The Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square are commemorating 90 years of the weekly broadcast, “Music & the Spoken Word,” with a special worldwide broadcast. The pre-recorded program, “Music for a Summer Evening: Celebrating 90 Years of Broadcasting,” will first air on Saturday, July 18, 2020, at 7:00 p.m. Mountain Daylight Time (MDT).
The 90-minute broadcast will feature interviews and performances with renowned guest artists who have previously appeared with the Choir.
The Choir and Orchestra have selected special performances of their most beloved music under the baton of conductors Mack Wilberg and Ryan Murphy. In addition, the five Tabernacle organists will be featured with a virtual quintet of The William Tell Overture.
The concert will celebrate the impact and influence of the Choir’s weekly broadcasts — which span nearly the entire lifetime of radio — on audiences around the world.
“Music is an international language — sacred music in particular,” explained Bishop Gérald Caussé, Presiding Bishop of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and adviser to The Tabernacle Choir organization. “When the Choir sings, there is no language anymore. There are no borders. Music is a way for the Church to reach out to all the world, all people, and communicate with them from the heart.”
During the COVID-19 pandemic, weekly live broadcasts of the Choir and Orchestra have been replaced by selected encore episodes of “Music & the Spoken Word” on radio, television, cable and the internet.
The commemorative concert will be available worldwide on the following broadcast and internet channels: TheTabernacleChoir.org, The Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square YouTube channel, Broadcasts.ChurchofJesusChrist.org and Latter-day Saint Channel. It will also be available to those using the Alexa Choir skill for Amazon devices. In addition, fans can watch the concert on BYUtv, BYUtv.org and the BYUtv app on Sunday, July 19, at 5:00 p.m. MDT.
The special performance replaces the Choir and Orchestra’s annual July concert, usually held in conjunction with community-wide Pioneer Day celebrations. The pre-recorded program was originally planned because the Choir and Orchestra anticipated being on tour in July 2020. Even though the 2020 Choir tour has been postponed and community Pioneer Day celebrations have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the pre-recorded 90th anniversary celebration will still air on schedule. (The 2021 Heritage Tour will take place in the same cities and countries as originally planned for 2020.)
Once the current health restrictions end, the Choir, Orchestra and Tabernacle organists plan to continue their weekly tradition of broadcasting “Music & the Spoken Word” live to a global audience.