Calling All Dawns

Calling All Dawns
Monday, Mar 23, 2020
7:00 PM
David Geffen Hall, Lincoln Center
Warren Edward Cook, Guest Conductor
Dan Forrest, DCINY Composer-in-Residence
Forrest: Jubilate Deo
Featuring Distinguished Concerts Orchestra and Distinguished Concerts Singers International
Christopher Tin, Composer/Conductor
Tin: Calling All Dawns
Featuring Distinguished Concerts Orchestra and Distinguished Concerts Singers International
Don Stinson

Ellerby: Paris Sketches

Gershwin: Second Prelude (from Three Preludes)

Boysen: Scarborough Fair

Stegall: Legacy

Belsterling: March of the Steelmen


Joliet Central High School Symphonic Band (IL)

DeAnna Choi, Soprano
Camille Brault, Mezzo-Soprano
Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, Mezzo-Soprano
Michael O., Tenor
Jerome Kavanagh, Maori chanter
Contact us about this concert and future performance opportunities.

Participating Ensembles:

Rivertree Singers and Bob Jones University Choirs, Greenville, S.C.
Emmanuel College Chorale
Tri-State Community Choir
Joie De Vivre Community Choir
Christ Lutheran Church Festival Choir
Catawba Valley Community College
First Baptist Church Dayton, TN
Youth Chorale of Central Minnesota
LOBS Senior High Singers
Singapore Singers
Angels Rule
Singing Earth Divine
CAD2020
Burr & Burton Academy Vocal Music Ensemble
Vocal Latitudes Choir (Alberta, Canada)
Chor Eintracht Illingen
Stuyvesant High School Oratorio Choir
Gemischter Chor Radolfzell e.V. - Harmonie/Frohsinn 1835/1881
Mt. Vernon High School Chamber Chorus
Symphonic Chorale
Aurora Singers (California/United States)
Palo Alto Community Gospel Choir
Circle City Chorale
Living Voices - Mumbai
Mixed Choir Zborallica
Joliet Central High School Symphonic Band

Rivertree Singers and Bob Jones University Choirs, Greenville, S.C.

Warren Cook is the founder and artistic director of Greenville, South Carolina’s award winning Rivertree Singers and Director of Choral Activities at Bob Jones University, where he has taught on the music faculty since 1984 and currently directs the Chamber Singers and the Chorale, the University’s premiere choral groups. His choirs have been auditioned performers at international, national, NAfME and ACDA events. Cook recently received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the S.C. chapter of the American Choral Director’s Association. In addition to teaching and performing, Cook served as a Pastor of Worship for over 30 years.


Rivertree Singers desires to achieve the highest level of choral artistry, to enrich the choral arts community and to support and encourage emerging artists and composers. All members are alumni of collegiate choral organizations from across the Southeast who share a passion for choral singing that delights and inspires arts communities across the globe. Founded in 2010 by artistic director Warren Cook, the ensemble has grown into an internationally recognized community arts organization of disciplined singers, professionals, artists, and teachers. The Bob Jones University Chorale is widely known for its tonal beauty and dramatic expressivity. The 50-voice choir is comprised of undergraduate and graduate students from many of the university’s degree programs and maintains a full performing schedule in concerts, oratorio and opera productions, and campus events.The Chorale recently made its Chicago Orchestra Hall debut, has represented the U.S.at the World Choral Festival in Seoul, Korea, and has been a featured performing choir at ACDA and NAfME events. Now in its 31st year under the direction of Warren Cook, the Chorale continues a long tradition of delighting audiences with excellence in choral art.

Emmanuel College Chorale

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Deborah Herring

Dr. Deborah Herring is Professor of Music and Chair at Emmanuel College where she directs the Chorale, teaches applied voice, and other related courses. She earned her D.A. degree in vocal performance from Ball State University, M.M. from Pittsburg State University, and B.M. from Ozark Christian College. She is the founder and director of Emmanuel Arts Academy has over 30 years of experience as voice teacher, adjudicator, music minister, and owner of her private voice studio business, working with singers of all ages, leading choral workshops and vocal masterclasses. She is a member of NATS, NAfME and Phi Kappa Phi.


