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Chant Series

A new series begins on Wednesday, April 10, 2013. In it we will continue our exploration of simple melodic formulas that help us to invoke, evoke and celebrate the sacred among us and in our our world. In addition to the mantra chants from many traditions that formed the bulk of our winter Chant series we will be introducing beautiful chants that help us experience the spirit of longer sacred texts. As some of our chants will have beautiful two, three or four-part settings this chant series is an ideal bridge to choral singing for inexperienced singers.

Eight consecutive Wednesdays from 7:00 to 8:30 pm (except the first Wednesday of each month which is reserved for Come Sing) at St Luke’s Anglican Church, 760 Somerset Street West. It is not necessary to register ahead of time. Just show up on Wednesday April 10th. Fee for the eight evenings is $150.

Cave Chanting

Join us on Saturday, October 13 to explore your voice in the exciting, overtone-rich acoustic magic of the spectacular Bonnechere Caves in Eganville, Ontario.

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New Video from Partus Films


Chant: Mode, Mantra and Meditation

Wednesdays from 7 pm to 9 pm, beginning January 18, a series of eight chant workshops offers an opportunity to experience the profoundly centering and grounding influence of meditative chant through chants drawn from many traditions — Buddhist, Hindu, Aboriginal, Jewish, Christian, Sufi, Pagan, etc.

Although the first class is over, there is still time to join this exploration of the deeply centring and calming effect of mantras and longer chants drawn from a variety of traditions of both the East and West.

If you’d like to join the class, just show up at St Luke’s Church in Chinatown (760 Somerset West at Bell) before 7 pm. The fee for this series is $150.

Speaking as Singing: Vocal Variety for Speakers

This piece by Barclay McMillan was dapted from an article written for The Inside Edge, an e-monthly of Ottawa Advanced Toastmasters, May 2005.

“If our speaking is to elicit from listeners the response our words deserve, our voices need to be intimately responsive to that neuro-muscular source of passion, pain, pleasure, joy, sadness, concern, hope, inspiration–the list of emotional colours is endless–that gives rise to our words”

Just a few weeks ago, as I was beginning to mull over what I might say in the article on voice I had promised to write for The Inside Edge, I came across an interview in the Ottawa Citizen with the renowned Canadian choreographer and dancer Margie Gillis who was coming to perform at the National Arts Centre. “For years I couldn’t articulate what I do,” says Gillis whose extraordinary ability to touch people’s souls with her dancing is celebrated the world over, “but now I know it is the neuro-muscular system. Everything-emotions, politics, spirituality-has a physical response. What happens in the body is this emotion turns into electricity and touches the muscles. It’s moving to internal landscapes. I choreograph from that place.”

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Victim No More – A Life Song

Barclay McMillan in Conversation with LifeSong Graduate, Bernice Logan

Edited by Andrea Prazmowski

…something about choosing to say or sing my story in different ways made it a story of beauty. You know it’s not something that needs to be stuffed under a carpet… It’s this life’s story, and it can be celebrated. It’s a victory story, and one that helped me to see the victory. Of my life. Since LifeSong I’ve been living very differently. Remarkably differently!

— Bernice, LifeSong participant

Change of life — transformation – we find over and over again in the experiences of LifeSong. The changes differ in degree and in kind, but show themselves in the context of healing — changed perception, integration, restored confidence, augmented skill, renewed energy, creativity, joy.

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Ottawa Citizen profiles Come Sing!

La, la, la…Barclay McMillan encourages others to find their voices

By Julia Elliott, The Ottawa Citizen, 3 January 2004

Like to find your singing voice?

Don’t fret. No matter what you might think, you’ve got a voice that’s worth hearing. Barclay McMillan, a former host of CBC Radio’s Mostly Music, is adamant on that point. It’s important, he croons, “if for no other reason than that it feels good.” He delivers the “feels good” in a drawn-out, sensual bass that hints at the extreme joy of allowing the voice to tap its potential.

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Barclay McMillan and LifeSong

From Tone Magazine, March 1997

by Andrew MacDonald

It’s not just that music is Barclay McMillan’s passion; it’s turning people on to music and to the transformative power and beauty of their own vocal sound that moves him. Barclay is like a man striking a great gong: out go the ripples of sound and the world reverberates in response. Barclay understands the importance of vibration. A lot of people have vibrated with him already. Besides the many who tuned in during his days as host of CBC’s national Mostly Music, or locally on Regional Contact, many hundreds of folks in Ottawa, Toronto and other centres have taken Barclay’s one-day workshop Dance on Winds of Sound, a joyous romp through sound to the very satisfying discovery that yes, each of us does indeed have a natural voice and that it is ever so possible to raise that voice in song.

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