2011 Class Descriptions

General Interest Choral Primary/
Music Theory: Powerfully Moving Music Conducting Principles Primary: Engaging the Whole Child I Organ-izing the Hymns Music Chair Boot Camp
Unlocking the Power of Hymns Choral Reading Primary: Engaging the Whole Child II Organ Q & A Relief Society Music
Vocal Technique for More Beautiful Singing Primary: Tools of the Trade I Accompanying for the Non-telepathic
Ward Choir Reality Primary: Tools of the Trade II Score Preparation and Marking
Ward Choir Rehearsal Music: The Language of Nursery
Youth Choirs
Conducting Master Class

General Interest

Music Theory for Creating Powerfully Moving Music (Emily Spencer)
Join us in discovering the many exciting ways basic music theory principles can be applied to practical, "real life" music-making! Students will examine several of our most beloved hymns and learn how to powerfully enhance their presentation for choirs and congregations alike. Specific areas of exploration will include texture, timbre, and articulation, alternate accompaniments, modulation and transposition, vocal descants, and instrumental obbligatos.

Unlocking the Power of Hymns (Merilee Webb)
Enough said.


Conducting Principles (Emily Spencer)
Join us for fun, hands-on discussion and practice concerning all things conducting: patterns, preps, cues, cut-offs, fermatas, dynamics, phrasing, and articulation, to name just a few! Presented in a clear, concise, and engaging way in order to equip directors with the skills necessary to express their musical ideas clearly. Excellent for all levels, from beginners to those desiring to brush up their conducting technique.

Choral Reading (Denise Erskine)
List of Choral Packet contents
Come enjoy reading a wonderful assortment of choral music appropriate for ward choirs of all levels. The pieces vary in difficulty and price — one is even free! — and come from a variety of resources to provide a wide exposure for choir directors. Don’t forget to order a Choral Packet for this class by registering online. Choral packets are $20 and include all the music we will be singing through.

Vocal Technique for Beautiful Singing (Emily Spencer)
Join us for a fun and fascinating look at how voice science and vocal art join together to produce stunningly beautiful singing! Topics examined will include basic vocal anatomy and physiology, body alignment, phonation, breath management, resonance, and communicative intent, along with exercises for developing skills critical to healthily coordinated, beautiful singing.

Ward Choir Reality: Getting Them to Come (Merilee Webb)
Trying to direct a ward choir is challenge enough – many choir directors are also tasked with the overall management of a choir, including recruitment, retention, schedule management, inventory management, etc. Get tips, ideas, and help for learning how to fill those choir seats, keep your singers coming, remove barriers to participation, get the budget you need and the people to support you.

Ward Choir Rehearsal: How Much Can You Cram Into One Hour? (Merilee Webb)
Once you get people to choir, then what? This class will be a choir, rehearsed by Merrilee Webb. Although every choir director has a unique personality, important concepts remain the same, regardless. People care about how you spend their time and their money; you’ll learn how to give people the most bang for the investment of their time!

Youth Choirs: Not As Scary As You Thought (Merilee Webb)
During this hour Merrilee Webb will take a large group of randomly selected youth – not chosen for their singing ability or skills – and give them an amazing musical experience while turning them into a choral group to be reckoned with – and all in less than an hour! The youth will perform during her closing remarks. Any youth are welcome to participate in the choir – they must register in advance and will be limited to the first 100 registrants.

"Can You See What I’m Saying?" Communicating with Clarity (Porter)
(Conducting Master Class with Cántico, The Portland Chamber Singers)
Did you ever wish that you had a chance to practice conducting with an actual choir responding to your gestures? Here is your chance. How can your conducting gestures tell your choir how you want them to sing? Can the way you stand or hold your arms actually change the sound you get from your choir? How do you make entrances and cutoffs so clear that your choir can’t miss them? Come observe and find out in this master class. The master class material will be "Come to the Stable" by Mary Finlayson (click on the link to print a copy) and "Come Unto Him" by Dan Carter. If you would like to participate as a conductor, email canticosingers@gmail.com.

