Music Mission Statement
Music at The First Unitarian Universalist Society of Burlington reflects the diversity of our community, our city, and our world. It is an important and enriching part of life at First UU.
Our music program honors the talents of adult and children’s choir members, our staff musicians, and guest musicians. Our Colby organ traces its pipe-work to its 1853 Johnson predecessor, and our sanctuary piano adds its inspiration to our services. Whether you are a listener, choral singer, vocalist, worshiper, instrumentalist, visitor or member, music accompanies you in your spiritual journey with us in our lovely New England sanctuary. We encourage you to contribute your talents to our music making!
The Adult Choir rehearses each Wednesday, September through mid-June, at 7:00 p.m., in the society Parlors. To join, simply show up at a rehearsal, or contact the Choir Director for more information.
Our children’s choir, comprised of young singers in kindergarten and up, performs five to six times a year at our Intergenerational worship services. Learning and performing Unitarian Universalist-spirited songs, and contributing their collective voices to the worship experience offers children a rich and meaningful experience in our congregation. The children's choir rehearses most Sunday mornings, from 10:20 to10:55, allowing children from both the 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. services to participate. The choir is directed by Emily Willette.
Our Colby organ was dedicated in 2006, just a year after a successful fund raising effort to provide an organ for this century. It's the fifth one in use in the meetinghouse. The first was purchased in Boston and transported here by sleigh at the time the meetinghouse was built. It was replaced in 1845 by an organ built by Henry Erben of New York.
In 1863, a Johnson organ was installed, said to be one of the finest organs in the country and one of the largest. The Johnson served faithfully for ninety years before it was replaced in 1954 by an Austin organ. Pipes from the Johnson were utilized in the Austin, and these pipes were again installed in the present Colby organ, thus maintaining a musical connection extending back to the Civil War era.
Consisting of three manuals plus pedal, over 1100 pipes in two divisions, and enhanced by modern digital technology, the organ provides support for congregational singing, enrichment of services, weddings and memorials, and opportunity for virtuoso concert performances.