The Emmanuel College Chorale under the direction of Dr. Deborah Herring is a select ensemble of 24 voices, comprised of both music majors and non-majors. The chorale performs a wide variety of repertoire from Medieval to Modern periods, both secular and sacred classical music in addition to musical theatre, spiritual, and gospel styles. The choir performs solo concerts in addition to regional festivals, and special events.

Tri-State Community Choir

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Laura Grace Holmes

Award winning soprano, Laura Grace Holmes, considers the South her home. During her collegiate years, Mrs. Holmes studied under prestigious conductor, Dr. James Meaders of Vox Anima London, and under her direction, her choirs have gone on to receive numerous awards and invitations to perform in New York and abroad. Mrs. Holmes is the Artistic Director for the Tri-State Community Choir and currently serves as the Traditional Worship Leader at Covenant United Methodist Church in Dothan, AL. Mrs. Holmes enjoys spending her spare time at home with her children and husband and tackling odd home renovation projects.


The Tri-State Community Choir is a non-auditioned choir that was born of a desire to connect and enrich its community through song. Three friends partnered together in 2018 to bring the vision of excellent choral music to reality. Forty-two voices attended the first rehearsal, and two months later, 80 voices were ready for their premier performance of Dan Forrest's Jubilate Deo. One year later, the TSCC has over 140 registered singers, and is excited for performances ahead. The TSCC holds to a high standard of rehearsal technique and seeks to bring unity, healing, and hope in each rehearsal as well as every performance. All are welcome to sing with the Tri-State Community Choir.

Joie De Vivre Community Choir

Joie De Vivre welcomed Stuart Sladden as conductor in 2018. Previously he was in Edmonton where he has just completed a Doctor of Musical Arts in Choral Conducting at the University of Alberta. Stuart also conducts the Bison Men's Chorus and the Rochester Ringers. He teaches in the Marcel A. Desautels Faculty of Music at the University of Manitoba, and at the International Music Camp, and is vice-president of the Manitoba Choral Association. Stuart is an active clinician and guest conductor, with recent stops in Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and Ontario, and was the sole representative adjudicator from Canada in Hong Kong in May 2019.


Joie De Vivre Community Choir is a mixed ensemble of adult singers. Founded in 2000 by Helga Anderson as a program at the University of Manitoba Marcel A. Desautels Faculty of Music, it became a community organization under the direction of John Tanner in 2014, who stayed on as president when Stuart Sladden became conductor in 2018. Elizabeth Sadler joined in 2019 as assistant conductor. Joie De Vivre performs two concerts per year, and also leads some sacred services in St. John's Chapel on the University of Manitoba campus. They are honored to participate in DCINY's presentation of Dan Forrest's Jubilate Deo!

Christ Lutheran Church Festival Choir

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Limuel Forgey III

Mister of Music at Christ Lutheran, Visalia, Mr. Forgey has proudly been a servant to the people of his church for over 15 Years. Working with and mentored by the brilliant Pastor Brian Malison has been one of the greatest privileges and joys of Mr. Forgey's career. As an accomplished and distinguished international performer, baritone LIMUEL FORGEY has been received with critical acclaim in the genres of opera, oratorio, and musical theatre. His stage work includes extensive opera and musical theatre roles: The Count and the title role in Le nozze di Figaro with VOCE and Fresno Sequoia Opera; Sharpless in Madama Butterfly with California Opera, Golden Gate Opera, and Fresno Opera; Escamillo in Carmen with Fresno Sequoia Opera, Visalia Opera Company, California Opera Association, and Golden Gate Opera; Germont in La Traviata with California Opera and Golden Gate Opera; Enrico in Lucia di Lammermoor with California Opera Association; Aeneas in Dido and Aeneas with Fresno City Opera, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus with Fresno Sequoia Opera; Peter in Hansel und Gretel with Visalia Opera Company and Pullman Opera; Javert and Bishop in Les Miserables with Theater Arts Alliance and Fresno Grand Opera; Piangi in The Phantom of the Opera with COS Sequoia Theatre; Johnson in Cepelak's Lincoln and Booth-A New Opera with Golden Gate Opera, Petrovitch in Crime and Punishment-The Opera with RB Productions Visalia; Chillingworth in The Scarlet Letter with RB Productions Visalia; Emile in South Pacific with Theater Arts Alliance and with Selma Arts Center; and Ko Ko in The Mikado with Pullman Opera. Mr. Forgey is managed by Vocal Artist Management.


