Announcing the Fall 2023 Hearn Innovator: Elias Dummer

The Dunn Center for Christian Music Studies (CCMS) in the Baylor School of Music is set to host Elias Dummer, recording artist and worship leader, for its fall 2023 Hearn Innovator Series. Elias’s public presentation will be held Monday, September 25, at 6 p.m., in Recital Hall II of Waco Hall, 624 Speight Ave.

A founding member of The City Harmonic, Dummer is a native of Ontario, Canada, where he was lead singer and songwriter for the contemporary Christian band. Winning the prestigious Juno Award (Canada’s Grammy) for “Christian Album of the Year” in 2012, along with nine GMA Covenant Awards, The City Harmonic released three critically acclaimed albums, charting success with songs like “I Have A Dream (It Feels Like Home),” “Mountaintop,” “Let There Be Light,” “Holy (Wedding Day),” and the seminal “Manifesto,” a declaration of faith, hope and unity that echoes in gatherings around the world to this day.

After eight years together, a desire to get back to serving their local churches led the band to lower the curtain in 2017. Meanwhile, he began training worship leaders in a church he helped to plant: The Village UMC near Nashville, focusing on empowering day-to-day discipleship through worship.

Recently, he has released a two-part solo album entitled The Work. He is co-founder of Worship Leader Research, where he and a team of practitioners and scholars are working on a collaborative study. Their work focuses on the behaviors of the primary contributors to contemporary worship and the attitudes and behaviors of local worship leaders towards them.

Dr. Shannan Baker, Postdoctoral Fellow in Music & Digital Humanities, works with Elias as another co-founder of Worship Leader Research. “As a marketer and music artist, Elias has a unique perspective on the contemporary worship music industry. He provides our team with insights that are normally difficult to obtain as researchers.” With an understanding of both Dummer’s expertise and the Church Music program, Dr. Baker commented on his visit to Baylor as a unique opportunity for Church Music students. “I am excited for students to learn from his experiences as a player in the industry and a member of our research group!”

The Monday evening presentation is free and open to the public.

Made possible by an endowment created through the generosity of Billy Ray Hearn, the Hearn Innovators in Christian Music Series is designed to bring innovators in the field of Christian music to Baylor's campus and facilitate close interaction between the guest presenter and Baylor's students. These special visitors may be involved in the practice, creation, or study of Christian music. Presenters are on campus for a three- to four-day residency and are available to speak in classes, make public presentations, and visit with students in small group settings.