Celebration & Reflection, Part 2

Celebration & Reflection, Part 2
Monday, May 26, 2014
7:00 PM
Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center
René Clausen, Composer/Conductor Laureate
Music by René Clausen, World Premiere
Bob Chilcott: Requiem
Contact us about this concert and future performance opportunities.

Participating Ensembles:

Choral Society of West Georgia
Beau Chant Community Choir
Chancel Choir, First Baptist Church, Waynesboro, VA
The Master Chorale Of Fargo-Moorhead
Busan Harmony Choir
Coro Polifonico Castelbarco
Chancel Choir, First Presbyterian Church San Pedro
Coro de la Universitat Politècnica de València
Sonoma State University Symphonic Chorus
Vocal Sollýs
Vocal Spotlight

Choral Society of West Georgia

Elizabeth W. Biggs
Elizabeth Biggs
Elizabeth W. Biggs is the founder and artistic director of The Choral Society of West Georgia. She was a music educator with the Troup County School System for 28 years, teaching elementary, middle, and high school choral music. Biggs holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from the Converse College School of Music and Columbus State University in vocal performance and choral music education. She is the discipline expert for the Alabama Institute for Education for the Arts. Biggs has been a member of Cantus Columbus, a professional vocal ensemble, and is active in the Georgia Music Educators Association and the American Choral Directors Association.
Now in its eighth performing season, the Choral Society of West Georgia, based in LaGrange, GA, is comprised of two ensembles, The LaGrange Civic Chorale and Bel Canto LaGrange, A Women's Vocal Ensemble, performing three concerts yearly. The Society offers excellence in choral music through varied and eclectic repertoire and programming. Both groups perform throughout the West Georgia and East Alabama areas. All members of the Choral Society are community volunteer singers, ranging in age from 17 to 75.

Beau Chant Community Choir

Dione Peterson
Dione Peterson
Dione Peterson, conductor of Beau Chant of Faribault, Minnesota, is a native of Minnesota who spent 30 years in South Dakota as a choral director and Fine Arts Coordinator for the Sioux Falls Schools. Her choirs have performed on state and national conventions of ACDA and other music professional organizations. Since returning to Minnesota she has worked with the Northfield Youth Choirs, taught at Shattuck-St. Mary's School as well as St. Olaf College. She continues to serve as a clinician and guest conductor while balancing her activities with performances in the instrumental ensemble, Tres Bien and Beau Chant.
Beau Chant, meaning "Beautiful Singing", is a four part vocal ensemble performing both secular and sacred literature. The group rehearses in Faribault, MN and is under the direction of Dione Peterson. Members love to sing and are from the Faribault, Northfield, Owatonna, and Twin Cities area of Minnesota. Beau Chant's upcoming performances include "Here we come a Caroling" on December 14, 2014, a February Dinner Show, and their Spring Concert, "It's May, the lovely month of May" on May 3. 2015. 

Chancel Choir, First Baptist Church, Waynesboro, VA

The Chancel Choir of the First Baptist Church of Waynesboro has a rich heritage of musical excellence.  In addition to the eclectic style of music they share in worship each week, the choir prepares and performs several major concerts each year centered around Advent/Christmas and Lent/Easter.  The choir performed in New York City under the direction of John Rutter in 2004.  Their ministry also includes overseas Choral Mission Trips to Slovakia/Czech Republic in 1998 and Italy in 2007.  The all volunteer choir is under the direction of Rev. Larry Jones, Minister of Music.  Rev. Jones, a graduate of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary with a Masters in Church Music, brings more than thirty years' experience in conducting.       
Larry Jones has served as Minister of Music and Worship at the First Baptist Church of Waynesboro, VA since 2008.  He has previously served in similar ministry roles in South Carolina, Alabama and Kentucky.  He earned a Bachelor of Music Education from Morehead State University in 1976, and a Master of Church Music from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in 1983. Larry is a member of The American Choral Directors Association, The Hymn Society of the United States and Canada and The Chorister’s Guild. He is also a member of Schola Cantorum of Waynesboro and the Virginia Baptist Male Chorale. 