Christ Lutheran Festival Choir is an advanced group of diverse singers performing some of the greatest classical works of all time. From Bach Passions to the great works of Dan Forrest, the group takes pride in presenting large scale quality music with orchestra.

Catawba Valley Community College

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Caroline Simyon

Caroline Simyon holds a Masters of Music Degree from Appalachian State University where she graduated Magna Cum Laude. As a coloratura soprano, Mrs. Simyon won first place in the National Association of Teachers of Singing NC. She is an accomplished Soprano Soloist who performs frequently. She has performed the National Anthem for the Atlanta Braves and the Charlotte 49ers. She has sung with the Oratorio Singers and Renaissance Singers of Charlotte. Most recently Caroline was a guest performer for the Western Piedmont Symphony. Mrs. Simyon is the Director of the Music Department at Catawba Valley Community College.


The Catawba Valley Community College Choral Ensemble is an audition only, select group of talented singers. Under the direction of Caroline Simyon, the singers perform fine choral literature from all periods. The goal of our Ensemble is to cultivate quality choral music, provide a medium of musical expression, and to afford numerous performance opportunities within our community.

First Baptist Church Dayton, TN

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Randy Bright

Randy Bright has been the music director at First Baptist Church Dayton, TN for 6 years. He holds a Masters of Music in Choral Conducting from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and teaches choral music at Rhea County High School and Rhea Middle School.


First Baptist Church in Dayton, TN has an Adult Choir that leads worship every Sunday morning. This group totals around 25 members and sings Christmas and Easter cantatas every year. The Adult Choir has also for the past 5 years participated in a Community Christmas Program with other area churches in a choir totaling around 80 members.

Youth Chorale of Central Minnesota

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Garrett Lathe

Mr. Lathe earned his Bachelor Degree in Music Education from Bemidji State University under the mentorship of Dr. Paul Brandvik. He has completed coursework for a Masters in Music in Choral Conducting at St. Cloud State University. Mr. Lathe has been a music educator for over 20 years, including twelve years at Sartell High School, where the enrollment in choirs nearly doubled under his leadership. After working full time in the business sector from 2013-2017 while maintaining his tenure with YCCM, Mr. Lathe re-entered the classroom as the Choir Director at Sauk Rapids-Rice Middle School. There he conducts a program of 250 singers in three choirs. He is a frequent adjudicator and clinician around Minnesota and is an active member of the American Choral Directors Association of Minnesota, serving on their Editorial Board.


YCCM is an auditioned ensemble, consisting of 124 singers representing 23 different high schools and 25 Central Minnesota communities. The Mission of the Youth Chorale of Central Minnesota is to prepare select high school singers for performances of the highest caliber for the widest possible audience. It supports its mission by presenting concerts, recordings, commissioning and performing new choral works, and by working collaboratively with the community at large to promote singing, specifically with school music programs and other music organizations.

LOBS Senior High Singers

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Jim Watson

Jim Watson is Director of Music Ministries at First Baptist Church, Lake Orion. He conducts the graded choirs and orchestral forces of the church and educational ministries, the Lake Orion Baptist School. Jim is an adjudicator, clinician, and scholar who regularly serves young musicians through the Michigan School Vocal Music Association. His research interests include choral literature selection, voice pedagogy, and conductors’ analyses. His research appears in the Choral Journal, and he presented workshops at the Michigan Music Conference, Midwest Christian Educators Convention, South Carolina Independent School Association, and assisted with the American Choral Directors Association Southern Division and National Conferences. Jim conducted honors choirs in Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Ohio. He regularly serves young singers and conductors. He seeks to cultivate intellectual curiosity while providing ensemble experiences that are consistently recognized for excellence.


The Senior High Singers is the high school performing ensemble of the Lake Orion Baptist School. The SHS performs choral masterworks and features new works by living composers. Students gain skill in performing vocal music for the purpose of church music ministry.

