Local Practice Groups are generally organized by participants of MMC events, to get together and practice their singing. You can use this calendar page to set up a new singing event near you, or get in touch with MMC to help you figure out the best way to organize other people in the community to form a local practice group.

Upcoming Events


    Composing Ourselves - Round 2

  • Monday, May 23, 2022 at 12:00 PM
    Zoom


    “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field. I'll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass the world is too full to talk about.” ― Rumi

    Join us for a space to meet and greet our own creativity, exploring creative expansion through playful song-writing. This safe, dynamic, supportive gathering will welcome various creators, within and outside the musical field, to widen and deepen our exploration of creativity and composition. All experience levels welcome. We offer this program in the spirit that our creativity is as physiologically innate to us as our lungs breathing and our hearts beating.

    Every day, we create conversation, plans, projects, making meaning, building meals, sermons, reports, and relationships, yet many of us feel disconnected or estranged from our creative timing and voice. What if we ventured into song-writing and creative expression by way of cultivating rich relationships with ourselves and others, cultivating deepened relationships with our own creative sparks, voices, and timing? Rumi says, “When the soul lies down in that grass the world is too full to talk about,” so let’s sing about it!

    Schedule:
    Session 1: March 21 (12:00- 1:30 pm Eastern Time)
    Session 2: April 4 (12:00- 1:30 pm Eastern Time)
    Session 3: April 11 (12:00- 1:30 pm Eastern Time)
    Session 4: April 25 (12:00- 1:30 pm Eastern Time)
    Session 5: May 9 (12:00- 1:30 pm Eastern Time)
    Session 6: May 23 (12:00- 1:30 pm Eastern Time)

    Registration is on a sliding scale, from $300 to $150 (total) for 6 sessions.

    Register here!

  • Enliven, Envision, Embody

  • Thursday, June 02, 2022 at 06:00 PM through June 04, 2022
    Join St. Paul’s United Methodist Church in Helena, Montana, for a three-day participatory workshop with Paul Vasile and Leah Silvieus. Paul, a visionary leader in music and worship, and Executive Director of Music that Makes Community, and Leah, an author and poet interested in liturgy and language as a touchstone of worship, bring unique gifts for discovering God’s voice through song, word, and movement drawn from many times and traditions. This event is part of the St. Paul’s George Harper Expanding Faith Series, enlivening the church of today and envisioning the church of tomorrow.

    As we continue to navigate the COVID-19 pandemic and its influence on music and worship, we bring our weariness and disorientation as we move forward in a changed and bruised world and church. Yet we still come to God’s table—hungry for the hospitality of welcome, relationship, and interconnection; thirsty for reinvigoration of our imagination and hope.

    Join clergy, music ministers, laity, activists, and artists for three days of generative, embodied music, liturgy, and worship, reconnecting to our voices, our spaces, and our communities, and offering new tools for creating worship infused with genuine care and hope. Anticipating unknowns in COVID safety, this workshop will adapt to evolving guidelines, and may be held entirely outdoors.

    All are welcome to stay for a special worship experience with Paul Vasile and Leah Silvieus on Pentecost, June 5, at St. Paul’s UMC!

    Sliding scale tuition is $60-$100 per participant before May 1; $100-$150 after May 1. Scholarships are also available. Your tuition supports ongoing programs in our George Harper Lecture Series.

    Register here!

    To enroll or inquire about this event, contact Dr. Maren Haynes Marchesini, Director of Worship, Music, & Art at St. Paul’s UMC

    About Paul Vasile
    Paul (he/him) is a church musician, consultant, composer, and teacher who finds his greatest joy in collaborative and community-centered ministry.
    Committed to modeling expansive, imaginative, and hospitable experiences of music making wherever he goes, Paul's leadership builds trust, invites spaces of creativity, vulnerability, and play, and supports practices of reflection and holistic learning. Recognized as a multitalented musician and liturgist, he is helping to strengthen, energize, and liberate faith communities through the ways they worship and sing together.

