Matt Woods takes reins of Territorial Youth Chorus.
by Joy Lee and Neil Smith –
The Territorial Music Department has announced a new leader for the Territorial Youth Chorus (TYC)—Matthew Woods, divisional music director for the Northwest Division and an excellent vocalist.
“This appointment was not made lightly and after prayerful consideration I knew Matt was the right choice. He is an able musician and enjoys a good rapport with this age. He will be a fine musical leader, as well as a good Christian example,” Territorial Music Secretary Neil Smith said.
The chorus gathered for the first time under their new director on Nov. 6-8. Woods challenged the youth to high musical standards and Christian excellence through his approachable yet driven leadership style. He hopes to build a unique identity distinct from other territorial groups or songster brigades by capturing a youthful spirit in song selection and presentation.
The members responded to Woods and his arduous rehearsal schedule. They were in good spirits the entire weekend, working 14 hours over two days. They rehearsed on Friday and Saturday, learning 15 new songs ranging from Army classics such as “Reflections” (Norman Bearcroft) and contemporary Christian songs such as “When I Think of You” (Michael W. Smith) and Coldplay’s “Fix You.”
On Saturday evening, members attended the Connect Conference at Cottonwood Church where Israel Houghton led worship and Paul Scanlon challenged listeners to connect with their community in everyday settings. This experience was a positive opportunity to worship and learn as a group.
On Sunday, the TYC worshiped at the Long Beach Temple in conjunction with Decision Sunday. There was standing room only. Attendees experienced God’s love for them through the singing and ministry of the Youth Chorus.