Singapore Singers

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Nanette L. Devens

Nanette Devens has directed the Singapore American High School Choirs for 18 years. In that time she has had the privilege of conducting major choral/orchestral works such as Orff's "Carmina Burana", Mozart's 'Requiem", Jenkin's "The Armed Man", Rutter's "Gloria" and most recently Dan Forrest's "Jubilate Deo". She has also conducted choirs in the US, China, Saudi Arabia and Malaysia. Ms. Devens has worked most of her career in international school settings. In her time overseas she has enjoyed working with motivated student musicians and colleagues. Time and time again she is amazed by how singing together builds community and strengthens relationships in even the most diverse settings.


The Singapore American School Choirs is an amalgamation of three high school choirs and one community choir. Located in beautiful Southeast Asia, SAS boasts a wonderfully diverse and culturally rich student body. All SAS singers in tonight's program performed "Jubilate Deo" with full orchestra last May. The SAS Choirs are excited to perform "Jubilate Deo" again in the beautiful Lincoln Center. They experienced many wonderful musically enlightening and community enriching moments in their preparation and performance last spring. They anticipate the same "jubilation" that comes with singing great music together with new friends again tonight.

Angels Rule

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Angels Rule consists of 4 (semi) professional singers, accompanied by a keyboard player. For more than 10 years this vocal group has been providing top-notch musical entertainment! From light pop music, to gospel and musical. No challenge is too big!

Singing Earth Divine

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Jua Amir and Crystal Petit

Jua Amir, Choir Director for Singing Earth Divine, is an American artist who came to France with “The Lion King,” and later “Hair” and “Freedom Opera Gospel.” A vocal coach for some of Europe’s biggest singers and productions, including Michel Sardou, M Pokora, Shy’m, and the musical, “Adam et Eve” (Pascal Obispo), Jua believes that ART is the facilitation of sacred energy. Crystal Petit, Artistic Director for Singing Earth Divine, is originally from Atlanta, but based in Paris since 2000, and is a singer, songwriter, coach and voice-over actor who has worked with renowned artists in Europe and Asia.


Singing Earth Divine officially began five years ago. Jua Amir and Crystal Petit, two American artists based in Paris for many years, held the first rehearsal in the basement of the American Cathedral in Paris. As singers, vocal coaches, and Americans with Gospel roots, they had always been aware of the power of song. Singing has the unique ability to allow Human Beings to feel their own authentic expression contribute to and be supported by a collective expression. The choir now counts almost 100 singers from various confessions and cultures: artists, mathematicians, students, judges, farmers, sailors and everything in between!

CAD2020

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Magalie Tauzin

Magalie Tauzin (43) is a music teacher and coordinator at the Bizanos music school. As a passionate person, she is enthusiastic about sharing her imaginary musical world with her students, her singers and her audience. After studies at the regional conservatory of BAYONNE, she participated in numerous traineeships, including the 4th international academy for young choirmaster in Luxembourg. Recognized for the originality of her performances, she won 1st prize at the “Festichoeurs d'Aquitaine” festival and was recently named Béarn ambassador for the "Calling all dawns" project in New York.


The recently created CAD220 choir is the result of the grouping of several members coming from four Pau choirs who already had in 2017 the opportunity to play Calling all dawns (Christopher TIN) in various locations of Pau vicinity.

Burr & Burton Academy Vocal Music Ensemble

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Julie Freebern

Julie Freebern received her Bachelor’s degree in Music Eduction from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Summa Cum Laude with a Chancellor’s Talent Scholarship for clarinet performance. Julie has been teaching for twenty-seven years. In 2007, she received the Distinguished Music Educator Award from the Yale School of Music and was the recipient of Burr & Burton Academy’s Bigelow Fund for Excellence Faculty Grant. She was honored by Burr & Burton Academy with the 2017 Rowland Faculty Chair Award. She plays clarinet with the Sage City Symphony Orchestra and performs Early Music with the Equinox Consort on various Renaissance and Baroque Recorders.


