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Private coaching for new and experienced singers of chant. You will learn to read, sing, and conduct Gregorian chant with confidence, life, and artistry. 

 

Private chant lessons are taught live by Angela Marie Rocchio, and delivered in studio or via Zoom.

One hour lessons offered Tuesday - Friday, US Central Time Zone.

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"It was my first experience of private lessons with a foreign tutor and online. Angela was available to accommodate for the 7 hour time difference from my country to hers. She is very welcoming, and well prepared for lessons. I did not expect this type of chant lessons. It was much BETTER than I thought!!! I learnt a lot and it was perfect timing since I found myself building on the solid ground she taught me. She facilitates the learning experience, gives lots of encouragement, sends notes after each lesson and helpful links. I definitely recommend her. Angela is a wonderful person to work with." ~ Cheryl V., graduate student in Malta

STAGE ONE

New students, regardless of musical background, begin with the fundamentals of chant notation:

  • sight reading on the four line staff

  • solfege

  • movable “do”

  • neumes

  • centering the ancient tonality of the eight modes into the ear and brain.

 

Singers new to chant, or students who do not read music, will develop fundamental skills through cumulative practice exercises. Experienced singers of chant will hone their existing skills, and learn pedagogical techniques to teach these fundamentals of chant to their own ensembles.

STAGE TWO

Having mastered the fundamentals of notation and sight reading, you will learn the artistry of singing chant. The marriage of melody and text will be explored, with reverence for chant’s unique musical role as the “handmaiden of the word”. You will learn:

  • legato singing

  • phrasing

  • pronunciation and diction

  • delivery of the text

  • breathing

  • the role of silence

  • the art of “una voce” (singing with “one voice” as a group)

  • You will be exposed to semiological principles as found in ancient manuscripts, written prior to the invention of the four line staff.

  • You will apply these skills through specific chant repertoire, e.g. the Gregorian propers, Marian antiphons, or special chants such as the Exsultet and the Christmas Proclamation.

Students directing an ensemble will explore:

  • the most appropriate chant resources for your situation

  • ways to introduce chant within a new environment

  • rehearsal techniques and other considerations

STAGE THREE

Students who sight read chant easily, and interpret it with artistry, may enter into the study of “chironomy”, or conducting. The principles and rules of the Solesmes Method are treated (i.e. the idea of the “ictus”, and the phrasing of arsis and thesis). These techniques are modified to more closely reflect the musicality of the chant.

 

You will be challenged to seek the unique musical idea within each chant, to impart this musical idea to your ensemble members, and to teach them to listen to each other as they learn to sing chant as one voice.

Requirements for all private lessons

Ability to sing on pitch, and commitment to practice exercises between lessons (15-30 minutes per day).

Materials

Students will receive online access to all educational materials via an exclusive resources page. Students may choose to order a hard copy of the Parish Book of Chant, 2nd edition, published by the Church Music Association of America, and the Gregorian Chant Practicum, published by the Catholic University of America.

Technical Requirements

A desktop computer, laptop, or tablet (the larger the screen the better) equipped with a videocamera (no cell phones, please). Computer microphones are notoriously poor at reliably transmitting singing. Excellent external microphones are readily available and reasonably priced. Ask for recommendations. Reliable access to high-speed internet is a must. Students are responsible for having working technology. 

 

Tuition

60-minute lessons are $75 USD each. Minimum of five lessons. No refunds. 

Tuition for each set of lessons must be paid in full prior to first lesson. Lesson times are reserved on educator's calendar once payment has been made.