It’s not just notes and words

One of my dreams came true this weekend. I got to go back to my old high school and sing some of my all-time favorite choral songs again with all of my old friends!! (ok, we’re not really that old, are we??)

This year marked the 25th anniversary of the opening of our high school- and Dr K, our choral director, has been there since the beginning.  So to celebrate, he invited anyone who had ever been a part of his top ensembles to join together for a reunion… except it was so much more than that.  I reconnected with my awesome high school choral director and some amazing friends- many of whom I haven’t seen in 15-20 years!

When I was in high school, the only thing that brought me joy was singing.  Chorus was everything to me.  All of my good friends were the ones I sang with in the Madrigal group.  We did everything together.  During my 3 years in high school, most of my day involved counting down the classes to my Madrigals bell.  My senior year, I took 3 music classes… and I also ate lunch in the choir room… so technically I spent half a day EVERY SINGLE DAY in that place- and I wouldn’t have traded a single moment of it.

I really can’t put into words how my chorus teacher changed my life. His love for music was contagious.  He said over and over throughout the years, “It’s not just notes and words.”  Anyone can sing the right words and notes on a page but it doesn’t make it music.  He taught us that music comes from the heart… and that good music must be sung with passion!  When I graduated high school,  “It’s not just notes and words” was my senior quote in the yearbook. Music was my life.

So, I went to college and got my degree in Music Education and even had the amazing experience of going back to my high school to student teach under him!  Again, he was a wonderful mentor and a friend.  I was so blessed to have that opportunity to reconnect with him as a college student, and to learn more about his craft of conducting and transforming notes and words into the most moving pieces of music I’ve ever heard.

So this past weekend, we sang many of our favorite songs together- again!  As I walked into the chorus room, I could already hear the harmony floating down the hallway.  I fought back tears as I looked around me.  It was overwhelming.  The sound of everyone singing again… the room looked like it had been frozen in time…we didn’t skip a beat.  Every breath, every ounce of emotion was there.  The memories, the smiles, the music, everything seemed as if no time had passed.  

And the most wonderful part of the whole thing was to see the impact Dr K has had on so many students over the years. I looked around at all the teachers, doctors, professionals, musicians, pastors…and I saw the incredible bond that we all share- one that will never be broken.

Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.  Ecclesiastes 4:12 

This is the song that every Madrigal group at our high school has sung at the end of every single concert for the past 25 years, and this is all of us singing together this past weekend.

May the Good Lord bless and keep you, till we meet again…

 

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Julie is an ordained elder in the Church of the Nazarene. She has a passion for leading worship, writing songs, preaching, teaching, and thrift store shopping. Julie has two amazing teenage daughters, two dogs ("fur babies"), and one wonderful hubby :)

21 thoughts on “It’s not just notes and words

    1. It was fantastic! I was truly blessed to have him as a teacher and mentor for all those years! He has made a huge impact on so many throughout his career-and continues to do so!

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  1. Oh, Julie! I can hear the excitement in your voice as you tell this story. I am so blessed that you had this amazing opportunity. Thank you for including the video!! 🙂

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