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

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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What to Wear: Let’s Get Practical

What to Wear: Let’s Get Practical

Kelsey Menehan | Performance

One choral leader described setting a concert attire policy as “somewhere near getting a root canal.” Ouch! We asked choruses—and the choral apparel companies that clothe them—to give us their best advice for making the process as pain-free as possible.  Read more

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Dressing Your Chorus

Dressing Your Chorus

Kelsey Menehan | Performance

Whether your chorus has 10 singers or 110, what those singers wear matters. The overall look should complement, not distract from, the music and communicate a certain level of seriousness, or as one choral conductor quipped, “not like you just walked in off the street.”  Read more

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Inspired: Wendy Moy with Dennis Coleman

Inspired: Wendy Moy with Dennis Coleman

Mike Rowan | Careers, Community Outreach, Diversity, History, Impact/Value, Profile

After serving as a guest conductor with the Seattle Women's Chorus (SWC), Wendy Moy became friends with Dennis Coleman, who served as the artistic director for all of SWC's 14 years, as well as 35 years with the Seattle Men's Chorus. Now the director of choral activities and music education at Connecticut College and co-artistic director of Chorosynthesis Singers, Wendy spoke with the man she calls one of her mentors in the wake of his retirement about his career and the future of the choral field. Read more

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Robert Shaw and the Brahms Requiem

Robert Shaw and the Brahms Requiem

Don Lee | Conducting, History, Profile, Repertoire, Research/Data, Symphonic

No other piece of music captivated iconic conductor Robert Shaw more than the Brahms  Requiem. A symposium presented by Chorus America in honor of the Shaw centenary explored the conductor’s deep connection to this masterwork—and what it reveals about his approach to music and his legacy. Read more

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Meet A Member: Tom Dooling, First Presbyterian Church San Antonio

Meet A Member: Tom Dooling, First Presbyterian Church San Antonio

Mike Rowan | Careers, Conducting, Profile

“There are so many commonalities between directing a community choir and the church music experience,” says Tom Dooling of First Presbyterian Church San Antonio.  Read more

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Working with Multicultural Choirs: Reflections after 25 Years

Working with Multicultural Choirs: Reflections after 25 Years

Kelsey Menehan | Audiences, Community Outreach, Diversity, Management/Leadership, Marketing/Public Relations, Operations, Participation, Profile, Repertoire

As a graduate conducting student at Temple University in the 1980s, Diana V. Saez recalls being frustrated that there was no mention of Latin American composers—except for the famous composers Villalobos from Brazil and Ginastera from Argentina. When she moved to Washington DC, in 1990, she found a bustling choral music scene, with a wide variety of choruses. But Latin American music was not part of the standard repertoire. Read more

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My First German Requiem

My First German Requiem

Matthew Sigman | Audiences, Impact/Value, Performance, Symphonic

After performing the Brahms Requiem as the centerpiece of Chorus America’s Robert Shaw Centenary Symposium in mid-April, the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus brought the work to New York for a special performance at Carnegie Hall. Music journalist Matthew Sigman attended the New York performance—which also included Jonathan Leshnoff’s newly-commissioned work Zohar—and reflects on his experience hearing the masterpiece for the first time. Read more

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The Brahms Requiem: Questions for the Conductor

The Brahms Requiem: Questions for the Conductor

Don Lee | Conducting, Rehearsal, Repertoire, Symphonic

The Brahms Requiem served as the artistic focal point of Chorus America’s Robert Shaw Centenary Symposium, which centered around the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus’s April 2016 performance of this masterwork. Symposium faculty shared their thoughts on issues conductors ought to address as they prepare the piece. Read more

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Noteworthy: A Reminder that "Art Should Not Always Be Comfortable"

Noteworthy: A Reminder that "Art Should Not Always Be Comfortable"

Don Lee | Composing/Commissioning, Repertoire

A powerful piece based on the dying words of African-American men killed in police encounters is an opportunity to reflect on universal issues of love, loss, and our shared humanity. Read more

