Conducting & Performing

Chorus America advances the artistry of choruses by providing masterclasses for choral conductors, sessions on repertoire and performance practice, convenings of artistic directors, research on conducting careers and transitions, information on performance trends and innovations, and forums for discussion of artistic issues.

Articles

Repertoire for a Cause: Listen to the Earth Project

Repertoire for a Cause: Listen to the Earth Project

Mike Rowan | Civic Engagement, Composing/Commissioning, Impact/Value, Repertoire

This article is part of a series highlighting new choral repertoire that can be used by a wide range of choirs to address different community issues. Read more

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Meet A Member: Alexander Lloyd Blake, Tonality

Meet A Member: Alexander Lloyd Blake, Tonality

Mike Rowan | Community Outreach, Conducting, Diversity, Profile

Alexander Lloyd Blake has plenty of jobs to keep himself busy. Blake is the choir director for the LA County High School for the Arts, and principal assistant conductor of the National Children's Chorus’ Los Angeles ensemble. But that’s not all. “I'm an assistant conductor at First Congregational Church LA—that's a new one,” Blake recounts. “And I'm studying for my qualifying exams for my doctorate in choral conducting at USC.” Read more

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Choral Conductors Today: Responding to a Shifting Career Model

Choral Conductors Today: Responding to a Shifting Career Model

Don Lee | CA News, Careers, Conducting, Impact/Value, Research/Data

In an effort to renew our understanding of the roles, responsibilities, and challenges choral conductors encounter and how they affect the choral ecosystem, Chorus America undertook a new study, updating survey findings from a decade ago. The results highlight both important challenges and reasons to feel confident about the health of the profession.  Read more

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Repertoire for a Cause: The Justice Choir Songbook

Repertoire for a Cause: The Justice Choir Songbook

Mike Rowan | Civic Engagement, Community Outreach, Composing/Commissioning, Diversity, Participation, Repertoire

This article is part of a series highlighting new choral repertoire that can be used by a wide range of choirs to address different community issues. Read more

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Morten Lauridsen and His Illuminating Impact

Morten Lauridsen and His Illuminating Impact

Thomas May | Composing/Commissioning, History, Impact/Value, Profile, Repertoire

In the last decade of the 20th century, the composer Morten Lauridsen wrote a series of pieces while serving a residency for the Los Angeles Master Chorale that have had a lasting and international impact. This year the choral world celebrates the 20th anniversary of the largest of these milestones, Lux Aeterna. What has given the Lauridsen aesthetic its power to connect and attract? And why does it continue to move performers, composers, and listeners? Read more

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The Emerging Art of Choral Theater

The Emerging Art of Choral Theater

Judith Malafronte | Impact/Value, Innovation, Performance, Repertoire, Technology, Venue

Is this growing trend a gimmick? Or a glimpse of the future? Read more

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50 Years in Washington: An Interview with Robert Shafer

50 Years in Washington: An Interview with Robert Shafer

Michael Doan | Careers, Profile

Choral conductor Robert Shafer reflects on his many experiences over the span of his 50 years in the Washington, DC choral community with choral singer and writer Michael Doan. Read more

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Meet A Member: David Hagen, Alaska Chamber Singers

Meet A Member: David Hagen, Alaska Chamber Singers

Mike Rowan | Careers, Profile

David Hagen has a deep sense of belonging to the place he was raised. “I'm just an Alaska lover,” he says. “I love the wilderness, and it's something that's a critical part of my life.” Read more

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Responding to Tragedy

Responding to Tragedy

Don Lee | Civic Engagement, Community Outreach, Diversity, Impact/Value, Management/Leadership

In the wake of terrible events, choruses and choral leaders have found ways to be part of the response and healing process. Read more

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Meet A Member: Kirke Mechem, Composer, Author, Librettist

Meet A Member: Kirke Mechem, Composer, Author, Librettist

Mike Rowan | Careers, Composing/Commissioning, Education, History, Profile

At 91, Kansas-born Kirke Mechem has often been called “the dean of American choral composers.” That does not mean he is slowing down, however. Read more

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Resources

Choral Conductors Today: Key Findings from the 2017 Report

Choral Conductors Today: Key Findings from the 2017 Report

Roland Kushner | Careers, Conducting, Education, General, Management/Leadership, Recruitment, Research/Data

