Monday, February 27, 2012

Something new at the Sacred Music Colloquium

We are doing something different this year at the Sacred Music Colloquium XXII,  held at the remarkable Cathedral of the  Madeleine in Salt Lake City, Utah, June 25-July 1, 2012.

Too often, liturgical music has been regarded as the preserve of specialists. If you are not a musician, it is often thought that you have nothing to do with it: no need for knowledge or training. This attitude creates serious problems because decision makers in parish life need to know about the musical demands of the Roman Rite, just as musicians need to know more about the liturgy than just its musical aspects.

When putting together the structure of this program, we decided to take on this canard that music is for musicians only, and make the Colloquium something anyone interested in Catholic liturgy (or just Catholicism generally!) would be happy to attend. You do not need to  regard yourself as a singer or even a musician. There are  plenty of Gregorian choirs for first-time singers, and sessions are  available for those who opt not to sing in a polyphonic choirs - but you don't have to be able to read music at all. There  will be opportunities for both professional musicians and non-musicians who are just interested in the well-being of music at liturgy.

The hope is that this change will broaden the scope and increase the attendance, perhaps even removing completely that intimidation factor that has created artificial barriers between the loft, the nave, and the sanctuary. 

The venue of the Cathedral in Salt Lake is beautiful beyond  description. Historically significant as well as aesthetically  magnificent, the Cathedral of the Madeleine ranks among the finest  locations ever made available for the Sacred Music Colloquium, which has  grown in size in scope every year for six years.

The year 2012 promises to be the grandest ever with new  opportunities for learning, singing, listening, and interacting with the  best minds and musicians in the Catholic world today. The Cathedral  Choir School has been wonderfully accommodating and opened up the full  use of its facilities for the Colloquium.

You will have the opportunity to see how the Choir School functions,  experience the amazing acoustic of the Cathedral, study under the best  conductors and intellectuals in the entire Catholic music world, and  form new friendships that you will value for years to come.

The primary focus of the Colloquium is instruction and experience in  chant and the Catholic sacred music tradition, participation in chant  choirs, daily and nightly lectures and performances and daily  celebrations of liturgies in both English and Latin. You are there not  merely as an attendee but as an integral part of the greatest music you  will ever experience. It will will touch your heart and thrill your  artistic imagination.

Attendance is open to anyone interested in improving the quality of  music in Catholic worship. Professional musicians will appreciate the  rigor, while enthusiastic volunteer singers and beginners new to the  chant tradition will enjoy the opportunity to study under an expert  faculty. Those who choose not to sing at all but merely want to learn  will find a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to absorb the full ethos of a  world of the best liturgical music.

Do you want to make this trip your family vacation? There are so many  things so see and do in the Salt Lake City area.

Once registered, there is no required sign up for individual choirs,  scholas, or breakout sessions. Attend as suits your needs.

  • Extensive training in Gregorian chant under a diverse and world-class faculty,  with choices of a chant class for beginners, and intermediate and and  advanced chant classes;
  • Morning and afternoon sessions all week with lectures and workshops  with the best of the best thinkers and doers in the world of Catholic  music;
  • Optional choral experience with one of four large choirs singing  sacred music of the masters such as Palestrina, Vierne, Bruckner,  Victoria, Byrd, Tallis, Josquin, and many others;
  • Daily liturgies with careful attention to officially prescribed musical settings;
  • Experience in singing or just listening to Mass settings, motets, chants, and responses;
  • Residency in a full service hotel;
  • Two gala dinners with top lecturers and events;
  • Training in English chant from newly published works;
  • Training in vocal production and technique;
  •  Conducting practicum;
  • Training for Priests in the sung Mass;
  • Pedagogy demonstrations;
  • Composers’ Forum;
  • Seminars on parish music management, integrating sung parts of the  liturgy, polyphonic repertoire for beginning and more established  choirs;
  • All music, including prepared packets of chant and polyphony, as part of registration.

