In 1992 the LDS Church introduced the Basic Music Course. It is a packet that includes information about conducting music and basic keyboard skills with the Conducting Course manual, the Keyboard Course manual, a Hymns Made Easy simplified hymnbook, a CD of examples, music flashcards, and a cardboard keyboard for practice at home.
I grew up in Utah and knew several people that played the piano that were able to accompany the congregation at Church, whether it be in Sacrament meeting, Young Women’s or Primary. Really, there were several choices when it came time to fill the calling.
Now, still in Utah, I am in a ward with only a handful of piano players (that we know of!) and most of them have already had accompanist callings for 2-4 years and simply needed a break. In the Primary we were stuck when our pianist suddenly moved.
So we turned to this program with a very willing brother that hasn’t played in several years. He is still in the midst of using this program and getting comfortable with the songs, but in the end I think it will be a very good thing for both us and him.
It is amazing the amount of time and preparation that goes into Sunday meetings in all different aspects, but we sing and praise God with music because it is important. And the Church has recognized the fact that it isn’t easy for everyone, so they created this program. And it’s another thing I’m grateful for!
Read more about the program here.