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Resources

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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Restoring the Motets of Palestrina, Lassus, and Victoria for Women’s Chorus

Restoring the Motets of Palestrina, Lassus, and Victoria for Women’s Chorus

Kate Longo | Conducting, Repertoire

With this issue of the Research Memorandum Series, Matthew Bumbach assumes the editorship. The issue focuses on restoring Renaissance repertoire for women’s ensembles using the convent archives of Spain. Compiled by Kathryn Longo. Read more

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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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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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How to Engage Your Audiences (Yes, Plural!)

How to Engage Your Audiences (Yes, Plural!)

admin_ca | Audiences

To achieve patron engagement and loyalty, you need a core strategy by which to evaluate, understand, and serve your audiences. In this webinar, Matt Lehrman of Audience Avenue, LLC presents a framework that empowers a “whole-organization approach” to building, sorting, and targeting the different audiences your chorus wants to reach. He’ll focus on how to drive deep loyalty, how to inspire return attendance, how to pursue awareness and participation from entirely new population segments, and how to deliver extraordinary experiences that really matter 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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Events

Song of the Universal: Music of Corigliano, Whitacre, Gjeilo

Song of the Universal: Music of Corigliano, Whitacre, Gjeilo

1620 Gough Street, San Francisco, between Austin Alley and Bush Streets

Helene Whitson | Performance

  The San Francisco Lyric Chorus, under the direction of Music Director Robert Gurney, presents a concert of melody, poetry, and inspiration:  Song of the Universal: Music of Corigliano, Whitacre, and Gjeilo Read more

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Cantare Con Vivo presents "Sing & Rejoice!"

Cantare Con Vivo presents "Sing & Rejoice!"

Berkeley, CA

David Morales | Performance

This July, Cantare Con Vivo Artistic Director David Morales will direct a Cantare summer concert centered on music from the Christian church tradition.  Read more

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Song/Play

Song/Play

New York, NY

andrea@DCINY.org | Singing

DCINY welcomes back composers Francisco J. Núñez and Cristian Grases to the Carnegie Hall stage with a world premiere program featuring two brand new works created for youth voices featuring the Distinguished Concerts Orchestra and Singers. Florida Symphony Youth Orchestras directed by Hanrich Claassen performs works by Nancy Bloomer Deussen and Edvard Grieg. Read more

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Spirit Journey

Spirit Journey

New York, NY

andrea@DCINY.org | Singing

Featuring the Distinguished Concerts Singers and Orchestra, Composer/Conductor Pepper Choplin leads his work Our Father: A Journey through the Lord’s Prayer. Co-Conductors Kevin McBethand Andy Waggoner lead choir and orchestra in a new world premiere by American composer Mark Hayes, Spirit Suite 1 & 2. Read more

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Gabriel Faure : Requiem

Gabriel Faure : Requiem

Washington, DC.

Caryn Fraim |

Gabriel Fauré: Requiem Florent Schmitt: Psalm 47 Lili Boulanger: Psalm 24 “La terre appartient à l’Éternel" Read more

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Into the Light

Into the Light

Washington, DC.

Caryn Fraim |

Music. Space. Resonance Read more

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Living the Dream...Singing the Dream

Living the Dream...Singing the Dream

Washington, DC.

Caryn Fraim |

31st Annual Choral Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  Read more

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A Family Christmas

A Family Christmas

Washington, DC.

Caryn Fraim |

For the young and the young at heart (Ages 5 and up) Read more

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A Family Christmas

A Family Christmas

Alexandria, VA

Caryn Fraim |

For the young and the young at heart (Ages 5 and up) Read more

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Songs of the Season: Christmas with Choral Arts

Songs of the Season: Christmas with Choral Arts

Washington, DC

Caryn Fraim |

Celebrate this Christmas with the Choral Arts Society of Washington! 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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