Understanding more about choral conducting as an occupation can help choral conductors plan their careers and choral leaders make better decisions. This report uses data drawn from the survey responses of more than 600 conductors to examine conductors' career paths, training, responsibilities, salaries, and more. These key findings provide an overview of both important challenges and reasons to feel confident about the health of the profession, as well as developments since Chorus America's first choral conductor survey over a decade ago. Access the full report, available to Chorus America members, here.  Read more

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Choral Conductors Today: An Updated Report

Choral Conductors Today: An Updated Report

A Comparison of 2017 and 2005 Findings

Roland Kushner | Careers, Conducting, Education, Management/Leadership, Recruitment, Research/Data

Understanding more about choral conducting as an occupation can help choral conductors plan their careers and choral leaders make better decisions. This report uses data drawn from the survey responses of more than 600 conductors to examine conductors' career paths, training, responsibilities, salaries, and more. The full report highlights both important challenges and reasons to feel confident about the health of the profession, as well as updating and tracking data from Chorus America's first choral conductor survey over a decade ago. Read more

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Herbert Howells in America: Three Commissions

Herbert Howells in America: Three Commissions

Chorus America Staff | Conducting, Repertoire

With this issue of the American Choral Review, Timothy Newton assumes the editorship. The lead article examines new perspectives on Howells’ compositional activity in America by presenting three case studies. The issue also includes a concert report from Hamburg's Elbphilharmonie, and reviews of recent recordings The Wonder of Christmas and The ABC’s of Russian Diction. Read more

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The Use of Movement in Choral Conducting and Rehearsing

The Use of Movement in Choral Conducting and Rehearsing

Chorus America Staff | Conducting, Rehearsal, Repertoire, Research/Data, Technique/Tool

This issue of the Research Memorandum Series focuses on resources pertaining to movement education in both the choral rehearsal and in teaching choral conducting. After a brief background on movement methodologies, author Caron Daley lists resources pertaining to the choral rehearsal and choral conducting. Read more

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Choral Compositions by John Weinzweig and John Beckwith

Choral Compositions by John Weinzweig and John Beckwith

Chorus America Staff | Repertoire, Research/Data

This issue of the Research Memorandum Series focuses on the choral output of two influential Canadian composers - John Weinzwieg and John Beckwith. Although their choral output is relatively small in relation to their other output, it has had significant impact both in Canada and abroad. A brief biography of each composer is given before the listing of their choral compositions. Read more

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Singer Information Form

Singer Information Form

Chorus America Staff | General, Operations, Performance, Sample/Template, Singing

Use this singer information form template to gather information during the audition process.  Read more

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Arvo Part

Arvo Part

Chorus America Staff | History, Repertoire, Research/Data

This issue of the Research Memorandum Series focuses on the compositions of internationally known composer Arvo Pärt. After a brief biography of the world renowned Estonian composer, compiler Mark Vuorinen lists Pärt’s complete current choral compositions, both unaccompanied and accompanied. This issue places into one convenient document the choral output of this seminal artist. Read more

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Conducting Pedagogy: A Resource Reference Guide of Conducting Literature and Textbooks

Conducting Pedagogy: A Resource Reference Guide of Conducting Literature and Textbooks

Chorus America Staff | Conducting, Research/Data, Technique/Tool

Research Memorandum Series No. 206 This issue of the Research Memorandum Series includes a compilation of resources geared towards both the conducting pedagogue and the conductor seeking knowledge and self-improvement. It also provides an overview of the different types of conducting literature that exists. Read more

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Theodore Thomas: Building American Orchestras and Choirs

Theodore Thomas: Building American Orchestras and Choirs

Chorus America Staff | Conducting, Impact/Value

This issue of the American Choral Review examines the life and legacy of little-known conductor Theodore Thomas, who in the mid 19th-century almost single-handedly built two of the premiere orchestras in the country and was one of the first conductors to treat the chorus as a serious ensemble, fostering performances of large choral-orchestral works. Read more

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The Rediscovery of Zakaria Paliashvili’s Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom

The Rediscovery of Zakaria Paliashvili’s Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom

