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

Star-Spangled Mythbusting

Star-Spangled Mythbusting

Correcting the History of America’s National Anthem

Mark Clague | Civic Engagement, Composing/Commissioning, History, Repertoire

For the 200th anniversary of “The Star-Spangled Banner,” a musicologist takes a closer look at the history of the anthem. Read more

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Member Spotlight: Gretchen Kuhrmann

Member Spotlight: Gretchen Kuhrmann

How Choralis Attracts Young People

Michael Doan | Recruitment, Singing

Gretchen Kuhrmann is the director of Choralis, a Northern Virginia-based chorus that will perform Bob Chilcott’s Requiem at the Chorus America conference on June 12. Chorus America asked her about the concert and her program to train and recruit young singers. Read more

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Noteworthy: A Cross-Cultural Collaboration Based on a Centuries-Old Sufi Text

Noteworthy: A Cross-Cultural Collaboration Based on a Centuries-Old Sufi Text

Don Lee | Composing/Commissioning, Repertoire

Jon Washburn's long-time fascination with the work of the Sufi poet Rumi led to a new collaboration inspired by the poet's 12th-century words. Read more

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Member Spotlight: Joyce Garrett

Member Spotlight: Joyce Garrett

“Choir is a tool for transforming lives.”

Kelsey Menehan | Diversity, Education, Schools, Singing

Joyce Garrett knew from a young age that she wanted to work with choirs. What she didn't realize was that this desire would lead her to change the lives of hundreds of high school students along the way.  Read more

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Community Sings

Community Sings

How to Get the Whole Room Singing

Kelsey Menehan | Conducting, Impact/Value, Participation, Singing

Experienced song leaders share what they've learned about the special magic of bringing together a group of ordinary people in song. Read more

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Finding Freedom through Song

Finding Freedom through Song

Don Lee | Community Outreach, Impact/Value, Performance, Singing

Prison choirs help inmates reconnect with their self-worth and build a sense of community –both inside and outside prison walls. Read more

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Noteworthy: A Romantic Era Masterpiece by a Female Composer

Noteworthy: A Romantic Era Masterpiece by a Female Composer

Don Lee | Composing/Commissioning, Repertoire

While pursuing one of his favorite pastimes, conductor Mark Shapiro happened upon a groundbreaking piece from the Romantic era. Read more

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Noteworthy:  The Centennial of R. Nathaniel Dett's "Characteristic Anthem"

Noteworthy: The Centennial of R. Nathaniel Dett's "Characteristic Anthem"

Don Lee | Composing/Commissioning, Repertoire

The influence of R. Nathaniel Dett has shaped Roland Carter's career ever since Carter took his first piano lessons under the watchful gaze of Dett's picture. Now Professor Emeritus at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga, Carter calls our attention to the 2014 centennial of Dett's "Listen to the Lambs." Read more

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Carrying on a Family Tradition of Carol Writing

Carrying on a Family Tradition of Carol Writing

Kelsey Menehan | Composing/Commissioning, Conducting, Families, General, History, Impact/Value, Participation, Performance, Profile, Repertoire

As a young girl, Abbie Betinis noticed that singing “Caroling, Caroling” during the holidays always brought tears to her grandpa’s eyes. Later she would learn that the famous carol was one of many composed by her great uncle Alfred Burt, who was carrying on a family tradition of carol writing begun by his father, the Rev. Bates Burt. In 2001, Betinis, by then a composer herself, decided to pick up the family carol writing tradition. 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

Fairfield County Chorale Presents Handel's Messiah

Fairfield County Chorale Presents Handel's Messiah

125 East Ave, Norwalk, CT

jromano | Performance, Singing, Symphonic

Celebrate the holidays with a Sunday afternoon concert of Handel's Messiah, December 10th at 3:00pm Norwalk Concert Hall, Norwalk, CT. Read more

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Christmas Concert - Diablo Choral Artists

Christmas Concert - Diablo Choral Artists

1601 Mary Drive, Pleasant Hill, CA

DiabloChoralArtists | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Performance, Singing

Christmas concert Read more

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Christmas Concert - Diablo Choral Artists

Christmas Concert - Diablo Choral Artists

55 Eckley Lane, Walnut Creek, CA

DiabloChoralArtists | Adults/Seniors, Audiences, Performance, Singing

Christmas concert Read more

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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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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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