Church News - The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Tabernacle concert is prototype of what stakes might present

Published: Saturday, May 17, 1997

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Highlighting 150 years of "Faith in Every Footstep," the Pioneer Sesquicentennial Concert brought together scores of vocalists, musicians, dancers and readers May 3 in the Salt Lake Tabernacle.

Presented as a prototype concert for similar events that might be put on in stakes of the Church to observe the sesquicentennial, the concert was sponsored by the Temple Square Concert Series Committee and the Sesquicentennial Committee.A combined choir from the Salt Lake Olympus, East Millcreek, East Millcreek North and Canyon Rim stakes, conducted by Bonnie Winterton, were among featured performers, as was the Nauvoo Band, composed of performers from the Mormon Symphony.

Vocal soloists, a brass quartet, the International Children's Choir from Salt Lake City, and family square dancers rounded out the entertainment. It compared the pioneers of 1846-47 with those of today, focusing on the element they have in common, faith in Christ.

Narration tied the elements together, with readings taken from journals and writings from pioneers and others. Actors presented live vignettes, and visual illustrations were projected on the walls on either side.

Musical selections included "Come, Come, Ye Saints," "Valley Home" from the classic musical "Promised Valley," "Hosannah Anthem" frequently sung at temple dedications, and the hymn composed by K. Newell Dayley expressly for the sesquicentennial, "Faith in Every Footstep."

On the director's cue, the capacity audience in the Tabernacle sang three hymns: "High on the Mountain Top," "The Spirit of God" (during the "Hosannah Anthem") and "Carry On."

The latter hymn was sung near the end, as youth carrying flags of many nations filled the aisles and rostrum of the tabernacle. A high point occurred when several modern-day pioneers - converts from different nations - each bore testimony of the gospel.

A brief outline of the program was sent earlier to each stake in the Church for possible local adaptation.