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Alternate clinician named for 2019 Church Music Conference

church music conference
Bruce Neswick, Canon of Cathedral Music, Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, is the featured clinician for Furman's Church Music Conference in Jan. 2019.

Furman University has named an alternate clinician for its 2019 Church Music Conference to be held Thursday, Jan. 24 and Friday, Jan. 25. The featured clinician for the event is one the nation’s outstanding church musicians, Bruce Neswick, director of music and organist at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, Portland, Oregon.

Neswick takes the place of Stephen Cleobury of King’s College, who is dealing with ongoing health issues that prevent him from traveling abroad.

The conference is open to the public. Registration for the two-day event is $75 prior to Jan. 6, and $95 after that date as space remains. Student registration is $50.

Conference attendees who wish to sing in the combined choir for Friday evening’s Evensong service, on a space available basis, must register by Friday, Nov. 30.

Founded in 1971, the conference is made possible through a grant from the Thomson Foundation. Drawing church musicians from all over the Southeast, the conference features internationally known clinicians who present lectures and conduct workshops relating to the practice of church music.

For the Furman Church Music Conference, Neswick will lead rehearsals for Friday’s Evensong service; conduct an open rehearsal of Greenville’s acclaimed Chicora Voices youth choirs; and conduct the Furman Singers, Furman Chamber Choir, conference attendees and the Parish Choir of Christ Church (Episcopal), Greenville for the concluding Evensong service. He will also demonstrate his unique gifts for creative hymn playing and improvisation at the Evensong service, accompanying both congregational hymns and performing an improvised postlude.

The two conference sessions originally devoted to King’s College musical traditions will be replaced by Newsick’s lecture demonstrations, “Creative Hymn Playing” and “Singing the Psalms.”

Neswick has enjoyed a stellar career as both organist and choral director. Previously Organist and Director of Music at the Episcopal cathedrals of St. John the Divine (New YorkCity) and St. Philip (Atlanta), and Professor of Church Music at Indiana University, Neswick now directs a nationally-known and multi-faceted music program at Trinity Cathedral, Portland, where he leads the Trinity Choir (adults) as well as multiple youth and children’s choirs.

A highly sought-after organ recitalist and one of the outstanding improvisers of our time, Neswick has won first prize in multiple improvisation competitions including the 1990 American Guild of Organists National Competition in Organ Improvisation.

Learn more about the Church Music Conference. Or contact conference coordinator and University Organist Charles Tompkins at 864-294-2969 and The Furman Department of Music may be reached at 864-294-2086 and

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