The Saint Simons Sacred Music Festival, founded in 2019, is an event inspired by the Music and Worship services of the American Choral Directors Association National Conference. Its goal is to further our sense of community through the healing powers of music. It is a completely non-denominational endeavour open to any and all singers who wish to make our Golden Isles an even better place. It also exists to introduce new music to our worship community, and to support contemporary composers in the genre of sacred music. We were excited to host our inaugural composer and clinician Elaine Hagenberg in 2019, and now can announce with equal enthusiasm that our festival will return in February with renowned choral composer and clinician Craig Courtney. You can read about our composer-in-residence and listen to some samples of his music HERE. Mr. Courtney will rehearse and conduct our church “Honor Choir” and lead them in the world premiere of his newest piece, commissioned by the festival, at a special service Saturday, Feb. 5th, 2022 at 5:00 p.m. Our service, Sing for Community, Sing for Peace, is open to everyone.
Mr. Courtney’s published works include more than two hundred choral octavos, nine vocal collections, a piano solo collection and six extended works for choir and orchestra. Compositionally, Mr. Courtney combines his training and background as a pianist, a cellist, a vocal coach, an accompanist and a choral director to create words that bear his unique style. He has been a frequent recipient of ASCAP achievement awards and his composition, Peace I Give to You, was awarded 1st place in the 2003 John Ness Beck Foundation competition.