With a Voice of Singing: Essays on Children, Choirs, and Music in the Church in Honor of Ronald A. Nelson

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With a Voice of Ringing: Essays on Children, Choirs., and Music in the Church in honor of Ronald A. Nelson edited by Zebulon M. Highben and Kristina M. Langlois. Minneapolis, MN: Kirk House Publications, 2007. 184 pp. ISBN-13: 978-1933-794-03-7. U.S. $16.00.

This Festschrift in honor of Ronald A. Nelson's eightieth birthday contains a wide variety of essays on many aspects of church music history and practice that will be of interest especially to Lutheran readers. Paul Manz provides the foreword to the book, pointing up the many-faceted aspects of Nelson's contribution to church music over the years: "The significance of someone so well-read in the rich and historic musical literature focusing knowledge, wisdom, and skill in service of music in the church cannot be overstated." The dozen chapters of the book are divided into three parts: Part I: Children's Choirs; Part II: Adult Choirs; and Part III: Music and Worship. The section on Children's Choirs opens with a memoir by Helen Kemp and also includes a historical survey of choir schools by Elizabeth Jenson Shepley. One of the hallmarks of Nelson's ministry at Westwood Lutheran Church in St. Louis Park, Minnesota was the church's choir school program. The section on Adult Choirs includes interesting interviews by Zebulon Highben of Anton Armstrong and John Ferguson and a chapter on "Teaching Global Song" by Ralph M. …