For IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WASHINGTON, DC, March 1, 2016 – The Board of Directors of the Children’s Chorus of Washington (CCW) is pleased to announce the appointment of Margaret Nomura Clark, as the organization’s new Artistic Director, starting August 1, 2016. She will succeed Joan Gregoryk, Founder and current Artistic Director, who will step down at the end of the 2015-2016 season after 20 years with the organization.
Ms. Clark was the Associate Artistic Director of the San Francisco Boys Chorus (SFBC) from 2009-2015, directing the Intermediate chorus and supervising all tiers of the SFBC Training Chorus School. Together with Artistic Director, Ian Robertson, she has worked closely with the San Francisco Symphony and in many different productions with the nationally acclaimed San Francisco Opera. Ms. Clark has performed and toured with her chorus at numerous festivals including the Grand Teton Music Festival. A highlight of her career was an invitation with the San Francisco Boys Chorus to sing at the inauguration of President Barack Obama in 2009.
In the fall of 2015, she was appointed to the choral faculty at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (SFCM) Pre-college Division and launched a choral program for instrumental students ages 7-18. In addition to her work with the SFBC and SFCM, Ms. Clark is currently the middle school music teacher at the Hamlin School for Girls in San Francisco. Over the past 11 years, she has created and established a choral program that now is a hallmark of the Hamlin School. Each week, over 100 students voluntarily come to rehearsals before school to sing in the chorus, and many of her former students have continued to sing in vocal ensembles after graduating from Hamlin. Ms. Clark’s choruses have consistently earned Gold medals and Unanimous Superior rankings at festivals and choral adjudications. In 2016, the Hamlin School Chorus was invited to be a showcase performance ensemble at the National Association of Independent School Conference in San Francisco.
Although a native to the San Francisco Bay Area, Ms. Clark has worked extensively with children’s choirs in Ohio, New York, and Japan and is a presenter and clinician for choral festivals and workshops. She earned her B.M.E. and M.M.E in Music Education from the Oberlin Conservatory and has studied choral conducting with Robert Shaw, Rodney Eichenberger, Henry Leck, and Doreen Rao. Coming from a family of educators and musicians, Ms. Clark is passionate about instilling a love for singing and music in children and is committed to helping each student develop as a musician and a performer.
Margaret Nomura Clark said, “I am honored and very excited to be selected as the Artistic Director of the Children’s Chorus of Washington. This is truly a dream come true as I have followed the Children’s Chorus of Washington over the years and am very aware of the standard of excellence and achievement established by Joan Gregoryk. My experience with the San Francisco Boys Chorus and my years in music education has prepared me for this next adventure, and I am looking forward to leading the Children’s Chorus of Washington in the next chapter of its development.”
Joan Gregoryk, Founder and Artistic Director, said: “The search committee did an outstanding job in selecting Margaret Clark to succeed me as Artistic Director of CCW! Margaret has the experience and the passion to insure that CCW continues to provide the highest level of music education and choral artistry for the young singers in the DC area.
Nancy Ortmeyer Kuhn, President, CCW Board of Directors, said: “We are all very excited to welcome Margaret Clark to the Washington, D.C. community. On behalf of the Board, I am very pleased that CCW will enjoy continued excellence under the baton of our new Artistic Director. We are thrilled with Ms. Clark’s vision for the future of CCW, and look forward to working with her to make that vision a reality.
About Children’s Chorus of Washington
The Children’s Chorus of Washington provides outstanding music education programs that engage and educate vocalists ages 6 to 18 from throughout metropolitan Washington, DC regardless of background, economic status, or prior experience. Emphasizing artistic excellence, responsibility, and personal development, CCW’s approach fosters choristers’ growth as young musicians and leaders.
Internationally recognized and critically acclaimed for its 20-year history of artistic excellence, CCW has reached five continents through domestic and international tours, recordings, and frequent appearances on public radio and television. CCW’s five auditioned ensembles perform frequently in self-produced concerts and a variety of public and private engagements throughout greater Washington, DC. These include a number of performances with leading music organizations at venues such as the Kennedy Center, the Library of Congress, and Washington National Cathedral. Recent engagements include a concert at the White House for President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama, Britten’s War Requiem with The Washington Chorus and Julian Wachner and this past fall, Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 with the National Symphony Orchestra and Choral Arts Society conducted by Maestro Christoph Eschenbach.
CCW shares its music education programs with the broader DC community through SING DC! which provides choral music training to under-served DC students at no cost to the schools or students, PREP Class for first-time singers, and Teacher Workshops. CCW powerfully influences youth choral repertoire through its history of commissions including Andrea Ramsey’s new work to be premiered in May 2016. CCW is one of only a few children’s choruses that regularly tours domestically and internationally. The group toured France in the summer of 2015.
CCW has been selected for the 2015/2016 Catalogue for Philanthropy as “one of the best small charities in the Greater Washington region.” In 2012 and again in 2014,CCW was recognized by the Washington Area Music Awards (“Wammies”) – Best Choral Group – and Greater Washington Area Choral Excellence Awards (“Ovations”) – Best Educational Outreach. CCW is the winner of the 2014 DC Mayor’s Arts Awards. For more information, visit childrenschorus.com.