Weekend of Music

Come to the Shenandoah Valley for a Weekend of Music!

… 100 voice choir for adults of all ages

… sing brand new church, choral, and children’s songs

… record this music and give a program

… help to strengthen worship in our churches 

What is the Weekend of Music?

The  Weekend of Music is part of SCMC’s new Church Partnership Program. Our goal is to help congregations strengthen their worship. 

The Church Partnership Program provides resources to churches who are wanting to grow in congregational singing that is engaged, enthusiastic, and thoughtful. This year we are testing this program with a number of congregations to see whether these might be useful more broadly:

  • Provide long-distance training to song leaders in engaging the congregation skillfully and thoughtfully. 
  • Commission new songs that are deeply biblical, but written in today’s English and today’s musical language. 
  • Provide a Weekend of Music for a volunteer choir to learn these new songs and record them. The recordings will then be given to each family in participating congregations to take home and learn for use in family and congregational worship. 

Partner churches will receive booklets with the new music, as well as CDs with recordings of all the new music. The Weekend of Music is where these new pieces will be recorded. It is open to anyone to join this 100-voice choir and be a part of this exciting new venture!


(Our 2020 schedule has not yet been created)


October 9-11, 2020

All events will be held at Dayton Mennonite Church, Dayton, VA. 

Friday, October 4
Saturday, October 5
Sunday, October 6
Visit a local church

The choir will be learning 10-14 new pieces. Each choir member is expected to take personal responsibility to learn all music on their own before the first rehearsal. Music will be sent out 4-6 weeks before the first rehearsal. 

Wendell Nisly will be conducting this year.

Choir size will be limited to 100. 


Choir Members

A primary goal for this weekend is to add to the lively stream of new music that is flowing into our communities and churches. This requires commissioning new music — selecting texts, and paying composers a living wage to set these texts to music. Our composers include Douglas Byler, Ivan Martin, Lyle Stutzman, and Wendell Glick.

  • Church Music. We believe there is a need for new congregational songs in today’s English and in a distinctly current musical language. Two of the new commissions are short songs with a very brief text, which are more meditative. Two songs are hymns, one taken directly from a parable of Jesus, and one on prayer.
  • Choral Music. The three new choral pieces for this weekend are intended to be accessible to high school choirs and youth choirs.
  • Children’s Music. Children should be singing songs that are at their level, but are not “cotton candy.” In particular, singing scripture is of crucial importance. The two children’s songs retell two parables: the sower, and the shepherd who left the flock to seek the lost sheep.
Music will be sent out in advance to singers, who will learn the music on their own. The composers will provide sound tracks to help you with this.



Registration Information

There will be 100 choir spots – 25 of each voice part. Parts may be re-balanced if needed. 

Dress Code

Please follow these guidelines for the weekend. 

Men, please:

  • Wear dress pants and full-button shirts with tails tucked in during the day. 
  • Do not wear neckties.
  • Wear shoes.

Program Attire:

  • Solid-colored black dress pants
  • White long-sleeved dress shirt
  • Black belt, socks, and dress shoes

Women, please:

  • Wear dresses or jumpers without slits.
  • Have sleeve lengths be a minimum of near the elbow and skirt length be at least half way between knees and ankles.
  • Ensure necklines are near the base of your neck.
  • Wear shoes or sandals (no flip-flops).
  • Cover your hair with a veiling.

Program Attire

  • Loose-fitting, solid-colored black dress (no pinstripes or pattern)
  • Hosiery and black dress shoes
  • Sleeves at or below the elbow


The cost per person to participate in the choir weekend is $100, due at the time you register online, payable by card or check.

This cost includes and helps cover the cost of:

  • Sheet music
  • Five meals for the weekend

It does not include lodging, which is not provided by SCMC. 

We will offer an 80% refund through September 1. No refunds will be offered after September 1.  


What do I do for lodging for the weekend?

Each choir member is responsible to find their own lodging. You can check out local hotels, or try AirBnB if you don’t have friends or family to stay with. 

Who gets the CD recording from the weekend?

Every member of a participating church will get a CD. Choir members who are not part of the church may purchase a personal copy if requested.

I'm interested in knowing more about the Church Partnership Program. What do I do now?

Contact us!


Where is this event taking place?

All events will be held at Dayton Mennonite Church: 4887 John Wayland Hwy, Dayton, VA 22821. 

Interested in being

a partner church

in the future? 

WordPress Video Lightbox Plugin

Pin It on Pinterest