By AMY HEGGEN
---- — ELLENBURG — The folk choir at St. Edmund’s Church has stepped up their rehearsals from once to twice weekly to practice for the church’s upcoming Easter Vigil service.
Ordinarily, the choir rehearses on Saturdays before evening Mass, but now they’re practicing Monday evenings as well.
“It’s a folk choir. It’s really not the same as a big choir,” said Melody Levison, who leads the choir.
The music they play has a country feel that appeals to the church congregation, the Ellenburg woman said.
“A lot of (the music) has more of a country flavor, but not all of it,” Levison said. “It’s sacred music, regular church music.”
An organist will accompany the group for the Easter Vigil service, which is at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 30. Other instruments include a keyboard, guitar, trumpet, bass, violin and flute. A 10-stringed steel guitar is even occasionally played.
As volunteers, the members are not always able to attend rehearsals or performances because of conflicting schedules.
“That’s something one never knows for sure; we hope to have at least 14 or 15 (volunteers),” Levison said of their upcoming performance.
The choir, which formed in 2002, includes a range of age groups.
“It’s a mixture of younger kids and older people, from 11 up to retired ages,” Levison said.
Levison said she thinks the age range is a benefit to the group, and she appreciates their diversity.
“The choir has a different sound just because of the different people and the different ways they have of expressing themselves musically.”
Rob Rubado, who has produced some original compositions for the choir with Levison, said there is a favorite psalm among the members that sums up what the choir is about.
Psalms 33:2-3 reads: “Praise the Lord with the harp; make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre. Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy.”IF YOU GO WHAT: Easter Vigil service. WHEN: 8 p.m. Saturday, March 30. WHERE: St. Edmund's Church, 5526 Route 11, Ellenburg. CONTACT: 594-3907