World Religions series - 2017

globeOn Tuesday evening, May 16, our World Religions series continued with Rev. Molly Cox sharing photos, highlights, and reflections of her recent week in Bethlehem. Her comments about the Holy Land and the current state of Israeli-Palestinian relations were especially interesting.

The church has presented World Religions discussions twice before, in 2015 and 2016. In 2016, a two-part series convened on October 25 with featured speaker Mr. Rashed Ferook from the Islamic Resource Group in Minneapolis. He also spoke in 2015 and was back by popular demand! His discussion provided an overview of Islam, plus information on the religion's history, practices, and beliefs.

Then, on November 29, David Locketz, Senior Rabbi at Bet Shalom synagogue in Minnetonka, spoke to us about Judaism, in particular in comparing Reformed with Orthodox Judaism. He was a most interesting speaker, and the evening was very informative and enjoyable.

Chamber Music Excelsior

wavy music notes 27194297 May 7 brought the second Chamber Music of Excelsior concert of 2017, this time at Trinity Episcopal. Marilyn Zupnik, oboe, Karin Wolverton, soprano, Mary Jo Gothmann, piano and harpsichord, and Mark Seerup, oboe, presented a beautiful program that included a Bach aria for soprano and oboe d'amore, a Handel aria for soprano and two oboes, a trio Sonata by an excellent Swedish baroque composer, Johan Helmich Roman, a 20th century duo for oboe and bassoon, and another soprano aria. Also, Mary Jo Gothmann played some Scarlatti on the harpsichord.

The first concert of the ensemble's 2016-17 season was held at the Congregational Church of Excelsior on Sunday, November 20. The featured musicians were the Arietta  Ensemble, including Marilyn Zupnik and Mark Seerup on oboe, J. Christopher Marshall on bassoon, and Mary Jo Gothmann on piano and harpsichord. What a marvelous time we all had--the music was superb!

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