If you’re interested in making music, there’s a group for you at First Christian. If you would like to know more about our choirs and ensembles, please talk to us after worship, call us at 330-688-4450, or email us at email@example.com.
Our youngest musicians are in Kindergarten through 2nd grade. They sing and play hand chimes, and twice a year they present a musical along with the Crusader Choir. Acorn Choir rehearses each Wednesday, 5:30-6:45 p.m.
This choir is for children in grades 3-6. They sing and begin to learn how to ring hand bells, and twice a year they present a musical along with the Acorn Choir. Crusader Choir rehearses 5:30-7:00 p.m. on Wednesdays.
Our adult choir is open to all adults and to high school students. We enjoy singing a variety of choral styles, including traditional, light classical, gospel, and contemporary. The Chancel Choir sings regularly in Sunday 10:45 a.m. worship and rehearses Thursdays, 7:30-9:00 p.m., accompanied by organist Andrea Drews. Ralph Lorenz is the director, assisted by Cheryl Neff Lorenz.
Spiritus is an auditioned ensemble of 12-16 singers, performing a wide variety of more difficult music in styles ranging from Renaissance to vocal jazz and everything in between. Spiritus is led by Ralph and Cheryl Neff Lorenz.
This group is for anyone, of any age from 6th grade through adults, who wants to play handbells. No previous experience or music-reading ability is necessary—that’s the unique thing about playing handbells. We’ll teach you what you need to know. This is our only intergenerational handbell group, and they have lots of fun. The more advanced ringers in the group help the others learn. Joyful Noise rehearses Wednesdays, 7:00-8:00 p.m. The director is Barb Eppley.
Joy Bells, our adult advanced handbell ensemble, performs year round for both church and community events and have traveled throughout Ohio and in Michigan, Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana, and Arizona. Joy Bells are directed by Ralph Lorenz.
This intergenerational group is open to all adults and to children 3rd grade and older. They interpret songs in sign language. Absolutely no experience is necessary; they learn each song together! Silent Praise rehearses two to three Sundays a month, 12:15-1:00 p.m. Cheryl Neff Lorenz is the director.
Celebration Ringers Alumni
First Christian Orchestra
The First Christian Orchestra is for instrumentalists of all ages who can read and play music at a hymn level. The orchestra occasionally accompanies congregational singing and plays special music, under the direction of Ralph Lorenz.
About the Music Staff
Ralph Lorenz and Cheryl Neff Lorenz were appointed Directors of Music at First Christian Church of Stow in November 1997.
Dr. Lorenz holds Bachelor of Music and Master of Arts degrees in composition from California State University Long Beach, and a Ph.D. in music theory from Indiana University. He is currently Associate Professor of Music Theory and Coordinator of Graduate Studies in the Hugh A. Glauser School of Music at Kent State University. Cheryl Neff Lorenz received a Bachelor of Music degree in Choral/Vocal Music from CSU Long Beach. Both are active as composers, arrangers, performers, and directors.
Andrea Drews earned a BA in Music Performance (Harpsichord) and Management from Hiram College and the MS in Human Resource Management from The University of Akron. She plays both organ and piano and accompanies the Chancel Choir. Andrea occasionally sings vocal solos within worship services. She has been an active member of the Akron Symphony Chorus, the Blossom Festival Chorus, and the Larry Wilgus Singers in the Christmas Music Spectacular.
Andrea Drews and Molly Halpin bring to our music program at First Christian Church many years of experience in the field of children’s and youth music. Both are active in many of our choirs and ensembles, as performers and/or directors. Each year they provide a nurturing, loving environment for children to grow in music and faith, and the congregation is blessed by the outstanding musical productions they direct.