A master class, "The performance and Interpretation of Orthodox Choral Music," took place on August 22nd-24th at Holy Virgin Mary Russian Orthodox Cathedral and was successfully conducted by Vladimir Gorbik, an eminent conductor and Orthodox church choirmaster from Moscow.

About 40 participants from different parts of the US and even from Canada arrived in our church in order to gain experience and join a spiritual, centuries-old tradition, the bearer of which is Maestro Gorbik.

The master class began with prayer in our historical cathedral and culminated three days later with the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, Bishopric rank, served by His Eminence Benjamin, Archbishop of San Francisco and the West, in collaboration with the parish Rector Archpriest Nazari Polataiko and Protodeacons Arkady Voloshchuk and Andrei Korobkov.

Throughout all three days, maestro Gorbik prepared participants of the master class precisely to this culminating event, namely, to the Hierarchical Vigil and Divine Liturgy.

The participants of the master class represented not only different geographical parts of the North American continent, but also different jurisdictions, creating a rich mosaic of American Orthodoxy.

As Archishop Benjamin said in his sermon, repeating the words of the great Russian thinker Feodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky, "Beauty will save the world," and namely beauty expressed in the diversity of our traditions, human voices and prayers, who, with a sole voice and sole heart, glorify the all-holy name of Our Lord, and this is the result of this class. We are sincerely grateful to all the participants, but first and foremost to all those who helped organize this grand event: our Sisterhood members, Parish Council members, and the staff of our God-rescued cathedral, as well as maestro Gorbik for his work. We hope that this master class will serve as a good start for the enrichment and development of the singing tradition not only in our cathedral or even our city and country, but will also serve as a good start for the spiritual growth of Orthodoxy in North America.