Polyphony Church Music Conference

McCorkle Music BuildingTHURSDAY-SATURDAY

MARCH 14-16, 2019

See Updated Schedule 

You are invited to join other church musicians in celebration of our common journey as music ministers, to learn from well-renowned clinicians, and to be energized for our vocation as we move forward. Our purpose is to provide enrichment, inspiration, and fellowship; linking and nurturing church musicians who share a passion for ministry through the choral arts. 


  • Choral Techniquesfeaturing Don Neuen, choral techniques; David Schwoebel, composer; Don Saliers, theologian
  • Anthem Reading Sessions
  • A Practitioner’s Practical Process in Composing
  • Service of Morning Prayer
  • Models for Clergy-Musician Relationships
  • Rhythms of Doxology and Lament—Choir, Congregation, and Daily Life
  • Choral Rehearsal
  • Mercer University Concert


After twelve years on the faculty of the prestigious Eastman School of Music, Rochester New York, Donald Neuen accepted the position of Professor of Music/Conducting and Director of Choral Activities for UCLA in 1993.He immediately developed the highly acclaimed UCLA Chorale. Fall, 1996, Neuen also accepted the position of Conductor and Artistic Musical Director of the 130-voice, highly select Los Angeles based Angeles Chorale, a large chorus whose repertoire emphasizes major works for chorus and orchestra.

In 1999, he accepted the additional position of Choral Conductor and Minister of Music for the internationally televised Crystal Cathedral Choir with Robert Schuller's "Hour of Power", seen weekly in over 100 countries totaling 20 million viewers. The special mission of Neuen with this great choir was to bring to the world the finest quality of sacred music, performed with the highest standards of professional excellence. The repertoire ranged from traditional anthems to opera and oratorio choruses. Jan von den Bosch, one of Europe's leading entrepreneurs, hailed the Choir (on its European tour) as "The greatest choir in the world".

 David Schwoebel is Minister of Music / Composer in Residence at Derbyshire Baptist Church in Richmond Virginia. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Voice and Organ Performance from McKendree College in Lebanon, IL and a Master of Church Music with an emphasis in Composition from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Prior to beginning his ministry at Derbyshire in January 1997, he had served churches in his hometown of Belleville, IL, as well as Montgomery AL, and Atlanta, GA. As an ordained minister, David administrates and oversees a comprehensive music ministry of nine choral organizations, five handbell choirs, an Orff ensemble, a 28-piece orchestra and brass ensemble. His energetic, hands-on approach to ministry finds him working each week with people of all ages, encouraging and equipping them to discover and develop their varied musical talents and skills.

Dr. Don E. Saliers returned to Candler School of Theology at Emory University in 2014 as Theologian-in-Residence after retiring in 2007 as the William R. Cannon Distinguished Professor of Theology and Worship. For many years he directed the Master of Sacred Music program at Emory, and was an organist and choirmaster at Cannon Chapel for 35 years. Before joining the Candler faculty in 1974, Saliers taught at Yale Divinity School, and has taught in summer programs at Notre Dame, Boston College, Vancouver School of Theology, St. John’s University, and Boston University School of Theology.

An accomplished musician, theologian and scholar of liturgics, Saliers is the author of 15 books on the relationship between theology and worship practices, as well as more than 150 articles, essays, chapters in books and book reviews. He co-authored A Song to Sing, a Life to Live with his daughter Emily Saliers, a member of the Indigo Girls.



Hilton Garden Inn at Mercer University

1220 Stadium Drive

Macon, GA 31204


$119/night (when calling, ask for the special Polyphony Church Music rate)

A list of other hotels with general Mercer rates can be found at: https://www.bethebear.com/hotel-recommendations.cfm

Registration Costs: 

$125 fee: covers all session materials and one meal.

To be paid on site or by mail to:

                   Mercer University

                   Townsend School of Music

                   Attn: Dr. Jeffery Seeley

                   1501 Mercer University Drive

                   Macon, GA 31207

For more information contact: 

          Dr. Jeffery Seeley

          Associate Professor of Church Music




Polyphony Registration Form        



Polyphony Church Music Conference Schedule 

Thursday (in the McCorkle Music Building)

12:45pm              Registration Opens                         
1:45pm-2:45pm      Models for Clergy-Musician Relationships
       (All sessions on Thursday in Fickling Hall, unless otherwise noted)
       Jeffery Seeley, Associate Professor of Church Music at Mercer
2:45pm-3:00pm      Break 
3:00pm-4:00pm      A Practitioner’s Practical Process
       David Schwoebel, Minister of Music / Composer in Residence at
       Derbyshire Baptist Church, Richmond, VA
4:00pm-4:30pm      Break 
4:30pm-5:30pm       Anthem Reading Session
       David Schwoebel
5:30pm-7:00pm      Dinner (on your own)
7:00pm-9:00pm      Teaching a Beautiful, Expressive, and Natural Vocal/Choral Tone
       Don Neuen, Retired Distinguished Professor of Conducting and
       Director of Choral Activities at the University of California,
       Los Angeles. Retired Director of Music for the Hour of Power
9:00pm      Refreshment and Fellowship 
       (in the McCorkle Music Building)

Friday (in Newton Chapel)

9:00am-9:30am              Service of Morning Prayer                        
       Don Saliers, Theologian-in-Residence, Retired William R. Cannon
       Distinguished Professor of Theology and Worship, Candler
       School of theology, Emory University
9:30am-10:30am      Rhythms of Doxology and Lament – Choir, Congregation
       and Daily Life
       Don Sailers 
10:30am-11:00am      Break 
11:00am-12:00pm      Anthem Reading Session
12:00pm      Lunch (on your own)
1:00pm-3:00pm      Impacting English Diction
       Forward Motion, Phrasing and Forward Motion
       Don Neuen
3:00pm-3:15pm      Break 
3:15pm-4:15pm      Magic Melody Making
       David Schwoebel
4:15pm-4:30pm      Break 
4:30pm-5:30pm      The Congregation Sings Its Prayer: Psalms, Hymn and
       Don Saliers
6:00pm-7:30pm      Conference Dinner (included in registration fee)
       [Woodruff House]
8:00pm      Kaleidoscope Concert (in Fickling Hall)

 Saturday (in Newton Chapel)

9:00am-9:30am              Service of Morning Prayer                        
       Don Saliers
9:30am-10:30am      Choral Rehearsal
       Don Neuen
10:35am-10:45am      Break 
10:45am-Noon      Choral Rehearsal
       Don Neuen
12:00pm      Adjournment