On Saturday, 12 October, children from the New York City area gathered at Holy Virgin Protection Cathedral to learn about, and experience, liturgical music. The workshop led by David Lucs was the fourth offered by the diocese's Commission on Liturgical Music [CoLM]. "The kids had a great time learning about music as it is used within the liturgical life of our Orthodox Faith," said Mr. Lucs. "It's a blessing from God to see their enthusiasm and those 'a-ha!' moments when they discover something new."
In addition to reviewing basic music skills, the workshops also provide children (ages 5-15) an opportunity to see the relationship between music and iconography. Hymns introduced included the Troparion and Kontakion for the feast of the Protection of the Mother of God --the patronal feast of the Cathedral. Kids were sent on a scavenger hunt to find an icon which related to the texts found in the hymns. After finding the patronal icon on the iconostasis, they 'discovered' the various figures mentioned in the hymn and realized they were also under the protection of the Theotokos by standing in front of the icon ... and also in their daily lives. Everyone then sang the Troparion and Kontakion in honor of the Mother of God.
"The energy of David and all the young participants was magic," said Father Daniel Skvir (Co-Chairperson, CoLM). "Bishop Michael's appearance only intensified the enthusiasm and good will. The spirited singing of 'Eis Polla Eti, Despota' and wonderful 'Holy God' will long be remembered by all the listeners."
Interest has been growing to host more music workshops in 2014, and the CoLM is happy to work with parishes that want to host one for their parish or deanery-wide children. Different formats and topics can be introduced depending on age groups and skill levels, and it is hoped these workshops will inspire more new singers to join our existing choirs in singing praises to God.
The next event ... "Making Music with Kids" ... is scheduled for Buffalo NY at Saints Peter & Paul Church on 16 November. Visit the CoLM website for details. Go HERE!