February 15th, 2018Awards, Grants & Honors
After 25 years of dedicated service, Ron Carpenter, Artistic Director of the Phoenix Children’s Chorus (PCC) has announced his retirement. His final performance as Director of Encore, the organization’s most advanced high school choir, will be at the Sydney Opera House on June 22, 2018. He will stay on in an administrative capacity as the Artistic Director through the 2018-2019 concert season. Effective at the end of the 2018-2019 concert season, the 35th anniversary of the organization, Mr. Carpenter will pass the torch to the next, yet to be named, Artistic Director.
The Phoenix Children’s Chorus 2018-2019 concert season will be a farewell to Mr. Carpenter and a celebration of his impact on the Phoenix Children’s Chorus and the Valley of the Sun over the past 25 years. He has brought excellent choral music not only to thousands of PCC choristers and their families, but to the entire Phoenix Metropolitan Area. The season will culminate with a farewell performance in May 2019 that will include all 7 PCC choirs and an Alumni Choir conducted by Mr. Carpenter.
“I have been extremely blessed to serve these amazing young people and their families for the past 25 years, creating incredible music here at home and around the globe,” Mr. Carpenter says.
During the time Mr. Carpenter has been the Artistic Director, the Phoenix Children’s Chorus has grown from 40 choristers to nearly 400, becoming the largest choral organization of its kind in Arizona. He championed the PCC music literacy program, which has been very successful, and has assembled a world-class group of music educators that make up the talented artistic staff of PCC. While building the program to what it is today, the organization went from an after school program in the City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department to a 501(c)3 non-profit incorporation run by an all volunteer board of directors dedicated to realizing Mr. Carpenter’s vision.
After his final performance as the Director of Encore, the Phoenix Children’s Chorus will have performed concerts on five continents and throughout the United States in some of the world’s most prestigious concert venues and events including Carnegie Hall, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Beijing Concert Hall, Glasinov Concert Hall, St. Peter’s Basilica, Cologne Cathedral, Sydney Opera House, the Pro Bowl Halftime Show, and the National Championship Football Game Halftime Show.
Mr. Carpenter leaves an enduring legacy that will last long after he has retired. Although the team of music educators he has assembled will miss him, they will strive to continue to elevate the art of choral music for Arizona students in perpetuity. For the past 25 years, choral music has been the vehicle by which he has taught young people to better appreciate all that life has to offer. The students who have been lucky enough to perform under his direction are grateful for the memories which will last a lifetime.
“Having the opportunity to make great music with young people has been the greatest joy of my life. Getting to work with the finest music educators and staff, passionate parents, a committed board of directors, and a completely supportive community has been the icing on the cake for me,” says Mr. Carpenter. “This organization has become my life’s work.”
In addition to his responsibilities with the Phoenix Children’s Chorus, Mr. Carpenter has also taught choral music in the Gilbert and Mesa Public Schools for the past 28 years. He will retire from Mesa Public Schools, where he is Director of Choirs, in May, 2018. Mr. Carpenter loves to travel (especially in the Spanish speaking world) and plans to spend part of the year in South America after retirement.