Summer Choir Camp
Posted in General on August 21, 2015

“They will take it all back with them to the Masses they attend,” said Mr. Nicholas Botkins, referring to the music experience and skills the campers acquired from this summer’s Choir Camp. And indeed they will: thirty-nine students came from eleven states to attend the Institute’s sixth annual Choir Camp, from August 2-7, at the beautiful Ursuline Sisters’ Mount Saint Joseph Conference and Retreat Center in Maple Mount, KY.

During the five-day intensive study, the campers focused their attention on Gregorian Chant, Latin, musicianship, and vocal technique. The instructors, who, incidentally, traveled from as far as Georgia and Texas, taught the students in small groups to make sure the material was absorbed and adequate attention was given to challenging areas. Apart from rehearsals, the campers engaged in games, sports, evening prayer and daily Rosary walks on the beautiful grounds. Watching the campers blossom musically and form new friendships was as rewarding for the counselors, supervising mothers, and Abbe Alex, as it was for the campers. Holy Mass was offered daily at camp by Canon Andrew Todd, and there were ample opportunities for confessions.

Music clips

Sung by the Choir Camp 2015, directed by Mr. Nicholas Botkins

Kyrie 

Sanctus

 

As in previous camps, this year’s campers sang for the retired and convalescing sisters who reside at the long-term care facility on campus. It was a memorable event for both the singers and the elderly sisters whose hearts were deeply touched by the musical young voices.

On the last day, the singers mustered all their newly acquired music skills and sang the entire Mass under the direction of Mr. Botkins. If love could be measured by St. Augustine’s words, “he who sings praise, not only sings, but also loves Him about whom he is singing,” the campers’ love for God filled the chapel at Mount Saint Joseph, and soared beyond the confines of the building.

It is true that the campers took it with them when they left the Institute’s sixth annual Choir Camp, but what they took was priceless beyond measure: friendships and camaraderie that come with every summer camp, but also the beauty of sacred music, love for the liturgy, spirit of service, and possession of music that they can gift to others when they offer their singing at Mass, wherever they are.

Click the images below to enlarge them.

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