The Master Chorale Of Fargo-Moorhead

Aaron M. Zinter is Director of Music at Oak Grove Lutheran School in Fargo, ND and is a graduate of Concordia College in Moorhead, MN.  He received his Master of Music degree in Chorale Conducting from Illinois State University.
At Oak Grove, Mr. Zinter conducts the Concert Choir, Chapel Choir, 7th and 8th Grade Choir, 6th Grade General Music, AP Music Theory, Madrigals, Carolers and provides individual voice and guitar lessons.  He directs and manages the annual 10-day Oak Grove Concert Choir Tour across the United States and Canada.  Mr. Zinter also prepares solo and ensemble members for academic competition, for which Oak Grove has earned 27 Outstanding Performances in the past seven years at the North Dakota State Music Contest.
As the former Director of Music Ministries at Second Presbyterian Church in Bloomington, IL, Mr. Zinter conducted twelve K-12 and adult choirs while serving as Department head of seven musicians.  He also directed and managed the Chancel Choir United States Mission Tour across 35 states and Canada, and in March 2005 led a 10-day choral mission trip to Northeastern Brazil with eight outstanding youth singers.
Mr. Zinter has composed and arranged original music for worship and special occasions.  He published choral works with Abingdon Press in Nashville, TN, and received an Outstanding Performance rating at the North Dakota State Music Contest with the Oak Grove Madrigals the past seven years in a row.  Mr. Zinter recorded four CDs with Chanson, a professional male a capella ensemble, and performed with Chanson in a Master Class with The King’s Singers.  He has also been a volunteer facilitator of leadership training activities at Timber Pointe Outdoor Center in Illinois for youth and adults with disabilities.
Aaron Zinter lives in Fargo with his wife, Brittany, and their 2-year old daughter, Lydia.
The Master Chorale of Fargo-Moorhead consists of men and women from the Fargo-Moorhead area of North Dakota and Minnesota, representing a deep commitment to enriching the cultural life of our community.  Chosen by individual audition, members of The Master Chorale are drawn together by their love of great music and the joy of using their talent to uplift and inspire.

The Master Chorale has developed a reputation as one of the premier performing groups in the area.  Founded by artistic director, Lowell H. Larson, who directed The Master Chorale for 25 years, it has been graced with only two other directors of music, René Clausen and Aaron M. Zinter.

Busan Harmony Choir

Kang-Kyu Kim
Kangkyu Kim

Principal conductor Kang-Kyu Kim originally majored in engineering at college, but he changed his major to Vocal Music at Seoul National University. After graduating from Seoul National University, he went on to Wupperthal University of Music (Hochschule fur Musik Koeln-Wupperthal) in Germany to study vocal performance and the Choral Music (Diploma), and continued his studies in choral repertoires under Prof. Johannes Hoemberg who was a professor of the Department of Choral Conducting. After graduating the program, he pursued choral studies in Conservatorium Maastricht and Nederland and received a diploma for choral conducting.

Returning to Korea in 1996, he took up the position as a choral instructor for Yeungnam University and a Associate Conductor of Daegu City Chorus. In 2002, he led the Busan Choir Olympics as an Art Director and held position as a judge at Busan International Chorus Competition. He was the president of Busan Chorus Association and National Metropolitan Chorus Association in consecutive terms. Also, he was an adjunct professor of Ulsan University, and a Principal Conductor of Busan City Chorus in the 12 years between 1999 and 2011.

Currently, he is teaching at Busan Dong-A University, and is an Art Director of Busan Choral Competition and Soongin Culture Foundation.

Busan Harmony Choir, which was founded in 2003, is a mixed chorus consisting of 50 members from various professions.

The Chorus sing choir music of several genres, from traditional classics to popular music, presenting much joy to the audience through fun and moving songs. They held 10 regular concerts, and have been invited to broadcasting stations and international music festivals, and has won awards at Busan International Choral Competition and Gyuje National Choir Competition. They have been singing as a choir since its foundation with Conductor Kang-Kyu Kim who was the Principal Conductor of Busan City Chorus.

Coro Polifonico Castelbarco

Luigi Azzolini
Luigi Azzolini
 
Luigi Azzolini brilliantly graduated in violin and viola at the Conservatory of Padua. Afterwards, he studied the analysis and composition and choir and orchestra conduction, in particular in the choral and vocal-instrumental repertoire, obtaining a degree in Choral Music and Choral Conducting at the Conservatory of Trento. Since 1985 he prepares and conducts the “Castelbarco Polyphonic Choir.” He is the Director of the Trento Theater Choir and founder and director of the vocal ensemble “Continuum.” He recorded for labels such as Naxos, Tactus, Arst, Harmonia Mundi, Velut Luna, Bongiovanni, and the Italian and Austrian National Radio and Television. He is Professor and Vice-Director of the Conservatory of Bolzano.
 
