Choral Dialectics

Tired of artsy choral songs with dopey lyrics? Try a choral dialectic:


Secretary Michael is currently composing 6 choral dialectics. The ones shown above have already been completed. These books may be purchased from amazon for $6 each (click on images above), or the pdf files may be downloaded for free from the following links:
1. Clean Water
2. Change
3. Balance

As with all works by Secretary Michael, these scores are in the public domain so you may legally copy them for your choir.

Hopefully you'll find that these works are interesting, fun to sing (SATB), provide clear and rational argument, and contribute to the secular repertoire.

If your choir performs them, please record and post your performances on YouTube so that we can all learn from them.

Choral composers - please create your own choral dialectics to help legitimize this new direction in choral art.


What is a Choral Dialectic?

A “choral dialectic” is a four-movement choral work (with or without instruments) in which a rational argument about any subject is battled-out musically. There’s only one rule: every choral dialectic must use the following four titles for its four movements:

Latin for “I believe”, the Credo movement presents a pre-existing feeling or understanding about the subject.

Short for “on the one hand”, this movement introduces one side of the argument.

Short for “on the other hand”, this movement introduces a different side of the argument - a contrasting way of looking at it. If the previous movement was sweet, this one will probably be sour. If the previous was about abundance, this one will probably be about scarcity.

Now that the two hands have tossed the arguments back and forth, some sort of new understanding will have to emerge. Maybe there will be growth - a new way of being, a new way of living in the world, a new “Credo”. Or maybe not.


With its “Credo” beginning and its “Go and Do (Ite Missa Est)” ending, the choral dialectic might be regarded as a secular analogue to the choral Mass.


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