St James

 Muncy, PA


Sunday Eucharist

Preludes begin 9:50 am


Fitzwilliams Quartet Visit

Muncy, PA January 23rd, 2017

Story by Brian Hess, St James Webmaster/Historian

Dr. Jackson Hill and FSQ public relations also contributed to this piece.

Britain’s world-renowned ensemble the Fitzwilliam String Quartet will perform a concert at Saint James Episcopal Church in Muncy, Sunday, February 5, at 2:00 p.m.  The quartet, which was founded at Cambridge University in 1968, is famous for its performances and recordings of the string quartets of Dmitri Shostokovich, with whom they worked closely in England and in Russia.  The quartet is also celebrated for its performances using period instruments.

For more than fifty years, the Fitzwilliam String Quartet is among the longest established string quartets in the world.  The current line-up combines founding member violist Alan George with a new generation of performers: violinists Lucy Russell and Marcus Barcham-Stevens, and cellist Heather Tuach.  International recognition came early for FSQ, as the first group to record and perform all fifteen of Shostakovich's string quartets, drawing on the players' personal connection with the composer.  Today, the FSQ performs a wide and diverse range of music from the late 17th century to the present day.  It remains one of the few quartets to play on both historical and modern instrument set-ups and has brought over 50 new works to the repertoire.

The FSQ has performed regularly across Britain, Europe, North America, the Far East, and Southern Africa, as well as making many award winning recordings for Decca, Linn, and Divine Art Records.

The Muncy program will be an all-Schubert concert, including the String Quartet in D minor “Death and the Maiden,” and the Quartettensatz in C minor. With free admission, this is a rare opportunity to see some of the finest musicians in the world in a wonderfully intimate and acoustically appealing pre-Victorian/Civil War Era Gothic revival church designed by Richard Upjohn.


Fitzwilliams Quartet Visit 2017
Muncy, PA January 23rd, 2017

Story by Brian Hess, St James Webmaster/Historian

 Britain’s world-renowned ensemble the Fitzwilliam String Quartet cancelled their event quite suddenly due to a personal emergency that required one of their members to return to England on the earliest possible flight. St James Church sends its prayers and support to this member and wishes her safe travels.

However, the show must go on! Dr. Jackson Hill, organist and music director, Brian Hess, Instrumentalist and vestryman, and Brie Myers, violinist and daughter of Marcus and Jennifer Myers of Muncy, put together  a feature concert of music! About sixty visitors from Muncy, Williamsport, Bloomsburg, Lewisburg and other surrounding hamlets were in attendance to the concert, and despite the disappointment that the FSQ was unable to play, were entertained by St James' musicians. 

The revised program began with an organ prelude, duets with the Bass, Tenor, Alto and Soprano recorders (Hess) and organ accompaniment (Hill). Music included pieces from the baroque and romantic periods of music.

Brie, 10 years old, is becoming a well-groomed violinist and was showcased by a Handel minuet, transcribed by Hess as a duet for German Flute and Violin as it is found in a long out-of-print R. Bremner compilation of classical music published in the early 1740s. Hess plays a Meyerflute, a simple system German Flute made popular before Boehme Flutes were invented and standard. Made circa 1805, it is an instrument of antiquity. Listeners heard a rendition of this famous Handel minuet as it would have been heard in the days of its debut. 

Dr. Hill then played a series of organ preludes, soon followed by several Irish Flute pieced performed by Hess.

The finale was a wonderfully obscure, dark organ piece performed by Dr. Hill.

St James is blessed to have a fine pool of musicians to add to the splendor of our worship services, presented to the Glory of God. Plans are in the works for more of these performances throughout the year as it opens up our church to the public as an intimate setting for musical artistry.

File Photo: Brie Myers plays her violin during services with her father, Marcus, playing ukulele, and Brian, playing German Flute. Photo credit: Jennifer Meyers, her mother. 

Fitzwilliams String Quartet visited St James Church in 2016 and performed for visitors for a Sunday afternoon concert in the sanctuary. Photo by Jackson Hill