Castelbarco Polyphonic Choir is one of the most important italian semi-professional choral ensembles. Born in 1973, it is directed by L. Azzolini since 1985. It has been involved in numerous theater operas, such as  “La Traviata” of G. Verdi, “Barbiere di Siviglia” of G. Rossini and “Don Giovanni” of Mozart. It was called to perform the Beethoven’s “IX Symphony” Beethoven at the Mozarteum Theater of Salzburg. The Castelbarco Choir performed the Italian Première of J. Rutter’s and B. Chilcott’s “Requiem” with full orchestra, making known to the Italian public these unique pieces of music.
 

Chancel Choir, First Presbyterian Church San Pedro

Allan Robert Petker
Allan Petker
 
The Chancel Choir from the First Presbyterian Church in San Pedro, California is a volunteer ensemble that presents anthems during the regular Sunday morning worship services. They also present at least two major works each year, accompanied by orchestral ensemble. Besides these regular duties, the Chancel Choir often joins with other local churches to present larger choral works and has sung live backup for solo singers at nearby stage shows.  
 
Allan Robert Petker is a composer and arranger with over 250 published works. He is the President of Pavane Publishing and the Vice President of Publications for the Fred Bock Music Companies, distributed worldwide by Hal Leonard Corp.  Allan conducts 2 auditioned chorales: since 1994, Consort Chorale, San Francisco Bay Area; since 2004, Santa Clarita Master Chorale, Los Angeles area. The chorales have twice toured to Eastern Europe and will tour the Baltic this summer.  Allan guest conducts choirs throughout the US, and has been invited to England, France and South Korea.  He is the Minister of Music at the First Presbyterian Church, San Pedro, California.  
 

Coro de la Universitat Politècnica de València

Jose Sanchez Iborra
José Francisco Sánchez Iborra
 
Founded in 2001 by members at UPV: researchers, lecturers, technicians, administrative staff and students. Its main aim was to disseminate the excellence of music and choral pieces in our scientific and technological environment. The present Director is Mr. José Francisco Sánchez-Iborra.
 
The choir has attended a large number of national and international cultural events; has developed exchanges with ensembles from Italy, Austria, Germany and has been active in tours around Spain with other university choirs. Its repertoire includes all periods: Requiem (Mozart, Cherubini, Chilcott), Carmina Burana (Orff), The Songs of the Forests (Shostakovich), Te Deum, The Armed Man (Jenkins), etc.
 
Mr. José Francisco Sánchez Iborra has a Degree in Trumpet, Musical Theory, Music Composition and Choir. He also studied Interpreting Contemporary Music with Spanish Directors and Composers. Currently, he is a Specialized Choir Teacher at the Conservatorio Profesional de Música de Valencia.
 
He has been a Guest Director and Principal Conductor of some orchestras and choirs in Valencia and is now the Director of Coro de la Universitat Politècnica de Valencia, Coral Polifònica d´Alcàsser, Coro de Cámara del Conservatorio Profesional de Música de Valencia and Banda Simfònica de la Societat Joventut Musical.
 

Sonoma State University Symphonic Chorus

Jenny Bent
Jenny Bent
The Sonoma State University Symphonic Chorus, under the direction of Dr. Jenny Bent, performs large works such as Mozart’s Requiem, Orff’s Carmina Burana, and Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms and collaborates with organizations such as the Santa Rosa Symphony.  Community and educational outreach are important aspects of the Chorus mission.  Through such events as the annual Choir Gala, which benefits the Redwood Empire Food Bank, and regular collaboration with Bay Area high schools, the Chorus expands is reach beyond campus walls.  The Symphonic Chorus makes their permanent home in the Joan and Sanford I Weill Hall at Sonoma State University.
Jenny Bent, DMA is the Director of Choral Activities at Sonoma State University and Project Manager of Chanticleer in Sonoma.  She is a graduate of Boston University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and her teachers include Ann Howard Jones and Ruth Ann Swenson.  Dr. Bent’s choirs have received much acclaim, earning unanimous superior ratings and command performances at choral festivals throughout the Bay Area.  Dr. Bent also served on the voice faculty of the Boston University Tanglewood Institute and adjudicates for such organizations as the California Music Educators Association, the American Choral Directors Association, and Golden State.  From 2007-2014, Dr. Bent could be heard hosting the radio show The Choir Loft on KRCB-FM, the Sonoma County NPR affiliate.