The Burr & Burton Academy Vocal Music Ensemble first performed Calling All Dawns with the support of composer Christopher Tin for their 2012 Prisms Concert. They then performed the New York City Premier at Lincoln Center in 2013 followed by a World Premiere of The Drop that Contained the Sea at Carnegie Hall in 2014, both presented by Distinguished Concerts International New York(DCINY). The ensemble returned for a repeat performance of Calling All Dawns in 2016 at Lincoln Center and is excited to relive this experience in 2020 under the direction of the composer, presented by Distinguished Concerts International New York(DCINY).

Vocal Latitudes Choir (Alberta, Canada)

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Frank Rackow

Frank Rackow is an active music educator, director and performer. A saxophonist and clarinetist, he has recorded and toured with jazz and world music groups at festivals, clubs and theatres across Canada. A longtime chorister, he is the founding director of Vocal Latitudes Choir (2005) and also directs the Calgary Jewish Community Centre klezmer band, as well as leading his own group, The Black Sea. Frank studied music at Concordia and McGill universities in Montreal, Canada.


Vocal Latitudes was founded in 2005 and provides a welcoming and accessible choral community for singers interested in learning a wide variety of repertoire: from madrigals to Motown, from gospel and jazz, to Indigenous songs and more. A non-auditioned, mixed-voice community choir, the group has performed widely around Calgary, Canada and has sung (at last count) in 18 different languages (including gibberish for an arrangement of music from Cirque du Soleil).

Chor Eintracht Illingen

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Jürgen Huttenlocher

Jürgen Huttenlocher is a self employed piano teacher and for more than 40 years the organist in a local protestant church. He is also the director of five choirs. One of them is "Chor Eintracht Illingen". Since 2012 he is a member of the "Music Advisory Board" in the Swabian Choir Association.


The history of the choir Eintracht started 1852 as a male voice choir and 100 years later it became a mixed voice choir. In 1994 the new conductor Juergen Huttenlocher formed a further formation that was given the name illCanto (ill = Illingen). The number of all active members from both choirs is 60. illCanto celebrated their 25th anniversary in 2019 by presenting the great concert "Calling All Dawns"

Stuyvesant High School Oratorio Choir

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Liliya Shamazov

Liliya Shamazov is a conductor, pianist, and a music educator. She holds degrees in piano performance, music history, and school administration. She is the recipient of multiple awards, including Conservatory of Music Scholarship (Brooklyn College, CUNY), Harvey Lichtenstein Prize in Performing Arts, Laurence Dilsner Memorial Award for Choir Directors and Music Educators, Choral Award (Brooklyn College), and John Challener Award in Piano. Ms. Shamazov has worked with choruses for over 20 years, singing, accompanying, and conducting. As a choral accompanist, she has worked at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, Middle School Audition Boot Camp at Lincoln Center, New York University Chorale, and the NYC Honors Festival. She sings and conducts at the St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Cathedral in Manhattan, and has worked with the Stuyvesant High School Choruses since 2005. Ms. Shamazov currently serves as a Music Teacher Mentor for the NYC Department of Education and is a Music Teacher Professional Development Facilitator for the DOE's Office of Arts and Special Projects.


Stuyvesant High School’s Choruses number over 300 singers drawn from the international community of Stuyvesant High School, encompassing grades 9 through 12. Students accepted into the Oratorio Choir, Men's Chorus, Women's Chorus, and the Madrigal Choir commit themselves through senior year. Repertoire is varied, representative of masterworks and pieces from the popular canon. The choruses have performed at the NYC Honors Choral Festival, at Choral Fest at Symphony Space, at the River-to-River Festival with Master Voices Chorale, at the National Chorale's NYC High School Choral Festival, at Citi Headquarters Plaza and Lobby Opening Ceremony, with the Cornell University Men's Glee Club, and at the 9/11 Glade Dedication Ceremony last year. At NYSSMA festivals, the choruses have received Gold Awards, as well as Gold with Distinction Award at 2017 festival. The choruses have sung with DCINY since 2013, performing Handel’s "Messiah", Verdi’s "Messa da Requiem", Mozart’s "Requiem in D Minor", Orff's "Carmina Burana", a solo segment in “Songs of Inspiration and Hope,” and in "Reflections of Light" concert.