    With over 25 years of ministry experience in ecumenical contexts, Paul’s skills make him a unique resource to congregations in transition or those experiencing anxiety or conflict. Over the past 8 years, he has accompanied communities with a range of challenges through seasons of discernment and transformation.

    As the Executive Director of Music that Makes Community, Paul is passionate about modeling and sharing leadership practices that sustain the musical and spiritual life of communities. He mentors and supports an ecumenical network of song leaders across North America who are committed to oral tradition (“paperless”) song leadership practices. Additionally, Paul serves as Director of Music at Eden Theological Seminary in St. Louis, where he invites the community to pray and play through song, collaborating with faculty, staff, and students to curate worship experiences where embodied learning and spiritual formation are prioritized.

    Paul is an inspiring teacher and has been a guest lecturer and worship leader at Baylor University, The Candler School of Theology, General Theological Seminary (NYC), the Yale Institute of Sacred Music, Princeton Theological Seminary, Union Theological Seminary (NYC), and Vanderbilt Divinity School. He has also curated notable concert series, arts events, and educational programs exploring the intersection of music and spirituality. He has led a Hymn Festival for The Hymn Society in the United States and Canada, as well as a workshop for the Christian Congregational Song Conference in Oxford, England.

    Committed to expressing and exploring faith in new ways, Paul composes sacred music that expands and enriches the church’s language of praise and prayer. His music is represented in Glory to God, All Creation Sings, and Voices Together, as well as The Hymn Society resource, Songs for the Holy Other. Through a long association with the international theater collective Compagnia de' Colombari, he has also composed and arranged music for innovative, site-specific performances that juxtapose and blend cultures, traditions, and art forms to bring fresh interpretation to the written word. For the last decade he has collaborated with Artistic Director Karin Coonrod in the creation of Judith, a chamber opera inspired by the Old English telling of a story from the Apocrypha.

    For more about Paul, please visit his website.

    About Leah Silvieus
    Leah (she/her) was born in South Korea and adopted to the U.S. at three-months old. She grew up in small towns in Montana’s Bitterroot Valley and western Colorado. She is the author of Anemochory (Hyacinth Girl Press), Season of Dares (Bull City Press), Arabilis (Sundress Publications) and co-editor with Lee Herrick of the poetry anthology, The World I Leave You: Asian American Poets on Faith and Spirit (Orison Books).

    She is a recipient of awards and fellowships from Kundiman, The Academy of American Poets, and Fulbright and serves as a mentor on The Brooklyn Poets Bridge. A 2019-2020 National Book Critics Circle Emerging Fellow, Leah serves as a senior books editor at Hyphen magazine and an associate editor at Marginalia Review of Books. Her reviews and criticism have appeared in the Harvard Review Online, The Believer, and elsewhere.

    She holds a BA from Whitworth University, an MFA from the University of Miami, and an MAR in Religion and Literature at Yale Divinity School/Institute of Sacred Music. She splits her time between New York and Florida working as a yacht chief stewardess.

    For more about Leah, please visit her website.
  • Brunswick Practice Group

  • Tuesday, June 07, 2022 at 06:30 PM
    Zoom

    A Practice Group has been gathering in Brunswick, Maine over the past years, first in-person and currently online. Here's a little description of their practice:

    Join us for an hour of singing together. For fun, not performance! Paperless singing, simple songs to deepen our spirits. Come just to sing, or bring a song to share if you like. All are welcome! We’ve been enjoying having a little more audible harmony using a looper for parts!

    Here's the Zoom link for those who would like to join us the first Tuesday of every month.

