The Mormon Tabernacle Choir is often accompanied by the Orchestra at Temple Square and the Bells on Temple Square. What often amazes visitors is that none of these wonderful musicians are paid for their service.
This world famous and loved orchestra can be heard in person at no cost in one of the weekly Sunday Concerts which are held in the Mormon Tabernacle or at the Conference Center. The visitors in the summer time are so numerous that the Tabernacle on Temple Square cannot seat everyone. Both venues are wonderful. I do know that the performers love both, but prefer the Tabernacle.
For more than a century, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir has given voice to the hopes, joys, trials, and triumphs of people around the world.
This 360-member chorus of men and women, has performed at World’s Fairs and expositions, at inaugurations of U.S. presidents, in acclaimed concert halls from Australia and Europe to Asia and the Middle East, on television broadcasts, and now on YouTube and Facebook. The choir has even been referred to as “Americas Choir” as a result of their high standard of popular choral music.
Formed in 1999, the Orchestra fulfilled LDS Church leaders’ longtime dream of having a permanent orchestra both to enhance the quality o f choir performances and to involve instrumental musicians in Church music projects on the same volunteer basis as Tabernacle Choir members. While some initial recording contracts in the first years of the Orchestra’s existence were paid, with the creation of the Tabernacle Choir’s own recording label the 110-member Orchestra has evolved into a purely volunteer organization. Although many Orchestra members are professional musicians, in order to participate they are required to give their time and talents to the Orchestra at Temple Square without financial compensation.
Like the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, the Orchestra at Temple Square makes its home in the Salt Lake Tabernacle on Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah.
The Bells on Temple Square, a hand-bell choir of 28 musicians, enhances the concerts and recordings of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and performs two hand-bell concerts in the Tabernacle each year.
Some of the most enjoyable and uplifting experiences that I have had after moving to Salt Lake City have been at these rehearsals or performances. Which reminds me, they rehearse weekly, on Thursday from 7:30 to 9:30 PM and those performances are also open to the public. When you come you just don’t want it to end.
I share now two videos, a couple of my favorite performances.
Come Thou Font of Every Blessing
David Archuleta and the Mormon Tabernacle Choir – A Wondrous Christmas