Vocal Sollýs

Steven van Kempen
Steven van Kempen
 
A small but a very special choir originally set up in the Netherlands as a children’s choir. It was very successful from the nineteen sixties up to the early nineties.  Its revival ten years ago was amazing. There was that spell again, the magic between singers and audience.  When performing it fills both churches and concert halls  with spiritual energy. The new conductor, Steven van Kempen, has taken the singers to higher heights with a new repertoire, he has polished the sound to brilliance and merged the different voices into one symphony, powerful and subtle at the same time. 
 
Conductor Steven van Kempen has studied several disciplines at the Conservatory of Maastricht, amongst others with Hans Leenders, Ludo Claesen, Jan Stulen. He also followed various master classes. Steven is a concert organist and is conductor of more than 10 ensembles of choir and instrumental music. He is interested in new music, and conducts several pieces by composers such as John Rutter and Bob Chilcott. He has performed in various European countries and is director of several events in the Netherlands such as the Henri Hermans and Kuno Festivals. His own compositions were published by Music Art Limburg Publishing.

Vocal Spotlight

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Donnalynn Laver
A zealous advocate of the performing arts, Donnalynn Holiday Laver serves as Artistic and Musical Director for Vocal Spotlight. Crafting a rich, harmonic sound from the group through her many years of experience in music, she is credited with bringing their vocal music to new distinction. 

Classically trained in voice, piano, organ and woodwinds, Donnalynn began her musical endeavors at a young age, receiving her early training from private tutors in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area. She credits much of her accomplishment to lifetime musical mentor, Samuel Contino, who still resides in the Pittsburgh area.  Her first professional position was as Church Organist for a Pittsburgh area church at age sixteen. As a teenager and young adult, Donnalynn was featured in area churches, high school performances, vocal competitions and recitals, Pittsburgh Symphony Choir, college productions, and local community theatres. During her college years, she continued her training in New York under Julia Smith and Paul Liljestrand and received undergraduate degrees from Nyack College and Southern Adventist University.

Donnalynn performs frequently at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York with Distinguished Concerts International New York (DCINY) and has performed at numerous churches, cathedrals, and concert halls across the United States, the United Kingdom, and Northern Ireland. Her concert travels took her to Germany, Czech Republic, and Austria in June 2013. Career highlights include singing under the direction of Derric Johnson in Walt Disney World Productions, "Voices of Liberty," the world famous eight part harmony a cappella group, performing daily in Epcot Center’s American Adventure. In addition to her work with Vocal Spotlight and other local organizations, Donnalynn is an accomplished studio vocal musician and has served church congregations in numerous capacities including soloist, choir member, orchestra member, Minister of Music, Choir Director and Organist. In community music and theatre, she has filled many roles including Artistic Director, Musical Director, featured soloist, and choral member. She has directed music for Ohio Statehouse celebrations and for multiple television award programs such as The Jefferson Awards. Donnalynn is a soprano in the First Community Church Chancel Choir and is seen on the churches weekly television broadcast First Edition. On retirement from her 25 year career as a Registered Nurse, Donnalynn has returned to The Ohio State University School of Music to pursue an additional music degree in Vocal Music Performance. 

Donnalynn also volunteers at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium in Outreach Programs, Animal Encounters Village, Reptile Keeper Lab, and other animal contact areas. A resident of Columbus for over 20 years, she lives with her husband, Christian, and son, Timothy, in their Upper Arlington home.

In and out of the Director’s role, Donnalynn is a vibrant ambassador for music and an inspiring leader. She draws singers and audiences into music with an approach that is compelling and uniquely her own. Her easy manner in front of audiences and charismatic approach to music, help make her the complete musician.
 Vocal Spotlight, under the direction of Donnalynn Laver, is a dynamic choral ensemble. Their passionate performances are comprised of diverse genres…a cappella to Big Band, classical to Broadway classics and today’s most contemporary hits. Committed to serving their community, Vocal Spotlight has been successful in raising thousands of dollars for charity through their annual Christmas concert series.  Their unique sound is derived from the diverse musical backgrounds of its members, the individual talents possessed by each, and the zest which exceptional music brings to each singers life. Members bring decades of professional experience and lifelong dedication as they entertain audiences young and old.