Music at First Parish of Watertown

When you attend a worship service at First Parish, music is one of the reasons you come back! We want music to engage your body, heart, and soul, and it is always performed live in our sanctuary. Hymn-singing and piano music in many styles are part of our weekly ministry.

Services are often enhanced by guest musicians who come from a wide variety of backgrounds, including Classical, folk, ethnic, world music, some jazz, as well as popular music and music composed by contemporary artists. Those artists are often part of our congregation or friends from the musical community in the Boston area.

The First Parish Choir meets weekly to rehearse, and we sing in a church service once per month. Again, the music we sing reflects a wide variety of styles to uplift both choir members and the congregation. The choir music we sing reflects the UU monthly themes.

Musicians at First Parish often collaborate on their own, which speaks to the huge amount of talent and interest in the arts that exists in our church community. You need only look across the aisle to see someone who might be happy to create something with you for our annual variety show. This was exactly how our First Parish rock n’ roll band began. Now, the band provides and supports the music at select worship services.

Our music directors welcome input from our community about what they want our music program to be. Please feel free to approach us!

Hand in Hand Hospice Singers serve the wider community in Watertown and beyond. Sponsored by First Parish, this group travels to hospice sites to sing for people who are ill or at the ends of their lives, bringing joy and serenity to their days. They rehearse weekly.

Musically Speaking Blog

Updates and reflections from Charlyn Bethell, Music Director

Musically Speaking – September 2023

I write this while visiting my family in the Pacific Northwest  I hope you are still in the same aura of calm as I am even as the summer winds down. We all look forward to being together again as our church season begins anew. Welcome Samantha!! There is much to look...

Musically Speaking – June 9th, 2023

I am delighted to speak about the many generous, hard-working, and creative musicians at First Parish as we close out the church year.  I think of all the music that was presented as worship that helped to make this a transformational year.  I refuse to name names...

Musically Speaking – May 12th, 2023

The great activist, actor and singer, Harry Belafonte, recently died at age 96 (he wrote “Turn the World Around” in our Teal Hymnal).  Belafonte has been and will continue to be important in our lives.  Although he was probably most well-known as a singer and actor,...

Musically Speaking – April 14th, 2023

Resistance Through Music This topic makes me excited looking backward, looking at now, and going forward.  Social movements and resistance have always been propelled with music.  Think of spirituals created and sung by the enslaved people on plantations….their songs...

Musically Speaking – March 10th, 2023

Once again, I find myself in celebration-mode.  At First Parish, have so much to celebrate: We love our minister. We have many new members at First Parish and people are returning to the sanctuary for Sunday Worship services. We reach people who cannot be there on...

Music Calendar

Guy Urban rehearsal

Saturday September 30, 2023
9:00AM - 11:00AM

Hospice Choir Rehearsal

Tuesday October 03, 2023
1:00PM - 2:30PM

Choir Rehearsal

Thursday October 05, 2023
7:00PM - 8:30PM

Hospice Choir Rehearsal

Tuesday October 10, 2023
1:00PM - 2:30PM