Saturday, May 14th, 2022


2:00 pm – 5:00 pm


The Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral, 23 S 38th St, Philadelphia, PA 19104

ARC Singing the Spirituals

(This event was rescheduled from January) Please note: In order to ensure COVID safety during this in-person singing event, proof of COVID vaccination must be provided at the door. Separation and masking will be maintained by workshop participants. During the closing prayer service, the fully vaccinated Intermezzo Choir will sing without masks but with separation. The Cathedral has been certified as exceeding standards for air circulation, with HEPA filters.

Church musicians, clergy, and lay people are invited to learn more about how to introduce the repertoire of the African American Spirituals to their choirs and congregations in this workshop sponsored by the Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral and the Diocesan Anti-Racism Commission.

Four clinicians will model how they teach the Spirituals to their adult, youth, and children’s choirs, as well as to their congregations. Special attention will be given to the historical context of the music, and the ways in which those who are not direct descendants of the enslaved people who originated the Spirituals can develop their own authentic connection to the music with respect and integrity.

The clinicians are Dr. Jay Fluellen, Organist/Choir Director, African Episcopal Church of St. Thomas; Dr. Lynnel Joy Jenkins, Artistic Director, Westlake (NJ) Music Academy; Ms. Carrie Lessene, Artistic Director, Intermezzo Choir Ministry, Philadelphia; and Dr. Thomas Lloyd, Canon for Music and the Arts, Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral.

The afternoon will conclude with a short service of singing, supported by the Intermezzo Choir Ministry (photo above), prayer led by the Rev. Dr. Chaz Howard, Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral, and a homily by the Rev. Canon Jordan Casson, Rector, St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, Yeadon.

For biographies and photos of the clinicians and further information about the workshop, go to this page on the Cathedral website.

Music for these selections will be provided to attendees as part of the workshop. For more information contact Thomas Lloyd at