This year I have been learning, or re-learning, how to play the piano. I took piano lessons for a good chunk of my childhood. However, once I moved away from my parents' house I didn't play much. In an effort to help out at church, I decided it would be good to dust off the keyboard. Our gospel choir director teaches piano seminars and restarted one in Osaka this winter. What a great opportunity to learn how to play for church!
This picture is a joint class to prepare for the concert. But, this is our usual set up, keyboards lined up around the room and our director up front. We gather around him for direct teaching and then go back to our keyboards, which we usually share, to practice what he just taught.
In the past 5 months I have learned an amazing amount of information-some of it I understood and some I didn't! Two of my friends from choir also attend. The class is divided into beginners (me) and experienced players (my two friends from choir) and they meet on alternate weeks. If you had time and the desire, you could attend both classes, which I usually did. I figured the more I put into my head, the more would stick.
Yesterday, May 30, was our concert/recital. 26 of the 29 members were able to attend and play. Since everyone is learning to play for the purpose of accompanying a gospel choir or at church, we basically had a 3 hour praise and worship time. My voice is a little tired today! It was a wonderful time!
I chose "You are My All in All" to play for the concert. (Pretty much the only song I can play right now:) Tomoko Shimada, from AGC, sang the verses in English. The choir sang the chorus and then the whole thing in Japanese.
After the concert, two friends from choir who came to sing and one of the friends from choir who also is learning piano and I went out for dinner and dessert. One of the ladies is a Christian and the other two are listening to Jesus knock on their hearts' doors. We had great conversations!
(I still haven't figured out which flash setting to use on my camera in that kind of lighting so the pictures didn't turn out all that good. Therefore, I only included one picture from the concert.)
**Update: The lady who stopped by the church last Thursday came to Bible study on Wednesday night and is planning to come back again!