By Dr. Matthew Thompson serves as our Director of Music and Media
On October 6th and 7th, our church will host Spire Chamber Ensemble presenting a semi-staged performance of Craig Hella Johnson’s Considering Matthew Shepard in honor of the 25th anniversary of one of America’s most notorious anti-gay hate crimes. This dramatic Fusion Oratorio depicts the story of Matt, a 21-year-old gay student at the University of Wyoming who was kidnapped, beaten, and left to die on October 6, 1998. The music takes us on a journey of Matt’s story with music ranging from Bach to musical theatre, from country to soul, inviting us to come together as a community and to expand our care and empathy for one another, no matter our differences.
“Matt Shepard and his story have led me on an inspiring, challenging and deeply meaningful journey that I continue to this day. In composing Considering Matthew Shepard I wanted to create, within a musical framework, a space for reflection, consideration and unity around his life and legacy.”
— Craig Hella Johnson, Composer
“In my 15 years of professional conducting, I have rarely come across any musical work that has completely changed my life. I can honestly say Considering Matthew Shepard has transformed me from the inside out.”
— Ben Spalding, Conductor of Spire Chamber Ensemble
I join the voices of Craig and Ben by saying I wholeheartedly believe that in a world that seems divided, music serves to unite us. In this spirit, I extend an invitation to you to join in supporting this critical work of love and acceptance. Please attend and invite your friends and neighbors to come with you. Share this with everyone you know as we journey together to bring awareness, advocacy, and action for all of God’s children.
Make us one, Lord, make us one
Holy Spirit, make us one
Let Your love flow
So the world will know
We are one in You