Of Life and Liberty

Of Life and Liberty
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Sunday, Jan 19, 2014
2:00 PM
Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage, Carnegie Hall
James Meaders, Guest Conductor
Dan Forrest, DCINY Composer-in-Residence
Dan Forrest: Requiem for the Living, New York Premiere
Matthew Oltman, DCINY Debut Conductor
Music for Men's Voices
Featuring Distinguished Concerts Orchestra
and Distinguished Concerts Singers International
Viola Dacus, Mezzo-Soprano
Contact us about this concert and future performance opportunities.

Participating Ensembles:

Clinton High School Arrow Singers
Germantown High School Maverick Singers
Hickory Choral Society
Northwest Mississippi Community College Northwest Singers
Newton County High School Choir
Meridian H.S. Concert Choir
Mississippi College Singers
Apollo Male Chorus
Augustana College Wennerberg Men's Chorus
Borah High School’s Tactus Varsity Men’s Ensemble
Brownsburg High School's The Blend
Calgary Men's Chorus
Florence Men's Choral Society
The Fort Lauderdale Gay Men's Chorus
Natick High School Men’s Chorus

Clinton High School Arrow Singers

Brittnye Aven
Brittnye Aven
Arrow Singers is an all auditioned performing group that makes up five different choral ensembles at Clinton High School. Colla Voce, Vivace, Varisity Men, and Bella Vida. All choirs consistently receive superior ratings at District and State Choral Festivals. Last year, Colla Voce and Vivace received the Sweepstakes Choral Award at the Mississippi State Choral Festival, getting all superiors from each judge as well as a superior rating in Sight Reading. This is Arrow Singers second time to perform in Carnegie Hall. 

Germantown High School Maverick Singers

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Carrie S. Owens
Maverick Singers—made up of 9th-12th grade students from Germantown High School in Madison Mississippi—are proudly making their Carnegie Hall debut this season. Since their inaugural year in 2011, Maverick Singers have doubled in size and consistently received Superiors at festivals in Mississippi and received two Sweepstakes Awards at State Choral Festival the spring of 2013. Maverick Singers performs for local venues and had the pleasure of singing in Forgotten Carols in 2011. The poet Elizabeth Bishop writes “There is a magic made by melody.” Maverick Singers hope to continue creating and spreading their powerful magic for decades to come.

Hickory Choral Society

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J. Don Coleman
Hickory Choral Society began in 1977 with an annual presentation of Handel’s Messiah by local singers, directed by Don Coleman.  This grew into expanding the music offerings and performing the Brahm’s Requiem in 1978 becoming the Hickory Choral Society.
 
The Choral Society, a group of volunteer singers, draws singers from a seven-county area.  The concert season includes three concerts (Fall, Christmas, Spring). HCS has had many opportunities to perform in venues outside our area including performing Verdi’s Requiem in Avery Fisher Hall; Beethoven’s Ninth with the North Carolina Symphony ; a prelude concert in Washington National Cathedral; and a performance at Piccolo Spoleto. They have performed with renowned British musicians, Jonathan Willcocks and Sir David Willcocks both in the US and Great Britain and other composers and conductors. 
 
Expanding its repertoire of venues, the Hickory Choral Society ventured into the world of television with its 2003 Christmas Concert, broadcast live to viewers statewide as part of UNC-TV’s end-of-year fund drive. With that success UNC-TV requested a new performance for its 2004 fund drive.
 
The Hickory Choral Society commissioned the work being performed, Requiem for the Living, in honor of our 35th Anniversary in 2013.

Northwest Mississippi Community College Northwest Singers

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Susanne Spencer VanDyke
Susanne Spencer VanDyke is in her 21st year as Director of Choral Activities at Northwest Mississippi Community College and also serves as the chair of the Music Department. She is a graduate of South Panola High School. In addition to her college studies at Northwest, she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Music from Delta State University and a Master of Music in Vocal Performance from Mississippi College. She has also taken post graduate courses in choral conducting with Dr. James Jordan at Westminster Choir College. She is featured in “Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers” and is a contributor to the book “The Musician’s Spirit” by Dr. James Jordan. She is past president of the State Community College Choral Association as well a member of American Choral Directors Association and National Association of Teachers of Singing. In 2013, VanDyke was awarded the prestigious Sandy Grisham Excellence in Teaching Award for her innovation, excellence and commitment in teaching music and in directing choral activities at Northwest Mississippi Community College.
She serves as Vocal Director for Northwest musicals and in this position has directed “Cats,” “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” “Smoke on the Mountain,” “Sanders Family Christmas,” “Little Shop of Horrors,” ”Fiddler on the Roof,” “Man of La Mancha,” “Les Miserables,” and many others. 

