18th Annual Alleluia Conference Brings Together Church Musicians

July 9, 2019
Alleluia conf.

Baylor University School of Music's 18th annual Alleluia Conference will be held July 16-19, 2019. Photo courtesy of Baylor Photography

Media Contact: Terry Goodrich, Baylor University Media and Public Relations, 254-710-3321
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by Brooke Hill, student newswriter, Baylor University Media & Public Relations

WACO, Texas (July 9, 2019) — Musicians travel from across to the world to Waco to refine their skills through hands-on learning and to rejuvenate through worship at Baylor University’s Alleluia Conference.

This year’s conference is July 16-19, and will consist of educational sessions, worship, concerts and a luncheon, where Thomas Coker, retired minister of music from South Main Baptist Church in Houston, will be honored with the 2019 Exemplary Leadership in Church Music award.

The Alleluia Conference has grown throughout the last 18 years from a small event that offered three breakout options to a conference with nearly 100 breakout sessions. The conference has increased both in the number of attendees and the diversity of those who attend, according to Randall Bradley, D.M.A., The Ben H. Williams Professor of Church Music and director of the church music program and the Center for Christian Music Studies in the School of Music. Attendees come from many different denominational backgrounds and travel to Texas from other states and countries.

Bradley said this year’s conference will have a special emphasis on universal worship design, which is focused on the accommodation of people with physical and mental disabilities and various other differences.

“This is a new field in worship studies, and we are eager to learn about it at this year’s conference,” Bradley said.

Carlos Ichter, pastor of music and worship at Tallowood Baptist Church in Houston, said Alleluia has proven to be the “must-attend” conference for him in his ministry and called the event a “one-of-a-kind” opportunity for church musicians.

“I find the reading sessions, workshops and camaraderie with musicians from across the denominational spectrum to be very helpful,” Icther said.
Cheryl Tarter, music minister at NorthHaven church in Norman, Oklahoma, has attended the Alleluia Conference every year since 2013. “The conference continues to be an incredible experience for me,” Tarter said. “It is inspirational, motivational, educational and informative. It is so helpful to hear people speak to concerns that I deal with in ministry.

“To pick my favorite thing about Alleluia would be impossible,” she said. “I enjoy the creativity and hard work that goes into planning the worship times and have learned there are many ways to utilize the gifts of others in worship. I also enjoy the workshops that seek to nudge and push me forward both in knowledge and practice. I look forward to Alleluia every year, knowing I will be inspired and challenged.”

Two concerts during the conference will be open to the public – the San Antonio Youth Chorale’s concert at 5:15 p.m. on Tuesday, July 16, in Powell Chapel, and the Centurymen concert at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 18, in Jones Music Hall.

For more information, visit the Baylor School of Music’s Alleluia Conference website.


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 17,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 80 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.


The Baylor University School of Music provides transformational experiences that prepare students for careers in music. Students thrive in a Christian environment characterized by a nurturing resident faculty, an unwavering pursuit of musical excellence, a global perspective, dedication to service and devotion to faith. They investigate the rich musical and cultural heritage of the past, develop superior musical skills and knowledge in the present, and explore and create new modes of musical expression for the future. While preparing for future leadership roles, students join with School of Music faculty in enhancing the quality of community life, enriching the larger culture and making Baylor a place in which heart, mind and soul coalesce. Baylor’s School of Music is a member of the National Association of Schools of Music and the Texas Association of Music Schools. Degree programs include bachelor’s and master’s degrees in performance, music education and academic majors, as well as doctoral degrees in church music. Degrees leading to the Bachelor of Music Education conform to certification requirements of the Texas Education Agency. Visit www.baylor.edu/music to learn more.