  • Sing Freedom, Sing Healing: Building Embodied Anti-Racist Culture through Song

  • Monday, June 20, 2022 at 01:00 PM
    7400 Woodlawn in Seattle, WA

    Join us as Juneteenth and the Summer Solstice converge for an afternoon of singing, listening, and recommitment to the work of building anti-racist culture. Facilitated by Paul Vasile from Music that Makes Community in collaboration with local song leaders and healers, we'll:
    - explore embodied practices that anchor our bodies and support the mending of white-body supremacy and racialized trauma
    - share songs that help us hold intentions for healing and right relationships with BIPOC and Indigenous kin
    - recommit to reparative work we're called to do individually and communally
    Registration for the half-day workshop is on a sliding scale, from $50 to $80. We invite you to pay what is generous and affordable with gratitude for the time and skill of our facilitators. No one will be turned away.
    We are grateful to partner with 7400 Woodlawn to offer this event. A repurposed church building being transformed for the sake of community, they are gathering partners and offering community-building programming in the Green Lake neighborhood of Seattle.
  • One-Day Workshop in Oregon

  • Saturday, June 25, 2022 at 09:00 AM


    After a two-year wait, Music that Makes Community is excited to visit Western Oregon for a One-Day Paperless Music Workshop at The Episcopal Church of the Resurrection in Eugene.

    We’ll gather on Saturday, June 25, from 9 am to 4:30 pm for a renewing day of singing, learning and fellowship. During our time together we’ll:

    • Explore a practice of paperless singing leadership grounded in a theology of welcome and generosity
    • Engage in prayer through congregational music teaching and leading
    • Experience music reflective of the growing diversity of our communities and celebrating our rich liturgical tradition 

    Clergy, music directors, lay leaders, and those who love to sing are warmly welcomed. Each person will leave with new music to offer in their congregation, as well as experiences of learning and teaching songs that are directly applicable to worship, formation, and fellowship contexts.

    The event is sponsored by the Liturgy & Music Working Group of the Episcopal Diocese of Western Oregon and generously sponsored by a grant from the Diocese.

    Registration:
    The cost for individuals in the Diocese is $40. The rate for all other participants is $100. The fee includes workshop materials, lunch, and refreshments throughout the day. Scholarship support is available, and we do not want cost to prevent anyone’s participation. Feel free to contact for more information. Register here!

    COVID protocols:
    We will follow the guidelines of the Diocese in place at the time of the event and are taking precautions to ensure the safety and well-being of all participants. The room will be well-ventilated, we’ll take regular breaks, and follow the CDC's best practices for in-person gathering.

    Additional Learning Opportunities: 

    • Intergenerational Community SING on Thursday, June 23 at 7 p.m. PDT
    • MMC facilitators will share musical leadership for the Sunday, June 26 morning liturgy at St. Philip the Deacon Episcopal Church in Portland.

     Reach out for more details!

  • One-Day Workshop in Washington, D.C.

  • Saturday, July 16, 2022 at 09:00 AM
    Church of the Pilgrims in Washington, DC


    Music that Makes Community is excited to offer a One-Day Workshop before the Annual Conference of The Hymn Society. We'll gather at Church of the Pilgrims in Washington D.C. on Saturday, July 16 from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to:

    • sing aural/oral tradition songs from diverse cultures, musical backgrounds, and faith expressions;
    • explore leadership skills that empower you to share song in your context;
    • worship and reflect together, deepening into spaces of listening and empathy;
    • experience how the energy we create through singing affects our human lives.
    Clergy, music directors, lay leaders, and those who love to sing are warmly welcomed. Each person will leave with new music to offer in their congregation, as well as experiences of learning and teaching songs that are directly applicable to worship, formation, and fellowship contexts. 

    The event is generously supported by a grant from the Endowment of Immanuel Presbyterian Church in McLean, VA.

    Registration: 
    The individual registration is $150, which includes workshop materials, lunch, and refreshments throughout the day. 
    Scholarship support is available, and we do not want cost to prevent anyone’s participation. Register here!

    A special rate of $50 is available for up to 20 participants from the National Capital Presbytery (clergy musicians, and lay leaders). Find a link to this special registration rate here. 

    COVID protocols: 
    We will follow the guidelines of the congregation in place at the time of the event and are taking precautions to ensure the safety and well-being of all participants. The room will be well-ventilated, we’ll take regular breaks, and follow the CDC's best practices for in-person gathering. 

Music that Makes Community
[email protected]
(929) 266-4662

55 N. Bompart Avenue, Apt. 25
St. Louis, MO 63119