive it, Bob.

Suegorgeous, 8 or so years ago when the FSGW Getaway was held at Camp Ramblewood, my sister and I skipped some Saturday morning workshops to explore the area and spend some time together. We drove a few miles to Port Deposit, MD. It is a struggling and historic village on the fall-line of the Susquehanna River. We walked up to a lovely Methodist Church where there were a few people working on the grounds, and were invited to take tour of the building by the pastor. The entire interior of the building was beautiful wood, and when he led us to the sanctuary, which features a Steere organ, we entered an accoustical dream. He told us about the John Steere organ the church hosted, and seemed delighted to have us try out the accoustics by singing a couple of lines from a couple of songs.

I ain't no musician (though Sister is), and the accoustics made me sound like a folk diva.

At that time, according to the pastor, the membership of the church numbered 90 souls, not nearly enough to keep the place going financially. I just checked the website and now the membership is down to 39. I had been curious and concerned about how the building had fared during flooding a few years ago. Apparently it did survive.

May music, be it secular or "sacred" continue to have the opportunity to resound in such spaces.


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: GUEST,FloraG
Date: 18 Oct 10 - 04:43 AM

We do barn dances in our local church. Its a lovely shape and they screen off the alter. The group who turn up are a real community, like a large family. When I call a dance its interesting to note that anyone who wants to dance is included. Teenage boys will dance with teenage boys - and there is no agenda other than they want to join in.

The last time we did one there were no lights over the band area as the dramatic group had just finished a performance. This was solved by the vic going to get his mothers standard lamp.

If I was religious I could see the attraction of belonging to a group like this.
FloraG


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Subject: RE: performing in churches ?
From: greg stephens
Date: 18 Oct 10 - 04:54 AM

Well my partner and I just did a song at her brother's wedding. It was in a church whose bel;iefs I don't subscibe to. I imagine the vast majority of the guests come into the same category. So what? We were there to celebrate two people getting married, not to pass judgement on ther religious practises. Anybody who would refuse to sing in those circumstances(or refuse to attend for that matter) needs to have a pretty hard look at their beliefs.


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