Date

4-2011

Degree Name

BA in Music

Department

Music Department

Advisor(s)

Alyson McLamore

Abstract

From the beginning of the Protestant Reformation in the sixteenth century, Martin Luther (1483-1546), German theologian and founder of the Lutheran church, recognized the power of music to convey messages of faith and hope.[1] At a time when the future of the Protestant church was uncertain, music provided the medium of communication needed for a global campaign for Protestantism. The messages of Luther’s hymns survived the Reformation and continue to be used in Christian music of the twenty first century. Through a comparison of five hymns by Martin Luther “Ach Gott von Himmel sieh darein,” “Aus teifer Not schrei ich su dir,” “Nun Freut euch, Lieben Christen G’mein,” “Erhalt uns, Herr, bei deinem Wort,” and “Ein feste Burg ist unser Gott,” and five songs by different contemporary Christian artists, including “Your Love is a Song” by Switchfoot, “Forgiven” by Skillet, “Light Up the Sky” by The Afters, “Hanging On” by Britt Nicole, and “Something Holy” by Stellar Kart, it is evident that these messages of faith have persisted over hundreds of years.

[1]Mark Bonds, A History of Music in Western Culture: The Classical Era through the Present (Upper Saddle River: Prentice Hall, 2010), 99.

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