Chorus America Staff | Composing/Commissioning, History, Repertoire, Research/Data

This issue of the American Choral Review looks at composer Zakaria Paliashvili's setting of Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom. Co-authors John A. Graham and Parker Jayne explore Paliashvili's Georgian influences and how his version fell into obscurity after the Russain Revolution. Read more

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Events

Handel's "Messiah"

Handel's "Messiah"

118 S. Palafox St., Pensacola, FL

Choral Society ... | Performance

Start your holiday season with Choral Society of Pensacola’s annual performance of Handel’s Messiah. Read more

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Holiday Concert: The Promise of Living

Holiday Concert: The Promise of Living

Berkeley CA

Pacific Edge Voices | Performance

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Holiday Concert: The Promise of Living

Holiday Concert: The Promise of Living

San Francisco CA

Pacific Edge Voices | Performance

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Pioneer Valley Symphony Chorus presents "and the birds will keep singing": Choral Music of the Spanish-Speaking World

Pioneer Valley Symphony Chorus presents "and the birds will keep singing": Choral Music of the Spanish-Speaking World

Greenfield, MA

J Harvey | Adults/Seniors, General, Performance

Join us for an afternoon of music by composers from the Spanish-speaking world, including works by Ariel Ramirez, Pablo Casals, Maria Guinand, Tomas Luis de Victoria, and more. Featuring the PVS Chorus, PVS Chamber Choir, and guitarist Michael Nix. A portion of the ticket sales will go to Nueva Esperanza, a local non-profit, in support of hurricane relief efforts in Puerto Rico. https://www.pvsoc.org/ Read more

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The 9th World Peace Choral Festival

The 9th World Peace Choral Festival

Vienna, Austria

World Peace Cho... | Adults/Seniors, Awards, Children/Youth, Performance, Singing

"Coming together to sing, singing for a better future", the World Peace Choral Festival is organized annually in Vienna in the 2nd half of July, supported by the Austrian federal government authorities, the city government of Vienna, the Vienna Boys Choir, the United Nations Headquarters in Vienna, NGOs, enterprises and a series of personalities. Since its premiere in August 2010, choirs from Europe, Asia, North America and Africa have participated at the festival and brought beautiful memory back home. For more information please visit www.wpcf.at or write info@wpcf.at Read more

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Nutcracker Production Premiered by LA Youth Ballet Stars Joffrey Ballet Principal Dancers and St. Mel School Children’s Choir

Nutcracker Production Premiered by LA Youth Ballet Stars Joffrey Ballet Principal Dancers and St. Mel School Children’s Choir

216 North Brand Blvd., Glendale, CA 91203

sgordon823 | Audiences, Children/Youth, Performance

Los Angeles Youth Ballet presents the world premiere of a new production of The Nutcracker by award-winning choreographer Andrea Paris-Gutierrez starring Joffrey Ballet principal dancers Jeraldine Mendoza (Sugar Plum Fairy) and Dylan Gutierrez (Sugar Plum Fairy's Cavalier) in three performances, Friday, December 22, 7 pm, and Saturday, December 23, 2 pm and 7 pm, at Glendale’s Alex Theatre.  Adding to the rich compendium of this beloved holiday tradition, Paris-Gutierrez’s new youth-inspired version of the two-act ballet, featuring Tchaikovsky’s quintessential score, includes traditional influences as well as Paris-Gutierrez’s distinctive point of view as the Artistic Director of the lauded LA Youth Ballet and an experienced mentor of young dancers.  Darrion Sellman, a 13-year-old rising dance star who moved from Virginia to Los Angeles specifically to train with Paris-Gutierrez and LA Youth Ballet, is cast as the Nutcracker.  Annie Bernstein and Jana Teruel alternate in the role of Clara; Malcolm McLaurin Takumi and Marcel Ramirez alternate in the role of as Fritz, Clara’s brother.  Children and parents at the party, soldiers, Mouse King, mice, snowflakes, flowers and dolls are performed by the accomplished dancers of LA Youth Ballet.  St. Mel School Children’s Choir, led by Director Susie Penney, provides live vocals for the performances.   Mendoza and Gutierrez – who bring to their roles exceptional artistry and emotional depth – appear courtesy of Chicago’s Joffrey Ballet.  Mendoza is hailed for dancing that is “always masterfully-rendered” (California Review), and Gutierrez is lauded for his “powerful solos,” (Chicago Tribune).  LA Youth Ballet, the premier ensemble of the Los Angeles Ballet Academy, is an advanced pre-professional student ensemble for accomplished classical dancers ages 13-19.  Many of its alumni have garnered numerous awards and have gone on to professional careers with some of the world’s leading ballet companies and musical theatre productions around the country.      Tickets start at $25 and are available through the Alex Theatre Box Office 818.243.2539 or visit www.alextheatre.org.  The Alex Theatre is located at 216 North Brand Boulevard, Glendale CA 91203  Read more

