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Dr. Ysaye M. Barnwell is coming to First Church!

Dr. Ysaye M. BarnwellFUUSD is welcoming Dr. Ysaye Barnwell to our campus on Saturday, January 14, and Sunday, January 15. She'll be leading a workshop on Saturday from 9 to 3 and then co-leading our Sunday service with Ian Riddell on the 15th. We hope you can join us for both!
Workshop: Building a Vocal Community®
The Power of Song in Community
Saturday, January 14, 2017 9am - 3pm
First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Diego

Join us for a gathering of singing, story, and history as Dr. Barnwell leads us in rhythms, chants, traditional songs from Africa, the Diaspora, and African American culture. Throughout the workshop, this music and the practice of singing it will be placed in the historical and social context of the communities from which it grew. You don’t have to be a trained singer to take part in this powerful workshop. Just bring your voice and your spirit. $10 requested donation for the workshop. Pre-registration requested, email ian@firstuusandiego.org. Help us spread the word - download a printer-friendly flyer.

We know music to be a transmitter of culture and tradition, a way of knowing, a way of expressing, and a way of connecting with others and with the deeper reality of our lives. Its presence in our lives teaches us, inspires us, challenges us, and transforms our reality. The music ministry at First Church strives to explore, collaborate, worship, and be transformed through and by the music we make–individually, in groups large and small, and with the whole community. We strive to create opportunities for all to explore and participate to the breadth of their abilities and comfort. We’re excitedly getting ready for a visit from musician, composer, singer, and teacher Dr. Ysaye M. Barnwell over the weekend of January 14-15.

A singer for the group, Sweet Honey In The Rock®, Dr. Barnwell joined them in 1979, where her training as a Sign Language Interpreter led her to facilitating the group’s tradition of including a Sign Language Interpreter in the ensemble. After 34 years, Barnwell retired from Sweet Honey In The Rock to pursue her other interests. She has, for the past 30 years, spent much of her time off stage working as a master teacher and choral clinician in African American cultural performance.

On Saturday, January 14, Dr. Barnwell will lead a workshop in Bard Hall, Hillcrest titled “Building a Vocal Community ®: The Power of Song in Community.” On her website (www.vocalcommunity), Dr. Barnwell writes, “There is an awesome power in the human voice and when uncommon voices are blended for the common good, they become a ‘vocal community’ at its best.” Using the oral tradition, Dr. Barnwell will lead participants in singing “rhythms, chants, traditional songs from Africa and the Diaspora, and a variety of songs from African American culture including spirituals, ring shouts, hymns, gospels, and songs from the Civil Rights movement.”

Throughout the workshop, this music and the practice of singing it will be placed in the historical and social context of the communities from which it grew. You don’t have to be a trained singer to take part in this powerful workshop. “All that is required,” Dr. Barnwell says, “is a willingness to sing.” On Sunday, January 15, Dr. Barnwell will co-lead the Sunday morning services at our Hillcrest Campus with Rev. Ian W. Riddell, our Minister of Music and Worship Arts. Reprinted from First Words Dec 2016 edition. 

2 comments (Add your own)

1. Rev. Dr. Beth A. Johnson wrote:

Fri, January 6, 2017 @ 4:02 PM

2. Rev. Dr. Beth A. Johnson wrote:
I'm looking forward to being part of a singing community for the day!

Fri, January 6, 2017 @ 4:02 PM

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