Gemischter Chor Radolfzell e.V. - Harmonie/Frohsinn 1835/1881

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Jochen Stuppi

Jochen Stuppi (* 1983) was born in Germany and studied music education with additional training forapplied theater and theater pedagogue. He staged his own compositions, inspired by picture books such as "Queen of Colors" or school texts "What a FEEling!" With children and adolescents. At the State owned Seminar for Didactics and Teacher Training in Meckenbeuren, he developed musical concepts for stage entertainments such as “Mensch! Fist!". Under his artistic direction of the Mixed Choir Radolfzell, "Radolfzell by Night" was created in 2015 with excerpts from "Calling all Dawns", "Vocal Delights" (dinner and choral singing) and "Paradoxes". With the performance of the stage work “Snoopy !!! The Musical”, he fulfilled a long-awaited childhood dream in 2019 and was the first, who adapted this work for choir.


Modern choir with tradition Mixed Choir Radolfzell is the oldest association in the city of Radolfzell. It was founded in 1835 as a male choir, since 1954 women and men have been singing together. Currently 60 singers between the ages of 28 and 72 rehearse weekly, go on concert tours and excursions. The choir is not restricted to any style of music. So we performed sacred music with B.Chilcott's Christmas Cantata together with Jack Willbergs Requiem. Last year, we premiered “Snoopy !!! The Musical” a German choir adaptation and were nominated therefore by a cultural promoting institution of the region for a prize. Choir director J. Stuppi has designed for 2020 a choir festival for the 185th anniversary-celebration of the choir with artists and workshops all around singing.

Mt. Vernon High School Chamber Chorus

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Ryan Knight

Ryan Knight is the Director of Vocal Music and Technical Theatre at the Mount Vernon Senior High School Fine Arts Academy where he directs multiple choral ensembles and teaches courses in applied vocal music, musical theatre, and technical theatre. As a Level 2 Google Certified Educator, he also serves as a Curriculum Technology Leader, providing technical support and professional development for staff at Mount Vernon High School. Mr. Knight serves as the Assistant Conductor of the Evansville Philharmonic Chorus which produces several major choral works each year, most recently Puccini’s “Turandot” in April 2020. Knight serves on the state board of the Indiana Choral Directors Association and is an area event coordinator for the Indiana Music Education Association. Knight earned his Bachelor of Music in Education and Master of Music Education degrees from Murray State University in Murray, KY.


The Mt. Vernon High School Fine Arts Academy in Mt. Vernon, Indiana is comprised of award-winning students in vocal and instrumental music, theatre arts, technical theatre, and visual design. The MVHS Chamber Chorus features twenty elite students and is represented by a select group of students who are proud to return to New York City to work with DCINY and Christopher Tin.

Symphonic Chorale

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Sara Nichole Slone Smith

Sara Smith is in her sixth year as Choral Director at Giles High School in Pearisburg, VA. In addition to directing three choirs: Symphonic Chorale, SSA Chorus, and Chamber Ensemble, Sara also teaches class guitar, class piano, and music appreciation. Her philosophy is to provide a foundational understanding and appreciation for music of all types and to encourage life-long musicianship. Sara holds her Master’s Degree in Music Education from Kent State University (2015), and her Bachelors Degree in Music Education from Radford University (2013). Sara holds affiliations with NAfME, VCDA, VEA, and Mu Phi Epsilon.


Symphonic Chorale is the mixed chorus at Giles High School. Under the direction of Mrs. Sara Smith, the Chorale has consistently earned Superior ratings at VCDA District Assessments and won top honors at various choral competitions. The Symphonic Chorale performs repertoire in various genres and styles from the Middle Ages to the 21st Century.

Aurora Singers (California/United States)

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Dawn Reyen

Dawn Reyen, Director, received her undergraduate degree in piano performance from the College of Notre Dame in Belmont and her masters degree in Choral Conducting from Loyola University in New Orleans. She has accompanied professionally since the age of 12, and enjoys working in many different musical styles and genres. In addition to directing the Aurora Singers, Dawn is also the assistant conductor and accompanist for Schola Cantorum; music director at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Redwood City; music teacher for pre-K through 8th grade at St. Raymond School; Music and Movement teacher for Ragazzi Boys Chorus; and freelance accompanist/coach.


