The First Parish Church in Taunton is a vibrant, progressive, and diverse Unitarian Universalist congregation whose mission is to inspire spiritual growth, to connect with one another, and to serve the wider community in love. Located in a beautiful historic building in downtown Taunton, MA, we are a highly engaged, urban congregation that loves its untraditional music program. We are looking for a strong musician who can continue the arc of this small but thriving music program. Candidates from the greater Boston and Providence areas are encouraged to apply. The position has the option of being remote except for Sunday mornings. Please continue to explore our website to earn more about our congregation and music ministries
Position Summary: The Music Director collaborates with the Lead Minister, Director of Lifespan Faith Formation (formerly called Director of Religious Education), and laypeople to provide enlivening and inspiring leadership in our music program. The director is responsible for providing a wide variety of music through performing and by leading volunteers. The church services are an hour in length at 10AM, and are 40 weeks per year from Sept. through mid-June, with 2 sick days and 2 personal days/yr. Anticipated start date is 1/1/23. Expected hours vary from 10-15 hours per week with commeasurate competitive salary offered depending on experience, no benefits.
Our Worship: The First Parish Church in Taunton is a Unitarian Universalist congregation that values inclusivity, diversity, and justice. We work with monthly themes for worship, including music, through what is known as the Soul Matters Unitarian Universalist curriculum, https://www.soulmatterssharingcircle.com. Within the congregation, we have people who identify theologically as Agnostics, Christians, Buddhists, Atheists, Pagans, Jews, Muslims, and other religious traditions. We have dedicated vocalists who sing solos, ensembles, and help lead congregational songs, along with a paid drummer and occasional guest musicians. Where many Unitarian Universalist churches use congregational hymns largely based only on the hymnals, our church includes hymns but has developed a congregational repertoire of diverse musical styles. The church owns two beautiful baby grand Steinway pianos and a 1861 E. & G.G. Hook organ that has been fully restored. The original organ was an E & GG Hook, Opus 348,1864. There were total changes done by W.B. Williams in 1914. In 1949 EM Skinner and Company electrified the organ and did some tonal changes. In 1960 the Williams organ Services of Swampscott added a new console and tonal changes. In 1986 the Roche Organ Company rebuilt the entire organ as we have it now.
Essential Functions: • Worship Planning: Collaborate weekly with the lead minister and guest preachers to plan music • Music Selection: Select, prepare and lead music from diverse musical genres in collaboration with the lead minister and other worship leaders • Provide excellent leadership and training as director of the First Parish Taunton vocalists, drummer, and direct or recruit volunteer musicians. Interest and experience in cultivating a children’s choir is welcome. • Volunteer Leadership: Recruit volunteer talent among new congregation members. Manage volunteer performers, music budget, and any paid performers, including drummer. • Vocal leading and/or piano/organ accompaniment: Lead and accompany congregational songs and provide accompaniment for solo and ensemble vocal selections. • Musical Arrangement: Arrange and sometimes transpose songs so that they are more singable for the congregation or vocalists. Excellent ear needed to learn church repertoire. • Special Events & Services: Provide music for Christmas Eve, occasional member Memorial services. Occasional opportunity to perform at weddings for additional income. • Computer/technology skills: Prepare song sheets (lyrics/chords, sheet music arrangements) and vocal learning tracks. Prepare slide show for Sunday morning worship including lyrics. • Spiritual Presence: Lead from a heart-centered and compassionate state of being
Core Competencies: As the main musical leader in the congregation, the Music Director must possess the ability to learn and lead music from diverse musical genres, including but not limited to pop, classical, folk, jazz, R&B, soul, rock, and reggae. Organizational, leadership and technology skills needed to manage the paid and volunteer musicians and budget. The ideal candidate will be interpersonally skillful, highly creative, musically adaptable, and will resonate enthusiasm. The Music Director must demonstrate patience and flexibility when managing volunteer and paid musicians’ schedules.
Minimum Qualifications: • Bachelor’s Degree in Music; Masters Degree preferred • Two years of experience performing and leading vocal music in any setting • Demonstrated excellent keyboard (bonus if also guitar) skills
Physical Requirements: Candidate must be able to move freely around the two separate floors of our church to access the historic organ. We are not fully wheelchair accessible right now. Candidate also responsible for upkeep of the humidification system attached to piano.
First Parish Church in Taunton P.O. Box 614 76 Church Green Taunton, MA 02780 508.822.2107