Monday, November 29, 2010

Introducing our Choir Director, Michael Denton

The Lord leads us in wondrous ways! And I’m thankful that He has led me to Saanich Peninsula Presbyterian Church as your new Music Director. It’s some 10 years since I was a “full-time” Organist and Choir Director. A number of reasons led me to “hang up the organ shoes.” The main one was my shift work when I worked for BC Ferries. I just found it too difficult to have a firm church commitment while trying to juggle a work schedule to satisfy the needs of my job, which frequently took me out of town, often at very short notice.
     So, during the past 10 years I’ve “filled-in” at various churches on an “as needs” basis. And that’s how I came to play at SPPC. I was sent the note about your vacancy through the Royal Canadian College of Organists. I called Dr. Brian Altenkirk and told him that while I wasn’t interested in the position on a “full-time” basis, I was available to provide relief during your search. I’d just finished “filling in” at St. Stephen’s Anglican church in Saanichton, so the timing was good.
     I was very touched by the warm reception I received from the Minister, choir and congregation of SPPC. As time went along, and the Selection Committee wasn’t exactly flooded with applicants, I was asked on more than one occasion if I’d consider applying for the position. So, with the blessing of my wife Jeannie, and because of the warm reception I’ve received from the choir, congregation and Minister, I put in my application.
     I’m delighted to have been accepted and will do my best to carry on the excellent standard of music set by my predecessor.
Advent and Christmas will soon be upon us, and we’ll be singing some old favourites, as well as some new music I’ll introduce. We’re always looking for more singers, especially men, so if you feel you’d like to contribute to the ministry of music, please don’t hesitate to come and speak with me.
     Just one favour to ask of you all. As you know, all organists fall into various categories – and each organist seems to fit into them all. We either play too loudly, too quietly, too quickly or too slowly! Some people enjoy quiet and contemplative music before the service; others say it puts them to sleep! So, I’d appreciate you coming to me directly with any comments and/or suggestions, bearing in mind that one person will never satisfy everyone! But I’ll do my best! I would however appreciate it if you’d come and speak with me. It’s much better than hearing it from others. Please don’t be shy; I don’t bite!
     Thank you for the opportunity to share my gift of music with you all at SPPC!
-- Michael

Michael playing the organ at St. John's


  1. Welcome to you and your Family!
    It sure is good to have you at SPPC.
    Thanks Michael for all you have done so far and we look forward to working and serving with you in the future.

  2. SPPC made a very good choice in selecting my Big Brother to be their Choir Director & Organist. We were both Choristers at Leeds Parish Church, UK, and both followed in the tradition of our Father and Uncles who were all fine musicians. While Michael headed off to Canada in the late 60's I was preparing for my Headship of LPC Choir, following on from Michael's headship, and thereafter enjoyed a distinguished choir and solo career. I wish Michael, and of course you all, every good wish for the future and hope you will continue to share in that most beautiful gift of music. Love to you all, Robert.