Daniel Taylor, Music Director

Kathryn Whitney, Artistic Director

The Summer Baroque Choral Academy


at the Victoria Conservatory of Music on Vancouver Island is a week-long online course for singers on the choral music of J.S. Bach.

Led in rehearsal by our Music Director, Sony Classical Artist DANIEL TAYLOR, the course brings together a faculty of over 30 leading conductors, solo singers, professional choristers and period instrumentalists from across Canada and the UK.

Choristers receive:

  • live, in-person choral workshops with Laurence Cummings, Nicholas McGegan, Lisette Canton, and Howard Dyck
  • live, in-person sectionals by voice part with Matthew Larkin, Kathleen Allan, Donald Hunt, and Mark McDonald
  • intimate ‘baroque bites’ sessions with Daniel Taylor, Suzie Leblanc, Julia Wedman, Cristina Zacharias, Benjamin Butterfield, John Abberger, and Nancy Argenta
  • live Q&A sessions, where you can put your style and performance questions to our faculty
  • live full-choir rehearsals with Daniel Taylor
  • fun social events, including a Bach Pub Quiz and Virtual Afterparty
  • a 50% discount at the music learning site ChoraLine, with a smartphone app to help you learn your part with ease
  • a final Live Global YouTube Concert, led by Daniel Taylor and featuring soloists including Nancy Argenta, Benjamin Butterfield, Suzie Leblanc, Phillip Addis, Isaiah Bell, members of the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Choir, and Genesis Sixteen.

Everyone is welcome – Join us!

With all music provided, full-time and part-time streams to suit your budget, and free pre-course technical ‘tune-ins’ to get you ready to sing, the Summer Baroque Choral Academy will be an unforgettable experience, suited to every singer.

All sessions are archived for viewing outside timetable hours.

Follow these links to read more about our faculty, course elements, timetable, and music.

FEES With two fee levels ($145 full-time and $50 part-time), we hope the course will be affordable for every singer. Follow this link to learn more about the difference between the full-time and part-time streams.

We look forward to welcoming you to the Summer Baroque Choral Academy at the Victoria Conservatory of Music in July!


Kathryn Whitney


Meet our Faculty, Soloists, and Players


Daniel Taylor

Kathryn Whitney

Nancy Argenta

Suzie Leblanc

Laurence Cummings

Cristina Zacharias

Julia Wedman

Nicholas McGegan

Benjamin Butterfield

Howard Dyck

Matthew Larkin

Lisette Canton

Kathleen Allan

Donald Hunt

Mark McDonald

Sophie Larivière

Matthias Maute

John Abberger

Soloists & Players

Philippe Gagné

Phillip Addis

Isaiah Bell

Alison Mackay

Alexis Basque

Ed Reifel

Christopher Bagan

Margaret Lingas

Rebecca Genge

Jonathon Adams

Sinéad White

Haitham Haidar

Jane Fingler

Cory Knight

Simon Honeyman

Joel Allison

Mieka Michaux

Learn about our Course

What are the course elements?

  • Full choir rehearsals with Music Director Daniel Taylor

  • Workshops on Bach and on Baroque singing from choral directors Lisette Canton, Laurence Cummings, Howard Dyck, and Nicholas McGegan.

  • ‘Baroque Bites’ style sessions with top international singers and players, including Nancy Argenta, Benjamin Butterfield, Jeanne Lamon, Suzie LeBlanc, and Daniel Taylor.

  • Sectionals rehearsals by voice type with award-winning choral directors from across Canada, including Matthew Larkin, Kathleen Allan, Kathryn Whitney and Donald Hunt.

  • Daily warm-up and technique sessions

  • A 50% discount at music learning site ChoraLine, whose dedicated smartphone app will help you learn your part quickly and easily

  • Social events, such as YouSing informal student concerts, a Zoom Pub Quiz, and a Virtual Post-concert Party

  • A final global concert of Bach’s Magnificat in D and ‘Jesu, meine Freude’ directed by Daniel Taylor, broadcast live on YouTube, and featuring a Dream Team of international soloists and instrumentalists, including from Tafelmusik, Genesis Sixteen, and Victoria Baroque*

  • After the course is finished, choristers can submit their videos for inclusion in our Come, Sing Magnificat! virtual choir video*

*Soloists, players, and chorister video are contingent on enrolment. Please encourage your friends to join us!

How much does it cost?

  • Full time course – $145*

  • Part-time course – $50*

*Prices in Canadian dollars. Plus $2.25 registration fee.

How do the streams differ?

  • Full time choristers sing Bach’s Magnificat in D and the Bach chorale ‘Jesu, meine Freude’, they access all course elements, and sing in the final concert.

  • Part-time choristers sing the Bach chorale ‘Jesu, meine Freude’, access Warm-ups, ‘Baroque Bites’, social events, and sing in the final global concert.

What will our timetable look like?

Scroll down to see a preview of our timetables.

What if I live in a different time zone?

We give a special shout out to those getting up early in the morning or staying up late to join us live! 

But all sessions will be recorded and available online, so you can watch them whenever you like, wherever you live.

How will we meet?

We will be meeting online throughout the Summer Baroque Choral Academy.

Like so many other choirs who are working together online during this challenging time, we will be using a combination of Zoom webinars and YouTube Live sessions.

Zoom is a wonderful platform that allows us to speak and sing to each other in real time. We can see each other’s faces, see each other breathing, watch each other’s mouths, just like in traditional choir rehearsals. Although the platform cannot yet accommodate people singing together at the same time (we can do it, but it doesn’t sound very nice!), it does allow us to rehearse live with mics switched off. We can then switch mics on again to check notes and communicate live with our conductors and coaches.

YouTube live is a fabulous platform for bringing people together from around the world. Our conductor can conduct us and talk to us live while we sing at home, or we can broadcast a bespoke video for our singers to sing along with (we will be doing both at different stages on our course – watch your email feed for updates and messages as our stellar instrumentalists and professional choristers put together our very special concert video).

Live Chat. Choristers can use the live chat on YouTube Live and on Zoom to talk to each other across time zones – it is a fantastic feature that really makes us feel connected.

In fact it does much more than just make us feel that connected – these platforms confirm that we are connected. When we sing together, we are profoundly connected through the music we make – it is one of music’s truly great mysteries, and one that will bring us close, healing us of our solitude. Come!  Let’s Sing Magnificat together!

Our Timetable