Acapella Choir at Greater Atlanta Christian School was my favorite part of high school. My first 2 years I was a second soprano, my last 2, a second alto. I super loved it- getting to sing for an entire class period nearly every day, performing in chapel and at local churches, and the week-long choir tour that jump-started the summer every year.
Hark, I Hear The Harps Eternal was by far my favorite piece- and lucky for me- a CAGS choir staple. No spring or summer performance went without it- just like no Christmas performance was finished until Masters in This Hall and The Hallelujah Chorus.
The soprano line for Hark I Hear is made of magic, and the supporting voices just add to it to create not just a choral work, but an experience. It’s a masterpiece I never got to conduct myself in real life- only in my wildest dreams.
I do it well, though. My imaginary choir starts very softly, hearing “the harps eternal ringing on the farther shore,” getting louder as we “near those swollen waters with their deep and solemn roar,”until that first hallelujah about knocks you off your feet with joy.
A few weeks ago, I attended my first GACS Alumni Choir Reunion. Talk about getting bowled over with joy. We sang Hark I Hear, of course, and the Hallelujah Chorus; Salvation is Created, Ev’ry Time I Feel The Spirit, Ain’t Got Time to Die and others- making for a truly glorious night of choral praise and majesty.
I managed to hit first soprano notes I’d only pictured hitting in my mind- but mostly sang 2nd soprano, my old standby part.
I reconnected with my friend, Alisa and got to meet her beautiful family, and Beverly Love, the star of choir through the years said hi to me by name!
Yea I’m still just a little shy high schooler inside who wants to be great at something. I wanted to Beverly so bad!
But, I’m me and I’m great at that. Naturally, after the reunion I iTunes-ed all the songs we did and enjoy them on my commutes to and from work/visits. And, yes, by enjoy I mean blaring it through the speakers and shamelessly singing along.
These days I keep so busy praising my Jesus, I ain’t got time for much else, and it’s magical and soul-healing, and wondrous and makes me dream again.
I can’t wait for the next reunion. In the meantime, I hear the harps ringing and swelling, and the hallelujahs sweep me away, into a deep praise that makes me joyful and gives me peace.