This track is limited to fifteen students and those applying for this track must have previously attended MMA. The Liturgical Leadership Track is for young people who are interested in or considering liturgical music leadership and/or ministry as something they want to continue throughout their life. This track addresses and develops the many skills and sensitivities needed to be a leader in liturgical and music ministry: liturgical planning, designing and evaluating parish celebrations, art and environment, working in collaboration with parish ministers, and planning and preparing for seasons and special celebrations. Accepted students are
Each day during the week of MMA, students participate in a class led by a master teacher. These classes each have a unique focus, through which youth deepen their musical skills as it applies to their particular ministry as a liturgical music leader. Students can only participate in one track during the week. Below are the available daily tracks and basic descriptions of their focus.
The goal of this track is for singers to not only deepen their vocal skills, but also to address the qualities of the ministry of the cantor. Vocal technique is addressed, as well as leadership tips and the sensitivities needed to lead a liturgical assembly toward good and full participation. Participants in this track are asked to prepare two contrasting liturgical selections to bring to MMA and sing before the group.
This track is for pianists and organists and is designed to address the many important skills necessary for liturgical keyboardists, such as accompanying techniques, styles, transposition, playing in an ensemble, and linking liturgical rites together. A key aspect of this track is to develop improvisation skills. Exploration of synthesizer and midi are also included.
This track is for acoustic, electric, and bass playing guitarists and ukulele and mandolin players. In this track, participants explore different strumming and picking patterns, chord development, how to play with other guitarists and instrumentalists, improvisation, and how the guitar functions as a liturgical instrument.
This track is for drumset players and auxiliary percussionists (those who play congas, hand percussion, etc.). Participants in this track discuss the various styles that the competent drummer/percussionist should have at their fingertips and how the percussionist and percussion ensemble operates as a ritual unit and leader.
Flute, Woodwind, Brass, and String Tracks
Tracks are also offered for those who play wind, brass, and string instruments (flute, oboe, clarinet, saxophone, bassoon, trumpet, French horn, trombone, violin, viola, cello, etc.). These tracks address specific instrumental techniques, improvisation, and how these instruments are utilized both as solo instruments and ensemble groupings in the context of the liturgy.
This track is limited to eight participants and looks at the principles and techniques for composing liturgical music, the different types of music and musical forms, text writing, adapting and arranging texts, preparing scores, and the liturgical, musical, and pastoral guidelines needed to write music for the Church. Participants have opportunities for their compositions to be evaluated by liturgical composers and for their pieces to be performed for the MMA community. To apply and be considered for this track, applicants should have a good understanding of basic music theory. Additionally, applicants must submit two liturgical compositions, in both
allowed participation in this track once. See page the Youth Application for additional acceptance requirements and additional essay questions.
All accepted participants in the Liturgical Leadership Track are required to complete a specific set of essay questions for this track included in the application.
print form and on their audition CD, when they apply. See the Youth Application or the Audition Guidelines page regarding the specific details for submissions and composition texts.