Workshop Info


Michael is an internationally respected clinician, and has more than four decades of experience conducting and lecturing in over 350 workshops and festivals in 43 states and five Canadian provinces. He served extensively as clinician for the Choristers Guild, American Guild of Organists, American Choral Directors Association, and the Presbyterian Association of Musicians. Michael has the distinction of having served as clinician for the national worship and music conferences of fourteen different denominations in the United States and Canada.

Michael's workshops cover a wide range of choral topics, which can run from approximately one to two hours depending on your needs. With his dynamic energy, positive sense of humor, and his ability to put audiences at ease and presence of mind, learning becomes natural and effective.


Michael has a unique ability to inspire surges of vocal and choral growth in one to two day workshops where he would work exclusively with your choir in your own church, school or community. Included would be an interesting and accessible introduction to better singing in practical language and using analogies which your choir members could understand and use to sing better. An option is to have Michael do a quick voice check (see The Choral Challenge) to suggest some trial changes in voice parts for increased vocal comfort and flexibility as well as better balance between sections. Some choirs prefer the opportunity for every choir member to receive from Michael a mini-voice lesson, sometimes in private but often in front of the other singers. Then, Michael develops these new vocal and choral concepts while working with the choir on their upcoming repertoire. Reaction to such “Choral Booster Shots” from Michael has been overwhelmingly positive, often doubling the sound and igniting fresh inspiration. If you and your choir would like to discuss this possibility with Michael, contact Michael directly. AVAILABLE WORKSHOP TOPICS

  • Practical help for choir directors when preparing to conduct an orchestra
  • In-depth choral and orchestral study of accessible masterworks, e.g. Vivaldi "Gloria", Handel "Messiah" and Haydn "The Creation"
  • Keeping senior voices healthy
  • Practical explanations of often misunderstood common vocal terms
  • 17 common vocal problems and their solutions
  • A practical selection process for choosing choral repertoire
  • The UMF Factor: Determining the "Unique Musical Focus" for each piece of music scheduled for a given rehearsal, so that your approach to each piece in rehearsal is different and fresh
  • Functional warm-ups that teach specific skills (there are 62 new ones in my book, The Choral Challenge)
  • Building healthy choral habits in rehearsals
  • Ideas for energizing rehearsals and other conductor concerns
  • Placing singers into correct voice parts
  • Identifying visual signs of vocal strain
  • How to teach vocal concepts when you don't have a good voice yourself
  • When boys' voices begin to change
  • Score study: Effective procedures for marking and interpretation
  • Motivating your choirs for success
  • Guaranteed recruiting and program building
  • Music reading skills for choirs

Westminster College of the Arts , Princeton, NJ

2 Responses to Workshop Info

  1. Miki says:

    Michael came to our church to do a "choir booster" workshop with our adult choir. It was an excellent workshop that I would recommend to anyone. Michael helped build confidence in the choir and also re-lit some of the excitement that can get forgotten in the middle of the year, especially between Christmas and Easter. The members were thrilled to work with him - he treated them with respect and made the experience fun. Michael has a great way of demonstration to achieve the goal he is working on with the choir. The choir can relate to what he is trying to convey and his suggestions of techniques are do-able and effective. I'm very glad that we decided to do this and I am very pleased with the results.

    I am amazed about what I learned about my choir from the workshop. Things I took for granted that they knew (i.e. hold your music up, look at me from your peripheral) and assumed they had gotten lazy or forgotten - it turns out they never knew them in the first place. There were quite a few things that you taught that later in the week someone would come up and say, "I never knew..." It amazed me. Although, there quite a few times I got that response and all I could think was, "I said the same thing for 5 years." LOL! But, that's why I wanted you to come tell them about those things. I knew hearing it from someone else would help. But, as a director, I got a lot from it, too.
    Thanks, Michael!

  2. Sarah Garcia says:

    Hi Michael,
    I saw you at the workshop today...the room was packed and I got their 5 minutes or so late and all the hand outs were taken. I was grateful that you said to contact you for the information and the power points. I would appreciate the warm up and cool down hand outs. I cannot wait to try them out on my choir. I'm going to order the C.D. from the conference so I can remember your comments as well.
    Thank you!
    Sarah Garcia
    Choir Director at St. Joseph's Parish, Beltsville, MD

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