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Blountville, TN: St. Tikhon Church to host Liturgical Music Symposium in October 2022

As previously announced, St, Tikhon Church in Blountville, TN, in cooperation with the Synodal School of Liturgical Music, will host an English-language Liturgical Music Symposium October 20-22, 2022. The lectures, workshops, and choral practice will pay particular attention to the challenges faced by new and developing church choirs.

The keynote lecture – "Embracing the Spirit of Professionalism in Church Choirs" – will be given by Laryssa Doohovskoy. Laryssa has many years of experience as a musician and voice instructor and has conducted her parish’s choir for almost two decades. She will also be providing hands-on voice instruction for symposium participants in areas such as phonation, resonance, and articulation – all essential in a choir’s ability to be heard and understood.

A workshop on church choir conducting, led by Peter Fekula, will provide instruction in the specific skills needed to direct a church choir, including tips on preparing for rehearsals, dynamics, tempo, etc. Peter Fekula will also lead a workshop together with Archpriest Matthew Williams (rector of the host parish) on "The Order of Divine Services." This workshop will include discussion of liturgical books, the cycles of the liturgical year, and preparation for Sunday, weekday, and festal services.

There will be two workshops on reading in church and the singing of stichera, led by the symposium instructors. Topics will include distinctions in reading style (psalms, epistle, etc.), pointing text for singing, and tips for harmonization (especially with small or imbalanced choirs).

The participants, under Peter Fekula’s direction, will sing the Vespers & Matins services on Friday evening and Liturgy on Saturday morning in honor of the Holy Apostle James the Lesser.

A concluding lecture – "Small/Beginning Choirs and Their ‘Pitfalls’" – will be given by Irina du Quenoy, followed by a panel discussion.

The symposium will open with Vespers at 5:00 PM on Thursday, October 20, followed by refreshments, introductions, and an initial choral practice. Sessions will continue through Friday and Saturday and conclude on Saturday afternoon. Participants are invited to stay in the area for the regularly scheduled weekend services.

Registration is $150 and includes all sessions and meals: www.sainttikhonroc.org/2022_symposium.

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