Sacred Song Circles

Rufus Leading the Sing for Joy community with “Let’s All Get Together” at The Big Sing in December, 2018. Photo by Angela Wood
Find out the latest dates, songs and themes for this season, and help us find great songs to share in the next!

What is a sacred song circle?

It is a gathering of voices arranged in a circle, in sacred space, to share in song. We do this because it connects us, and unifies us, and inspires us to create something magnificent that we can’t do on our own. And when we all co-create that, it feels pretty darn good.

It’s a weekly gathering of people of all backgrounds, where all voices are welcome, and singing experience, and reading music, is not required. We learn songs in the oral tradition, through call and response, an ancient teaching method that is used my many sacred singing traditions. Many of our songs are pocket songs – short, quick to learn, and easy to remember and take with you. We often layer 3 simple verses together to create beautiful harmonies. And when the words we sing are positive, uplifting and inspiring, the feeling we get is even better, and even…well…spiritual!

  • S = Safe. Spiritual.
  • A = Accessible. Alignment.
  • C = Connection. Community.
  • R = Respect. Resonance.
  • E = Empathy. Energy.
  • D = De-stress. Divine.

“Singing is one of the most meditative forms of prayer.”

– Anonymous

Sacred singing is a universal and ancient tradition that uses group singing techniques and playful exploration to open our hearts and allow us to connect more fully with our authentic voices, and each other. Sacred singing helps bring our mind, body and Spirit together in unity to experience our full aliveness.

Led by community choir director Rufus Glassco, a life-long singer-songwriter, a sound healing practitioner and a drum circle facilitator who uses rhythm, sound, voice and nature to help people to connect, de-stress and heal.

Sliding scale of $15-$20 per class. Scholarships available. No one is turned away for lack of funds.

“To sing is to pray twice.”

– St. Augustine

Benefits of Singing

Scientists have proven it lowers our blood pressure, significantly decreases stress hormones in the body, and makes all of our hearts beat as one.

At a conferenced at the University of Sussex’s Centre for Innovation and Research in Wellbeing (CIRW), medical professionals shared that

“involvement in community choirs had been shown to improve health outcomes, alleviate the negative impact of social isolation and loneliness, lift up individual’s self-esteem and be an effective alternative to anti-depressant drugs in some cases”

Neil Vowles, University of Sussex

FAQs (And Answers)

Where are you holding the singing classes?

A: Classes are taking place on Zoom, online, for now.

Do I need to know how to sing harmony?

A: No. You aren’t expected to find the harmony either. We learn by call and response, so you just sing back what you hear. Many of the different lines we sing have different melody lines that create harmonies when layered on top of each other. So we still get to experience the harmony!

What if I can’t afford to come every week?

A: For now, until it is safe to sing together again, we will sing together online. My costs are lower, and so attendance is by donation. The suggested donation is $10 – $20 per class.

If I miss a week or two will I be left behind?

A: No, not at all. It’s a bit easier to sing longer pieces in an in-person choir, in which case we encourage regular attendance. While we sing online. we will be singing different songs each week, so missing a week or two won’t affect future participation, although we will miss you!

Are there any public performances?

A: Not for now. Once it is safe to meet and sing in person again, we will discuss working towards a final performance for family and friends, a fundraiser for a good cause.

Do you do any charity work?

A: This choir is launching in the Spring of 2020, and once we are able to have public performances, it would be great to invite family and friends to a charity concert, to raise funds for a good cause. In the meantime, it would be great to explore other options to raise funds or sing perhaps for a good cause. If you have any suggestions, please let us know!

Do you accept volunteers?

A: We do. Support is much appreciated and easy set up online. We need help with anything we spend time doing online – things like: social media marketing, graphic design, live-streaming support, member support, community song selection, posting lyrics online and sharing in Zoom, song research and record keeping.