The Aurora Singers is a non-profit community chorus of about sixty mixed voices. We are based in Palo Alto, but our choir members come from around the Bay Area and beyond. We prepare two concert programs each year. Our December program draws from winter and holiday music of all cultures, and our Spring concert is always devoted exclusively to American music of all genres - folk, spirituals, pop, classic, standards, show tunes - anything made in America! Our mission is to bring quality, uplifting entertainment to people who otherwise would not be able to enjoy live music. In fulfillment of this mission, Aurora brings each concert to different venues such as convalescent homes, veterans' hospitals, senior centers, and retirement facilities. We also present each program to the public as a benefit for the Unitarian Universalist Church of Palo Alto, which generously provides our rehearsal space. The Aurora Singers have been celebrating together in song since 1989. Our extraor­dinary Musical Director is Dawn Reyen. We are also proud to have a sister choir, Assou Lezert Chorale of Albi, France, with whom we have had joint concerts on both sides of the Atlantic.

Palo Alto Community Gospel Choir

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Calvin G. Ross

Calvin Ross has been a professional gospel musician since the age of 11. Throughout the years, he has trained and accompanied many church choirs and gospel groups. His current positions include Musical Director for the Palo Alto Community Gospel Choir as well as the senior musician/director for Paradise Baptist Church in San Francisco, California. Both choirs have been outstanding under his direction. In addition to music, Calvin spent 35 years in the high tech computer industry, from which he retired in 2006. Following retirement, he spent 7 years teaching middle school, but gospel music is his real love.


In memory of the Rev. Dr. Isaiah Jones, Jr., former Director of Palo Alto Community Gospel Choir, we have re-formed under the God given leadership of Calvin Ross, a prolific choir director in the Bay Area. We actively and joyfully affirm diversity in praising God through welcoming and recruiting members of different faiths and ethnic groups. We don’t charge admission, so anyone is able to attend. In addition, each year we sponsor a benefit concert to help organizations who do reputable charity work.

Circle City Chorale

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Angela Jett Rosser

Angela Rosser founded the Circle City Chorale in January 2010, currently serving as Conductor / Artistic Director. The organization currently includes five community choirs! She has worked as a conductor, instructor, accompanist, vocal coach and performer. Angela earned her BA Degree (Music) from Spelman College in Atlanta, and served as the Student Director for the renowned Spelman College Glee Club. Other directing credits include The Bell-tones (Pacific Bell), Director of Music - Corona United Methodist Church, and owner of Melody Manor Music. Angela loves her groups and promoting the arts throughout her hometown of Corona CA and beyond! Hello NYC!


The Circle City Chorale was founded in January 2010 with 29 members. In 2012, we became a nonprofit 501© (3) corporation. With a current membership of 60 singers, our mission is to provide the local community with a dynamic, high-caliber choir, promoting music appreciation and arts education. We are committed to diversity in our membership, repertoire and patrons by singing choral music from varied cultures and genres, providing a more enriching, uplifting and educational experience. We seek community outreach opportunities with those that share our belief that music has the power to entertain, educate, and inspire.

Living Voices - Mumbai

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Blossom Mendonca

Born into a well-known musical family, Blossom Mendonca began her musical studies in Mumbai. She furthered her musical education at the Conservatorio Superior de Musica de Valencia in Spain, receiving the ‘Titulo de Profesor’ with Distinction. She is a Licentiate in piano (Trinity College, London) and has a Master’s degree in Psychology. Blossom Mendonca is a much sought after piano teacher (her students have won national and International laurels at examinations and competitions) and choir director. She teaches and conducts in order to spread the joy that music has given her. Her experience in choral direction began at the age of 17 and she has been the founder and director of Living Voices, Mumbai for the past 38 years. Under her direction, the choir has performed various genres of music from a capella to choral works with orchestra. She also prepares her choir to sing for operas, premieres, etc. with world renowned composers and conductors such as Karl Jenkins, Martyn Brabbins, David Murphy among others.


