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 – April 8th, 2022

Spring time is when the earth awakens anew.  With all the wonders of nature—birds singing, colors emerging, the promise of warm weather—all raise our spirits.  “Awakening” is our theme for April and the word suggests both looking back as in a revival of interest in...

Musically Speaking – March 2022

“Renewing our Faith” is the theme for March.  This week, I found myself wanting to answer Reverend Sophia’s challenge to answer the question posed to us in her homily on March 6th:  “What is Faith?  What do you have Faith in?”  I know that Faith means something...

Musically Speaking – February 11th, 2022

As I think of “Widening the Circle” as our theme for the month, I find it is just about perfect for me right now.  I love hearing that pandemic numbers are going down, enabling us to begin our return to hybrid worship.  Last night, we had a hybrid Vespers that was...

Musically Speaking – January 14th, 2022

Welcome New Year! Each month, I like to present myself as a ray of hope and light.  I like to be uplifting with new ideas for music to make you smile throughout the month.  This month, that is not so easy.  We have rightfully and temporarily pulled back to virtual...

Musically Speaking – December 10, 2021

“Opening to Joy” is the theme of worship for December.  Music does fit right into this!  What is more wonderful than music?  Some of my most memorable oboe playing is at the holiday season.  There are pieces by Bach (Christmas Oratorio) and Handel (The Messiah), many...

Music Calendar

Choir Rehearsal

Thursday February 09, 2023
7:00PM - 8:30PM

February’s theme: Love. Music will be: If You Want to Go, Let the Life I’ve Lived We sing at the on Giving Sunday February 26th service.


Choir Rehearsal

Thursday February 16, 2023
7:00PM - 8:30PM

February’s theme: Love. Music will be: If You Want to Go, Let the Life I’ve Lived We sing at the on Giving Sunday February 26th service.