Choral Workshops

A guide to selecting your workshop

Choosing the correct level is vital to each participant’s success at the BC Sacred Music Symposium. The most important part of selecting your level is your note-reading ability. Consider the phrase of music below and choose the answer that describes you best.

  • “I’ve never learned to read notes.” Choose Beginner.
  • “I understand the basics of how music notation works, but the notes don’t help until I’ve heard it a few times.” Choose Beginner.
  • “If I could hear it first, the notes would make sense to me. Then I could sing it mostly correctly with the help of my section.” Choose Intermediate.
  • “I could probably sing that mostly correctly even without hearing it first – but not by myself!” Choose Advanced.
  • “I could sing that correctly, by myself, even without having heard it before.” Choose Professional.We are also offering a class focused only on Gregorian chant this year for singers who already have some choral experience.

    Course Descriptions

    Beginner’s Workshop

    The beginner’s workshop will focus on the basics of singing, including tone, tuning, pronunciation, and note reading. Repertoire will include unison singing, simple chant, and easy choral pieces.

    Possible repertoire: Adoro te devote, ICEL chanted mass setting

    Intermediate Workshop

    The intermediate workshop will focus on refining the basics of choral singing: improving tone, ensemble, and expression. Repertoire will include simple to intermediate chant and choral works.

    Possible repertoire: Kyrie IX, Mozart: Ave Verum Corpus

    Advanced Workshop

    The advanced workshop will focus on advanced choral and chant work: intermediate motets and intermediate to advanced chant, as well as some conducting and leadership training.

    Possible repertoire: Introit chants, Byrd: Ave Verum Corpus

    Professional Workshop

    The professional workshop is for very experienced singers who sight-read new music confidently. Advanced motets and difficult chant will be learned with excellent ensemble and dynamics, with a focus on conducting and group leadership.

    Possible repertoire: Gradual and Alleluia verses, 5- and 6-voice motets

    Chant Immersion Workshop

    The chant workshop is for singers with at least some choral and note-reading experience, who want to learn more about chant. The class will cover the history, practice, and categories of Gregorian chant, including liturgical use and some instruction on leadership.
    Appropriate for intermediate- and advanced-level singers.

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