Living Voices was founded in 1982 by Blossom Mendonca. The choir is comfortable singing all genres of music be it Gregorian, Spirituals, Folk Songs, classical Modern, Contemporary, Popular, Jazz or World Music. They have collaborated with the Bombay Chamber Orchestra for Messa Di Gloria by Puccini and the Polovotsienne dances by Borodin among others and the Symphony Orchestra of India for many recent performances. They performed the twin operas of “Cavalleria Rusticana” and “Il Pagliacci”, Carmina Burana, and Beethoven’s 9th. They also performed ‘Adiemus’, Songs of the Sanctuary, and The Armed Man - Mass for Peace along with premiering ‘The Universe’ conducted by the Karl Jenkins. They are currently working on a Zarzuela by Jose Serrano to be performed early March 2020. They have received accolades from foreign conductors under whose baton they have performed, to packed audiences. Their motto is to live, to love, to sing. A passion for excellence in a relaxed atmosphere is the hallmark of their rehearsals.

Mixed Choir Zborallica

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Janja Omejec Strnad

Janja Omejec Strnad was born in 1990 in Ljubljana, Slovenia. After she gained basic education in piano and flute, she began partaking in singing lessons with professor Polona Kopač Trontelj. She finished her choral conducting program under supervision of both Dr. Borut Smrekar (2012) and professor Urška Štampe (2014). She successfully finished her studies at the Medical Faculty in Ljubljana in 2015 and is now working as a general practicioner.


Zborallica is a nonprofessional mixed choir which was founded in 2009. The choir hails from Stična, Municipality of Ivančna Gorica, Slovenia. The repertoire of the choir consists of both a cappella and accompanied choral music from a variety of time periods and genres - mostly choral arrangements of worldwide known pop songs, but also traditional folk songs from different countries and novelty songs of modern conductors. They regularly perform on different stages in their home country and annually present themselves with their own concert. Their biggest achievements are second prize at Ohrid Choir festival in 2015 and absolute first prize in category of mixed choirs at Festival Majske muzičke svečanosti in Bjeljina, 2019.

Joliet Central High School Symphonic Band

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Don Stinson

Don Stinson is the Director of Bands at Joliet Central High School, only the fifth director in the band’s 108-year history. He directs the symphonic band, concert band, big band, jazz combo, pep band, and marching band, in addition to teaching Advanced Placement Music Theory. Mr. Stinson is a 2002 alumnus of Joliet Central, and he holds degrees in music education from Joliet Junior College, VanderCook College of Music, Northern Illinois University, and holds an additional Masters in Education Administration from the University of St. Francis. Under his direction, the concert programs at Joliet have performed at numerous performances and festivals. Performance highlights include invitations to the prestigious Illinois SuperState Festival at the University of Illinois (2017, 2018, 2019), a superior rating and caption awards at the Smoky Mountain Music Festival, and superior ratings and Best of Day award at the Ilinois High School Association contest. Mr. Stinson holds five Citations of Excellence from the National Band Association, is a 2017 CMA Music Teacher of Excellence, a four time-named Grammy Music Educator Quarterfinalist, and is a National Board Certified teacher. In 2018, Mr. Stinson received the Chicagoland Outstanding Music Educator Award. He is a member of the Phi Beta Mu International Bandmaster’s Fraternity, the National Band Association, the Illinois Music Educators Association, and is the host of the music education podcast “The Bandmasters.”


The Joliet Central High School Band (formerly Joliet Township) was established in 1912. In 108 years, the Joliet Central Band has served thousands of students and has held only five directors in the history of the program: A.R. McAllister, 1912-1944; Bruce Houseknecht, 1945-1969; Ted Lega, 1969-2002; Mike Fiske, 2002-2016; and Don Stinson, 2016-present. Joliet’s nickname is “The City of Champions,” derived from the numerous awards and accolades earned by the band, including National Championships judged by John Philip Sousa, presidential performances, an engagement with the Rockettes in New York, and numerous appearances at the prestigious University of Illinois Superstate Festival. In 2018, the band's story was featured in a six-issue spread of School Band and Orchestra Magazine. Joliet Central High School serves a diverse population in regards to culture, race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status. Over 70% of Joliet Central Band students require the use of a school-owned instrument to participate in the band program, and the school and community work hard to ensure that students have access to music education. The Joliet Central Symphonic Band is the advanced ensemble at Joliet, consisting of freshmen through senior students. Students earn a role in the band through audition or director recommendation.