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Masonic Service Association of North America

Emessay Notes June 2004

Symphonia Masonica

In a historic move, the Board of General Purposes of the Grand Lodge of Alberta has approved the commissioning of George Blondheim and Bernard Zolner, two well known Canadian composers and producers to compose a three movement Masonic symphony called The Symphonia Masonica. This symphony, which is intended to be a musical interpretation of the three degrees of Freemasonry will be performed by the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra at the beautiful Winspear Theatre in Edmonton on June 12, 2004.

George Blondhelm is well known in the North American music scene for his production of the musical scores to some eight different movies including the Hollywood hit The Jewel of the Nile and the Canadian produced box office hit Bye Bye Blues. In television he is known for his production of the music for Da Vinci's Inquest and the Vicki Gabereau Show. George Blondheim and Bernard Zolner recently received worldwide acclaim for their production of the music associated with the NHL's Heritage Classic outdoor hockey game.

The Symphonia Masonica will be a multi media production with Alberta Masons providing a narrative to explain the purposes and principles of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons. A "big screen" is planned so that a continuous collage of images can pass before the audience telling the story of Freemasonry. All the foregoing is intended to accent the accomplished musicians of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra conducted by George Blondheim. Since the performance will be filmed and recorded, a television release and the sale of CD's and DVD's is contemplated after a North American-wide tour is completed.

For those were are interested and able to travel to Edmonton, the tickets, priced at $40 and $60, are available now through the Winspear Centre in three ways:

780-428-1414 (Edmonton local number) 800-563-5081 (Toll Free Number) 
Online at

(Source: Grand Lodge of Alberta News Release)

"Dad" Land - Imperial Potentate

In 2004, DeMolay marks an anniversary fifty years in the making. This year is the 50th Anniversary of Dad Land's term as Imperial Potentate of the Shrine.

In July 1954, "Dad" Frank S. Land attained the position of Imperial Potentate of the Ancient Arabic Order, Nobles of the Mystic Shrine of North America at Atlantic City, New Jersey. The ceremony to honor his election took place in the huge auditorium on the famous boardwalk and consisted of a pageant portraying his life, ideals, and accomplishments. At the conclusion of the program, the jewel of an Imperial Potentate was presented by Senator Stuart Symington of Missouri. Dad Land devoted his year of Shrine leadership to strengthening the Masonic fraternity. He knew that the progress of DeMolay depended on a strong fraternity capable of supplying men of quality to serve as DeMolay chapter advisors.

"New Horizons" was the program Land put into action. The program called for all Shriners to concentrate on giving help to Craft Masonry, beginning with the Blue Lodges and extending through the Scottish Rite and York Rite Bodies. "Masonic Festivals" were established in various jurisdictions to assist the members of the Masonic fraternity in expansion, development, and comprehensive programs. The Ancient and Honorable Guild of the Leather Apron was created as a movement to recruit dedicated and enthusiastic Masons from all walks of life, to encourage them to apply their skills and "know-how" in a campaign to re-emphasize and revitalize the lessons and ideals of Freemasonry.

The active year as Imperial Potentate reached its climax in Chicago, July 13-15, 1955, as Land presided during the Imperial Sessions. He distributed his annual report. "It is there for you to read," Land said to the Nobles. "It has been written on planes and trains and everywhere else. I offer it to you as my address for the stewardship you placed upon me this year." Land's annual report reads as though it had been written just after his election the year before, but shows the idealism of a man rising to the challenge of change.

"Almost by the second-time marches on! Nothing stands still! Everywhere … humanity advances into new eras. It is off with the old, and on with the new, and in each or our own lifetimes, the changes you and I can recall have been both amazing and fantastic. To keep pace … and to assume its share of the leadership responsibility in this terrific thrust forward … is our duty and privilege. But … to keep up with the parade … we cannot rest for a moment on the laurels already won. This would be sheer folly … it would not be faithful to our trust …"

It's as true now as it was then. Now, fifty years later, we honor the man who has such an enormous impact in Masonry as well as DeMolay.

(Source: DeMolay News, March 2004)

MSA is proud to recognize this Honor to "Dad" Frank S. Land and to salute the Order of DeMolay!


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