Primary / Nursery

Engaging the Whole Child I (Sharla Dance)
Primary Music: Engaging the Whole Child, Part 1 – Body, Mind, Heart as preparation to hear the Spirit, Teaching Principles and Techniques that make for not only Successful Music Times, but also Experiences that can lead a child to the Savior. We will be working with Multiple Intelligences, Looking Through Teaching Eyes, Movement as a Necessary part of Learning, and the Flow of not only Singing Time, but of how a child learns. Active, hands on demonstrations, examples of different teaching techniques, and lots of smiling, puzzling, singing, and moving are packed into these sessions.

Engaging the Whole Child II (Sharla Dance)
(See description for Part I) (Submit questions to be answered in sessions 3 and 4, "Tools of the Trade", at this time.)

Primary Music: Tools of the Trade, Part I (Sharla Dance)
What activities work for younger children, but not with older children? How do you make a melody map? How do you make a tone bell chart? What are a variety of activities for the different multiple intelligences? What activities work well for older children so that they feel challenged and engaged at their age level? Maori sticks, windwands, paper plates, rhythm instruments, scarves, bells… when and how do I use these fun props (Do I need them?)? How do you bring the children back to a calm state if you allow them to move? How do I plan out a month of activities at a time? What activities are appropriate for which songs? Let’s discuss (and discover through demonstrations) ways to find answers to these questions and more…

Primary Music: Tools of the Trade, Part I (Sharla Dance)
(See class description for Part 1)

Music: The Language of Nursery (Channing Dane)
From singing time, to snack time, to play time, to clean-up time, to story time, to lesson time, to circle time, music is the underlying voice of Nursery. Come learn ways to engage every age Nursery child, to transition from one activity to the next, to enhance the attention span and effectiveness of your lessons, and to bring the Spirit into Nursery with song. There will be a mock singing time and lesson presented along with an organized booklet of play songs to correspond with almost any nursery activity or theme.


Organ-izing the Hymns (Eric McKirdy)
The duty of ward organist is much more than just showing up on Sunday and playing the hymns! There are several easy ways to approach playing the hymns that will magnify the calling and uplift an entire congregation. This class will focus on an entire sacrament meeting’s worth of music, with practical approaches that can be used by organists of any skill level. Pianists who might one day find themselves at the organ are also strongly encouraged to attend!

Organ Q & A (Eric McKirdy)
We each came to the organ with a unique background and experience level, but there’s one thing we feel in common: there’s a whole lot to know about the organ! This direction of this class will be determined by class participants; bring your questions, and we’ll discuss answers in a roundtable format. No question too large or too small!

Accompanying for the Non-Telepathic (Porter)
"Can You Read My Mind?": Elements of Accompanying for the Non-Telepathic: The word "accompanying" sometimes invokes the image of a less-important "backup" to the soloist or choir. Nothing could be further from the truth– the accompanist can make or break a performance. Accompanists deal with the special challenge of playing their own part and following whatever the soloist does at the same time. This art form sometimes borders on mind-reading. Come brush up on your mind-reading skills and learn how to become one of those accompanists that makes a performance special.

Score Preparation and Marking (Emily Spencer)
Learn how to prepare and mark your scores so you are equipped to run powerful, effective rehearsals! Students will examine several different score-marking methods and learn how to effectively use color-coding, notation, and symbolism to analyze and thoroughly command any piece of music.

Ward Music

Music Chair Bootcamp (2 SESIONS / Eric McKirdy)
This class is for every ward or stake music chairperson, or anyone who might be one at some point. There are important ways that music in the church can be improved and used as a very meaningful catalyst for worship. We’ll discuss innovative ways that the stake or ward music chairperson can work with bishoprics, stake presidencies, and stake/ward music committees to continually develop the talents and resources of each congregation. The class will feature a step-by-step plan which can be used in every stake to raise the level of music and musicality among all members, and therefore increase the amount of worship that can only happen through music.

Relief Society Music (Denise Erskine)
Power pack your music period with variety! We’ll discuss ways to capture the meaningful Relief Society lesson material in a musical way that complements the lesson. Compete with Primary, and make Relief Society the most fun place to be (at least for a few minutes).
NOTE: The most recent edition of the handbook does not specify an amount of time for Relief Society Music, so the amount of time may vary by ward depending on your presidency and what arrangements you make with them.