Pianist to perform at Pokagon churchPublished 10:33pm Tuesday, October 11, 2011
Anthony Beer of South Bend, Ind., a graduate of the Eastman School of Music, will perform sacred, rag and classical music, including a colleague’s arrangement of the hymn, “The Old Rugged Cross,” in a minor key.
The event is part of The Old Rugged Cross Foundation’s (ORCF) “Third Sunday at Three” concert series.
The arrangement “reflects the agony and hope of Christ on the cross,” Beer said, explaining he considers music a universal language and said he hopes his performance will “give some vitamins to people’s souls.”
“I am pleased to be part of The Old Rugged Cross Church’s history,” said Beer, who is an accompanist at Riley High School in South Bend, Ind., and the pianist for Wesely United Methodist Church in Niles.
The concert, at 3 p.m. Sunday at The Old Rugged Cross Church in Pokagon, will support the ORCF’s restoration of the church, where composer Rev. George Bennard, of Albion, introduced his hymn, “The Old Rugged Cross” publicly in its entirety for the first time in 1913.
The final “Third Sunday at Three” concert for 2011 will be on Nov. 20, featuring “Sisters x Two,” a Goshen, Ind., Southern gospel group who last performed at the church in 2009. The group includes two sisters who are vocal performers. One sister’s husband is the duo’s manager and sound engineer.
The ORCF is continuing its monthly Community Hymn Sings on the first Sunday of each month at the church. The next Sing will be 6 p.m. on Nov. 6.
The Dec. 4 Community Hymn Sing, which will focus on Christmas carols, will be the ORCF’s last for 2011.
Hymn Sings feature congregational singing of traditional Christian hymns chosen by those attending.
All of the events are open to the public without charge. The church will open one hour in advance of each event’s start time.
The ORCF is providing an opportunity for donors to support tge creation of replica stenciled, leaded-glass windows similar to the church’s original windows, and replica wooden pews, based on the design of an original pew from the church. The first two replica windows were installed in August; two more will be installed this winter.
A donation of $11,000 or more will support the cost of a window, and $1,000 or more will support construction of a pew. Windows and pews include space for donor recognition or memorial messages.
The Old Rugged Cross Historic Site is at 61041 Vermont St., Pokagon, MI 49047. It is one block south of Pokagon Highway, just east of Highway M-51 (halfway between Niles and Dowagiac). The site includes the half-acre Old Rugged Cross Memorial Garden.
For more information, call (269) 683-4540.
, or PO Box 41, Niles, MI 49120.