January 16th, 2021 – 9am-5pm (with breaks!)

Sing, learn, discuss, grow!


Join us as we gather virtually for a day of learning about the history of African American spirituals, how they have driven social justice efforts over the decades, and what they mean for us now.


This 3rd Annual MLK JanFest celebration, co-hosted by the United Church of Santa Fe and Coro Lux, will be held on January 16th, 2021 from 9am-5pm Mountain Time – with several breaks!


Can’t make it live? No problem!

Your ticket gives you on-demand access to these sessions until January 31st so you can participate when it works best for YOU!


Cost: $37.50

A portion of the ticket proceeds will go to benefit the NAACP’s College Fund.

Click here to purchase tickets!

Session Schedule

Rise and Shine! – 9am – 10:45am MT

  • Opening welcome – The Rev. Talitha Arnold & Prof. Bradley Ellingboe
  • Getting the voice going – Dr. Stevie Springer
  • Music Virtual Rehearsal – Dr. Rollo Dilworth

Mental and Physical Health – 11:15am – 12:30pm MT

  • Medical Perspectives: Singing During the Pandemic – Dr. Joe Alcorn
  • Music and Mental Health – The Rev. Talitha Arnold and Prof. Bradley Ellingboe

Music and Social Justice – 1:15-3:30pm MT

  • Spirituals and Gospel Songs: Singing in a Strange Time – Dr. James Abbington
  • Singing in a Strange Land – Dr. Rollo Dilworth

Finale – 4:15pm MT

  • Sing-a-long of music learned during the morning session, led by Dr. Dilworth
  • Final Closing – The Rev. Talitha Arnold and Prof. Bradley Ellingboe

Presenter Bios

Dr. Rollo Dilworth

Dr. Dilworth holds degree from Case Western Reserve, the University of Missouri and the doctorate from Northwestern University. More than 150 of Dilworth’s choral compositions and arrangements have been published.  He has authored 3 books of choral warm up exercises intended for elementary and secondary choral ensembles.

A frequent presenter at local, state, regional and national conferences, Dilworth has conducted 43 all-state choirs at various levels. He has most recently appeared as guest conductor for international choral festivals and master classes in Australia, Canada, Taiwan, Ireland, and China as well as Singapore, Austria and France.

Dilworth is currently National Board Chair for Chorus America. He also holds memberships with the American Choral Directors Association, the National Association for Music Education, the National Association of Negro Musicians and the American Society of Composers, Authors, and Publishers (ASCAP). In 2017, he received the Temple University Faculty Award for Research and Creative Achievement.

Dr. James Abbington

Born in Gary, West Virginia, James Abbington received his musical education at Morehouse College (BA) and the University of Michigan (MMus, DMA). He is currently Associate Professor of Church Music and Worship at Candler School of Theology, Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia and adjunct professor of Church Music at Morehouse College in Atlanta. Abbington is a member of the historic Friendship Baptist Church in Atlanta where he the Director of Music Ministries and Church Organist.

Abbington was Chair of the Core Committee for the historic One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism: An African American Ecumenical Hymnal released in 2018. He is the author of numerous articles and publications.

In 2015 Abbington was honored by The Hymn Society in the United States and Canada by being named a Fellow of The Hymn Society. This award, the highest honor given by the organization, was conferred because of Abbingtons work as a scholar, editor, and practitioner of church music with a particular emphasis on African-American congregational song. He is the second Black to receive this honor; the first was Harry T. Burleigh, pioneer of the arranged and concert Negro spiritual in 1944.

Dr. Joseph Alcorn

Dr. Alcorn is a Pomona College grad, attended University of Arizona Medical school and then trained at the University of Missouri and UCSD where he joined the faculty practicing clinical medicine and using the tools of molecular biology to explore the determinants of liver scarring and regeneration. He has been in academic and clinical practice in the Albuquerque area for nearly thirty years and in choral groups most of that time.

The Rev. Talitha Arnold

The Rev. Talitha Arnold is Senior Minister of the United Church of Santa Fe, a progressive United Church of Christ congregation known for its worship, music, community outreach, and interfaith leadership. A graduate of Pomona College and Yale Divinity School, she also served as Yale’s Interim Associate Chaplain, as well as congregations in Arizona and Connecticut. Author of Worship for Vital Congregations (Pilgrim Press) and a guest speaker for the Berkshire Choral Festival, Yale’s Institute of Sacred Music, NPR’s All Things Considered, and the Santa Fe Symphony, she is also a founding member of the National Action Alliance for Suicide Prevention.

Dr. Stevie DeJuan Springer

Dr. Springer is native of New York City by way of Texas, and now resides in New Mexico. He earned a Bachelor’s in Fine Arts from Huston-Tillotson University, a Masters in Music from the University of New Mexico, and a PhD from the University of the Southwest with a focus in Chronic Pain and Occupational Therapy. He currently hosts a Wellness show on KRQE-TV (Fox), titled “Wise and Well with Dr. Stevie DeJuan Springer.”  Dr. Springer has a private music academy, and is adjunct faculty at the University of New Mexico, where he leads the UNM Gospel Choir.

Prof. Bradley Ellingboe

Prof. Bradley Ellingboe has led a wide-ranging career in the world of singing, including accomplishments as a choral conductor, soloist, composer, scholar, and teacher.

He retired from teaching in 2015 after serving on the faculty of the University of New Mexico for 30 years, where he was Director of Choral Activities, Professor of Music, and Regents Lecturer.  He is a graduate of Saint Olaf College and the Eastman School of Music and lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico, with his wife Karen. They are the parents of three children and have four grandchildren. Ellingboe is Director of Choirs at the United Church of Santa Fe and founder and artistic director of Albuquerque’s Coro Lux (“chorus of light”).