Furman Church Music Conference

January 16-18, 2024

This year’s Thomson Church Music Lecture series will feature clinician Tom Trenney and guest artist Ariel Merivil (piano and voice).

Composer, conductor, organist, preacher, and teacher Tom Trenney has been blessed to serve as Minister of Music to First-Plymouth Church in Lincoln, Nebraska, since 2009.  In 2019, he became Associate Professor of Music and Director of Choirs at Nebraska Wesleyan University.  Tom’s choirs have been honored to perform for state, regional, and national conventions of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), and they have been award winners in the American Prize for choral ensembles.  He serves as Music in Worship Chair for Midwest ACDA.

Tom has been a featured performer at churches, colleges, and concert halls across the country including Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, Seattle’s Benaroya Hall, Kansas City’s Kauffman Center, Kennedy Center, and Carnegie Hall.  His choral compositions are published by Augsburg Fortress, Beckenhorst Press, Choristers Guild, E.C. Schirmer/Galaxy, Morningstar, Musicspoke, Pavane, and G. Schirmer.  His piece “From Generation to Generation” won the Raabe Prize from the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians in 2023.

A graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Music and the Eastman School of Music, Tom is grateful for the inspiration of his teachers and mentors – especially Anton Armstrong, David Davidson, Craig Hella Johnson, (Mister) Fred Rogers, William Weinert, Anne Wilson and Todd Wilson.



Conference Registrants are welcome to attend the following sessions and opt to rehearse and sing with the combined choirs for the “Big Sing.”  Music will be provided.

The registration deadline is January 10, 2024.


Tuesday, January 16

1:00-2:15 PM

Furman Belle Voci (Treble Choir) Open Rehearsal w/ Tom TrenneyHarper Hall

2:30-3:30 PM

Plenary Session: “A Beautiful Day in the Choir (Ensemble) Room”Daniel Recital Hall
Considering the lessons learned in Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood and making them our foundation to build stronger musical communities.

4:00-6:00 PM

Furman Singers Open Rehearsal w/ Tom TrenneyHarper Hall


Wednesday, January 17

2:30-3:20 PM

Plenary Session: “An Annotated Rehearsal” – Furman Chamber Choir & Tom Trenney – Harper Hall
Teaching choirs to express both the music and the message. Rehearsal techniques, score study, preparation, interpretation, teaching the music in a piece.

7:00-9:00 PM

Combined Choirs Rehearsal @ First Baptist Greenville Sanctuary
We Shall Overcome, arr. Trenney
How Firm A Foundation, arr. Trenney
It is Well With My Soul, arr. Trenney

Plenary Session: “Preaching From the Choir”  – Tom Trenney
Remembering our vocation and recommitting to our calling as church musicians.


Thursday, January 18

12:00 PM

Luncheon with Tom Trenney and Ariel Merivil (Must RSVP in advance, $15 at the door) – Hartness Pavilion (Furman Dining Hall)

4:00-5:30 PM

“Big Sing” Rehearsal with Furman Singers – Daniel Memorial Chapel

6:00 PM

“Big Sing” – Hymn Sing – Daniel Memorial Chapel
Combined Sanctuary Choirs, Furman Singers, Tom Trenney, Ariel Merivil, Charles Tompkins

Registration Form

Registration Deadline – January 10, 2024

Hotel Information

Several hotels in Downtown Greenville and Travelers Rest offer discounts for Furman events. For a list of these hotels, go to this page on the Furman website.


For questions, contact the Furman Music Office at:
Phone: 864.294.2086
E-mail: furmanmusicadmin@furman.edu

Furman University - Daniel Music Building