Bloomington Sacred Harp

Shape note singing in and around Bloomington, Indiana since ~ 1978

We meet on 2nd and 4th Tuesdays each month and All-Day Singings…

Hi! We’re a group of Sacred Harp singers in Bloomington, IN. Sacred Harp, or shape note singing, is a tradition that dates back to our country’s founding. We gather regularly to sing with and for each other, with no accompanying instruments. What does it sound like? Like nothing you’ve ever heard before. However, if you’re familiar with Bluegrass music, you may recognize some tunes like, “Wayfaring Stranger,” or hymns like “What Wondrous Love is This?” Tunes range in style from rousing and jubilent, to contemplative, to mournful. Ours is a tradition that emphasizes participation and we welcome you to come join us and, yes, we’ll loan you a book!

One more thing, you don’t need to have a trained or “good” voice, just the desire to sing and learn! The best way to get a crash course in Sacred Harp is to attend an All-Day Singing. Lucky for you, one is coming up soon

YES, we are meeting. Masks are optional, BUT do not come if you have flu symptoms or a fever. We can’t wait to see you!

Bloomington singings are currently held on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month from 7-9 PM at Fairview United Methodist (600 W 6th) in Bloomington, Indiana. Enter on the side door (basement) on the southeast side. *During Holiday times, we often meet at the home across the alley (520 W 6th). Enter through the back gate.

New to Sacred Harp or “Shape Note” music? The best way to learn about this style is by attending an “All-Day Singing,” and one is about to happen…

The Rust Memorial All-Day Singing is Saturday, October 22nd at Fairview United Methodist from 10am-3pm with a potluck dinner on the grounds around noon. We may not have access to a stove, so plan accordingly. There will be areas to plug in a crockpot. (It’s traditional for local singers to provide food for the out of town visitors.) We will be singing from the Red Book (1991) and Shenandoah Harmony. Loaners are available. A Social will follow the singing from 6pm-9pm (520 W 6th St) at the home of Barb Lund. Please RSVP and help us share the event. Plan to arrive at 9am to register and enjoy some breakfast treats. MAP: 600 W 6th St, Bloomington, Indiana.

If you have limited time, we welcome visitors to simply stop by for as long as they choose.

Watch this video and interview with a member from the Bloomington group:

Loaner books are provided. We sing from both the 1991 revision The Sacred Harp and The Shenandoah Harmony. We even have some Cooper books we use periodically.

Two years ago, we sang at the Fountain Square Mall around Christmas time. Thanks to Randy West for the photos!

*Some photos posted by Ursula from our recent Rust Memorial All-Day Singing:
A few of us somehow still had voices after the 5-hour event!

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