Salt  Lake City is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, with some  of the finest dining, mountainous views, and nicest people anywhere.  Under the leadership of the Right Reverend Lawrence Scanlan (1843 –  1915), the first bishop of Salt Lake, the construction of The Cathedral  of the Madeleine was begun in the year 1900 and completed in 1909. On  August 15 of that year, the cathedral was dedicated by Cardinal James  Gibbons of Baltimore. The architects were Carl M. Newhausen and Bernard  O. Mecklenburg.The exterior of the cathedral remains substantially the same today as  it was in 1909. The interior of the cathedral was largely created under  the leadership of The Right Reverend Joseph S. Glass, who became Bishop  of Salt Lake in 1915. A man of refined taste and strong artistic  sensibility, Bishop Glass enlisted the aid of John Theodore Comes, one  of the leading architects in America at the time, to undertake  beautification of the original plain interior. The Comes interior, begun  in 1917, was inspired in great part by the Spanish Gothic of the late  Middle Ages. the colorful murals were added at that time, as was the  dramatic polychrome evident throughout the building. The ornate reredos  shrine of St. Mary Magdalen and the various shrines were notable  features of the Comes renovation. Under the leadership of The Most Reverend William K. Weigand, who was  appointed bishop of Salt Lake City in 1980, a much needed restoration  of the interior, which had suffered the effects of dirt and pollution in  the intervening decades, was planned and executed. The results are on  full display today in breathtaking beauty.

  • Mary Jane Ballou, Cantorae St. Augustine
  • Wilko Brouwers, Monterverdi Choir, the Netherlands
  • Dr. Horst Buchholz, St. Louis Cathedral
  • Charles Cole, Westminster Cathedral; Brompton Oratory
  • Charles Culbreth, Chant Cafe
  • Rudy de Vos, Oakland Cathedral
  • Aristotle Esguerra,
  • Dr. Paul Ford, St. John Seminary; Camarillo, CA
  • Gregory Glenn, Cathedral of the Madeleine
  • David J. Hughes, St. Mary, Norwalk, CT
  • Dr. Ann Labounsky, Duquesne University
  • Dr. Mee Ae Nam, Eastern Michigan University
  • Kathleen Pluth, St. Louis Church, Alexandria, VA
  • Dr. William Mahrt, CMAA President, Stanford University
  • Dr.Jason McFarland, Assistant Editor, ICEL
  • Jeffrey Morse, St Stephen, the First Martyr Church, Sacramento, California
  • Arlene Oost-Zinner, CMAA Programs Director; St. Cecilia Schola
  • Jeffrey Ostrowski, Corpus Christi Watershed
  • Sister Marie Agatha Ozah, Ph.D., Duquesne University
  • Rev. Robert Pasley, CMAA Chaplain; Pastor, MaterEccelsiae, Berlin, NJ
  • Dr. Kurt Poterack, Christendom College
  • Jonathan Ryan, Organist; Jordan Prize Winner
  • Dr. Edward Schaefer, University of Florida
  • Dr. Susan Treacy, Ave Maria University
  • Jeffrey Tucker, Chant Cafe, CMAA Director of Publications
  • Msgr. Andrew Wadsworth, Executive Director, ICEL
  • Dr. Paul Weber, Franciscan University of Steubenville


The Mary Pappert School of Music at Duquesne University   will be extending the option of two hours of undergraduate or graduate  credit to interested Colloquium participants. Dr. Ann Labounsky, chair  of Sacred Music at Duquesne University and internationally known  organist, will be your faculty adviser. Registration and payment  information for undergraduate or graduate credit is provided by Duquesne  Universtiy and payable to Duquesne University. Summer Course Registration Sheet 2012.  If you are interested in obtaining two undergraduate credits, you must  first file a formal application with Duquesne University. For more  details about the application process, please contact Director of Music  Admissions, Troy Centofanto, at  Note that registering for credit at Duquesne is supplemental to  registering for the program with the CMAA through the registration  process outlined below. Any questions concerning Duquesne’s policies  should be directed to Mr. Steve Groves at 1.412.396.6083 or


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