John Brown University Music & Theatre Blog

Welcome to the John Brown University Music & Theatre Blog. On this site you can stay up to date with the latest events happening within the department. This is a place where faculty and students are able to post allowing you to have a more in-depth look into the life of current JBU music & theatre students. Here they will share about their experiences in the department, and give you a “behind the scenes” look at all of the exciting things going on here in the John Brown University Music & Theatre Department. We are excited that you’ve found our site, and we hope you enjoy reading about what we have been doing!
 
If you would like more information about John Brown University you can click on the button below to visit the university’s main web page.

A Call to the Lionhearted

By | Leadership, Music, Theology, Worship Arts | No Comments

BeBrave

A blank page is a beautiful thing, don’t you think?

It’s fresh, opportunistic, and challenging. It’s a space that’s capable of becoming anything.

Okay, maybe a blank page doesn’t always seem so exciting–at least, not to me. But, it’s my suspicion that I’m not alone in ever having felt intimidated by a blank page.

Does a blank page, with its blinking cursor or its empty blue lines, look overwhelming to you?

Does it look like the song that you’ve held in your mind for years but never transcribed? Does it look like the paper that you have to write by tomorrow, but feel incapable of finishing? Does the intimidating blankness look like all the things you’ve wanted to write and accomplish, but have never felt capable enough to complete, or even start?

No ability. No talent. Mediocre.

Perhaps your self-criticism swirls endlessly in your mind, and all the while that cursor blinks at you–no words on its left side, no ideas on its right side.

Blink. Blink. Blink.

Perhaps you echo it with words confirming your self-doubt.

“I can’t.” “I can’t.” “I can’t.”

And perhaps, by simply looking at that blank page, you become increasingly aware that you’re not good enough.

You’re not capable enough.

You are worthless. 

And, isn’t it that continual rejection that we fear? We fear seeing our own inadequacies on paper, in black and white. We sit in that fear, marinate in it, and do anything to escape it, including sliding the mouse to the “X” at the top corner of the page, shutting down the computer program, crumpling up the paper, and avoiding the notion to write anything at all.

Do you want to know something strange? Every successful songwriter, novelist, playwright, or poet that I have ever studied has had trouble writing. But, the more I think about it, the more I realize that it really doesn’t seem strange at all that most writers struggle with writing.

You see, I’ve found that writing is more about courage than ability. You might think that you are incapable of writing that song, lyric, script, or novel.

But I think you’re wrong.

It is my sincere conviction that you do, in fact, have the ability to write–and not just write, but create–beautiful things.

William Wordsworth once said, “Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart.”

Allow your heart to overflow onto the words of your blank page. They don’t have to be well-constructed words; they must only be authentic words. 

You see, we all have very important stories, memories, and experiences to share–stories that come so naturally to our minds and hearts that they feel as simple as breathing. And this, dear friend, is where you must begin–have the courage to breathe in and breathe out the things of your heart.

One of my favorite moments in the children’s novel The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian is when Aslan, the mighty and gentle ruler of Narnia says to Susan, “You have listened to fears, child. Come, let me breathe on you. Forget them. Are you brave again?”

You have listened to fears, child.

Be unafraid. Be vulnerable enough to expose yourself to failure and rejection in the exchange of speaking things that simply must be heard.

And may the things that we speak be uttered in praise to the Lord.

It is time to inhale the breath He has given to you, and let it make you brave, once more.

It’s Your breath in our lungs
So we pour out our praise
Pour out our praise to You, only

Pick up your guitar.
Place your fingers on the keys.
Put your pen to the paper.

Breathe in, and be brave.

 

– Chelsea

“Great Are You Lord” – All Sons and Daughters
© 2012 Integrity’s Alleluia! Music

By | Music, Theology, Worship Arts | No Comments

Great I Am

The mountains shake before Him
The demons run and flee
At the mention of the name, “King of Majesty”
There is no power in hell
Or any who can stand
Before the power and the presence of the Great I Am

“Great I Am” – New Life Worship
© 2003 RE:ZOUND

 

In Glorious Day

By | Music, Theology, Worship Arts | No Comments

In Christ Alone

There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ

“In Christ Alone” – Keith Getty and Stuart Townend
© 2001 Thankyou Music

Lead Me to the Cross

By | Liturgy, Music, Theology, Worship Arts | No Comments

Lead Me to the Cross
Maundy Thursday marks three key events in Jesus’ last week: his washing of his disciples’ feet, his institution of the Lord’s Supper, and his new commandment to love one another. The name “Maundy Thursday” comes from the Latin mandatum novum, referring to the “new commandment” Jesus taught his disciples.

As we get closer to Easter Sunday, may we reflect on what it means to love and serve others as Christ has loved and served us.

Rid me of myself, I belong to You
Lead me, lead me to the cross

“Lead Me to the Cross”
© 2006 Hillsong Publishing

 

Hello, my name is Chester…

By | Chester, Music, Music Education | One Comment

Hi! My name is Chester Wubbena, and I am the mascot and therapy dog for the Music & Theatre Department at John Brown University. I am around four years old, a Corgi mix, and I was adopted from the local animal shelter two years ago by Jan and Terri Wubbena, teachers here in the music program at JBU. I LOVE coming to JBU; the students LOVE me coming to JBU; and I provide a very important service. I go to classes when there is going to be a test. Hanging out with me in the first few minutes of class helps to lower their blood pressure and their stress level. I really believe I help them relax and better concentrate on what they are doing!! I put smiles on the faces of everyone I meet, because I am always smiling.

Life in the Department of Music & Theatre is always busy. Something is always being prepared – the freshman drama production, Homecoming Showcase, music for the Gathering on Sunday nights, the musical theatre production, Candlelight – and the list goes on. But things are never so busy that there isn’t time to talk, to visit, and to share with each other what is going on in our lives.

From time to time, you may hear more from me. It will be an honor for me to give you a dog’s perspective on what it is like to be in the Department of Music & Theatre! And, if you are ever on campus and want to brighten your day (and mine), come see me. I’m most always in my dad’s office.

God I Look to You

By | Leadership, Music, Theology, Worship Arts | No Comments

God I Look to You (circle)James 1:5
“If any of you is lacking in wisdom, ask God, who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly, and it will be given to you.”

This Tuesday in chapel, guest speaker Hadden Wilson challenged us to ask for the wisdom of God and not of the world so that we may better lead and love others.

God I look to You
You’re where my help comes from
Give me wisdom

You know just what to do…

May we seek wisdom in all circumstances.

© 2010 Bethel Music