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Capture the Holiday Spirit with Schola Cantorum Silicon Valley

Capture the Holiday Spirit with Schola Cantorum Silicon Valley

Mountain View, CA

Mary Powell | Audiences

Schola Cantorum Silicon Valley presents “Warmest Christmas Traditions” on Sunday, December 17 at 3:00 pm, at the Mountain View Center for the Performing Arts, 500 Castro Street, Mountain View.  Read more

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Messiah Choral Symposium & Masterclass

Messiah Choral Symposium & Masterclass

Tampa, FL

The Master Chor... | Careers, Conducting, Education, Participation, Performance, Professional, Singing

Led by Doreen Rao, the MCTB Messiah Symposium features morning classes focused on score preparation, performance practices and conducting techniques as these relate specifically to teaching and performing Handel’s Messiah. Following a lunch break, the Choral Symposium will feature a public Conducting Masterclass led by Doreen Rao and joined by special guest Michael Francis (Florida Orchestra's Music Director) and The Master Chorale Ensemble Singers. Read more

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The Morning Star!

The Morning Star!

Tampa, FL

The Master Chor... | Adults/Seniors, Performance

Celebrating the Morning Star as a symbol of hope, a sign of courage and spiritual renewal.  The Master Chorale Ensemble Singers will perform the music of J. S. Bach, Felix Mendelssohn, arvo Pärt, Ola Gjeilo, and Roberto Sierra with music based on the well known theme, How brightly shines the morning star... The Master Chorale Outreach Choir will join in with a “mini Messiah” sing-along to top both these spiritually inspired concerts conducted by Doreen Rao as a preview of the larger Messiah performances later on December 21, 22 & 23 with The Florida Orchestra.  Like the Morning Star traditions worldwide, the celebratory concerts represent many musical stars in multiple traditions and cultures, from Bach to the Baltics. Performances: Friday, December 1 at 8:00 pm First Presbyterian Church on Beach Drive, St. Petersburg Complementary Valet   Sponsored by the First Presbyterian Church, St. Pete Sunday, December 3 at 3:00 pm St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Tampa Tickets:  Adults $20 (available at the door and online in advance) Students $15 at the door with valid student ID Read more

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The Morning Star!

The Morning Star!

St. Petersburg, FL

The Master Chor... | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Performance, Singing

Celebrating the Morning Star as a symbol of hope, a sign of courage and spiritual renewal.  The Master Chorale Ensemble Singers will perform the music of J. S. Bach, Felix Mendelssohn, arvo Pärt, Ola Gjeilo, and Roberto Sierra with music based on the well known theme, How brightly shines the morning star... The Master Chorale Outreach Choir will join in with a “mini Messiah” sing-along to top both these spiritually inspired concerts conducted by Doreen Rao as a preview of the larger Messiah performances later on December 21, 22 & 23 with The Florida Orchestra.  Like the Morning Star traditions worldwide, the celebratory concerts represent many musical stars in multiple traditions and cultures, from Bach to the Baltics. Performances: Friday, December 1 at 8:00 pm First Presbyterian Church on Beach Drive, St. Petersburg Complementary Valet   Sponsored by the First Presbyterian Church, St. Pete Sunday, December 3 at 3:00 pm St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Tampa Tickets:  Adults $20 (available at the door and online in advance) Students $15 at the door with valid student ID Read more

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Dialogue

Questions During Rehearsal?

Questions During Rehearsal?

Anonymous | Rehearsal, Singing

Conductors, do you let your singers ask questions during rehearsal? What are the pros and cons? Read more

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