Something eclectic is coming to the scene where the second rise of Methodism once occurred.
The Trinity Sanctuary Concert series at Trinity United Methodist Church begins Jan. 23 with an opry acoustic night featuring The Accomplices, The Train Wrecks and City Hotel.
Over the course of the year, organizers of the series plan to host musicians and songwriters of folk, jazz, blues, pop, cabaret, classical, alternative and traditional country.
"I think if we're pushing for anything, it's to make it rather wonderfully eclectic," said Trinity pastor Enoch Hendry. "We're beginning this with some Americana influence. I can imagine it becoming something that would include bluegrass and jazz, as well."
The church is set to host one such event each month. Separate from the series, the church will begin offering a Lenten Noon Recital series this spring.
"The idea of oprys back in the day were ways for a concert to happen that was family-friendly and a place for people to see music that wasn't necessarily late night at a bar," said music director Jared Hall. "But also something focused on talent from the area or traveling talent."
Centered around old school microphones, Thursday's event is part of a larger push for more involvement within the local music scene beyond what the church has done for the Savannah Music Festival each year when it hosts a litany of shows.
"Thursday night is going to be pretty amazing. We're gonna see banjos and guitars and fiddles and accordions," Hall said.
"For people that are fans of these bands, I think it will be a great way to see their talents in a different way."
The progressive, Americana musician's appointment as music director in August represents a new direction for the church, one Hendry hopes will represent what they're calling the emerging essence of Trinity.
The efforts will also help with restoration and preservation efforts in the wake of what church members have dubbed the "great fire" of 1991. In 2005, the church received an Award of Excellence from the Historic Savannah Foundation for restoration efforts. Funds will help with debt and ongoing maintenance.
The series also aims to bring another alternative, family-friendly, non-denominational venue to Savannah.
"It's the church saying we want to provide a venue to bring this concert series here," Hall said. "It welcomes people of all denominations and all religions, or no religions."
Hall's experience as a seasoned touring musician and current band member of Velvet Caravan, along with his work with churches in the past, made him the obvious candidate.
"He's a remarkable young man and has already been a gift to our music program," Hendry said. "He is sort of able to bridge the church and community aspects of what we're trying to accomplish in some really wonderful ways."