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Special musical services planned by local churches

Our Savior Lutheran, Lynnewood Methodist hosting performances

Two local churches will present special musical services in the coming weeks.

The Christi Crux Vocal Ensemble of Concordia University in Portland, Ore. will present a free concert at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 25, at Our Savior Lutheran Church in Livermore.

The group is a select vocal ensemble whose members are chosen from the Concordia University Concert Choir, under the direction of Kurt Berentsen.

This vocal chamber-ensemble makes approximately 30 musical presentations each year in various churches in the Pacific Northwest and on the Concordia campus with the concert choir. Repertoire for the ensemble includes a wide variety of music written for vocal chamber ensembles.

The Livermore church is located at 1385 South Livermore Ave., just south of the Livermore Public Library and Civic Center.

Then on Saturday, April 5, Lynnewood United Methodist Church in Pleasanton will offer special Lenten concert in original German.

Bay Area Classical Harmonies (BACH) will perform sacred music at the church starting at 7 p.m.

The concert will include two full cantatas and a motet by J. S. Bach. Andrew Chung will conduct the chorus, orchestra and soloists, including Sepp Hammer (bass-baritone) and Michael Kim (tenor).

Chung is the founder and conductor of BACH, a group of young musicians in the Bay Area. Sepp Hammer is a graduate of Livermore High School and UC Berkeley who went on to study voice at the New England Conservatory and sings classical music in the Bay Area.

The music will be sung in the original German with written translations in the program. "Himmelskönig, sei willkommen" uses the text for Palm Sunday, written by Bach for his church in 1714. "Christ lag in Todes Banden" was composed by Bach for Easter, 1707.

Music aficionados said this is a rare opportunity to hear Bach's music performed in a church as it would have been performed in the 18th century in Germany during the season of Lent.

Tickets at the door will be sold for $20 for adults and $15 for students and seniors. A reception will follow the concert with an opportunity to greet the performers.

Lynnewood Methodist is located at 4444 Black Ave. in Pleasanton. For more information, call the church office at (925) 846-0221 or email office@lynnewood.org/

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