Newton County High School Choir

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Suzanne Cain

Meridian H.S. Concert Choir

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Penny McLemore
Under the direction of Penny McLemore and Jennifer Davis, the Concert Choir has for the last 11 years been ranked Superior at District Festivals, and has also received Superior ratings at State Festival the past 4 years. 
The Choir was awarded Sweepstakes winner at last year’s state festival for scoring all superiors in both concert and sight-reading. 
In 2007, they won the Atlanta Music Festival, awarded best overall choir, and received the same honor in 2008, at the Dollywood Music Festival.
This year, in addition to the honor of singing at Carnegie Hall, the Choir opened for the University of Southern Miss Chamber Singers on November 14, 2013.
 

Mississippi College Singers

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James Meaders
James M. Meaders is Professor and Director of Choral Activities at Mississippi College.  A member of the MC faculty since 1998, Dr. Meaders conducts the Mississippi College Singers, teaches applied voice, and heads the graduate program in conducting. The Singers, under Meaders’ direction, have performed on Mississippi (2002, 2007, 2010, 2012), Southern Division (2004, 2008), and National (2005) ACDA convention programs. He has conducted the Singers in Canterbury Cathedral, Washington National Cathedral, four international tours including Germany, Italy, Austria, England, and South Africa, three recent performances in Carnegie Hall, and a January 2012 performance in Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center.
 
In 2004-2005, Meaders was selected by the Mississippi College faculty as Distinguished Lecturer in Arts and Sciences and was Humanities Professor of the Year.
Meaders has served on the Board of MS ACDA as President and R&S Chair for Youth and Student Activities, and he has served Southern Division ACDA as R&S Chair for Youth and Student Activities and, currently, R&S Chair for Colleges and Universities.
He was a member of the Format and Organization committee of the recently published hymnal, Celebrating Grace. Dr. Meaders is the co-founder of the International Center for Collaboration in the Musical Arts, a conducting education project based in Johannesburg, South Africa.
 
Dr. Meaders is a frequent festival adjudicator, presenter, and clinician. In addition to his work at Mississippi College, he was Artistic Director of the Jackson Choral Society from 2002-2008, and he has been minister of music at Northside Baptist Church in Clinton since 2001.  He has conducted the Mississippi Baptist All-State Youth Choir since 2003. Professional memberships include American Choral Directors Association and the National Association of Teachers of Singing. After completing undergraduate and graduate degrees from Mississippi College, he received the Doctor of Musical Arts in conducting from The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, where he studied with Milburn Price and John Dickson.

Apollo Male Chorus

Sean Vogt
Sean Vogt
 
For 118 years, the Apollo Male Chorus has delighted audiences around the Twin Cities, the nation, and the world. The first American chorus to place in the top three at the International Eisteddfod Festival in Wales, Apollo has made appearances on film, at a world's fair, and a presidential inauguration. Apollo's rich history is supported by one of the largest male choral libraries in the world. Its members comprise a rich background of experiences including professional musicians from classical music to Rock and Roll to Hip Hop as well as those with extensive experience in diverse community musical groups. Visit: www.apollomalechorus.com
Dr. Sean Vogt is the artistic director and conductor of the Apollo Male Chorus and choirmaster at the Cathedral of Saint Paul. He also serves as Minnesota's Repertoire & Standards Chair: Music and Worship for the American Choral Directors Association. He holds the MM and DMA degrees in choral conducting from Southern Methodist University and Michigan State University, respectively. As an organist, he has concertized nationally and internationally. An enthusiastic proponent of choral conducting pedagogy, Dr. Vogt has led conducting master classes at several institutions–most recently at Yale University–and is a frequent conductor at choral festivals. For more information visit: www.seanFvogt.com

Augustana College Wennerberg Men's Chorus

Wennergberg Men's Chorus from Augustana College, IL, is an ensemble for men who sing for enjoyment and an enhanced appreciation of choral music. Today's Wennerberg is a revival of a past Augustana choral group, which joined with the Jenny Lind Women's Choir to found the Augustana Choir, which made its debut performance at Orchestra Hall in Chicago in 1931. The current incarnation of Wennerberg has enjoyed building a strong reputation by providing quality, high-energy performances of music from an eclectic array of genres.
 
Howard Eckdahl is Artist-in-Residence at Augustana College in Rock Island, IL, where he teaches chorus, theory and voice. In addition to his teaching duties, he regularly arranges for Men's Chorus, is an organist and performs as a baritone soloist. Last spring, under the baton of Dr. Jon Hurty, he was thrilled to make his debut as Pontius Pilate in Bach's St. John Passion, appearing with noted Evangelist Dr. Timothy Stalter. A native of Downers Grove, IL, Eckdahl earned his B.A. from Augustana College cum laude, and his M.M. in voice and Performer's Certificate in conducting from Northern Illinois University.

Borah High School’s Tactus Varsity Men’s Ensemble

Heather Prinzing
Heather Prinzing
Tactus is the Varsity Men's Choir at Borah High School in Boise, ID. They were formed in 1994 as an afterschool group by some students who wanted to sing some men's a capella music. The group grew in popularity and after three years it became an elective choice and a class during the regular school day. Tactus has performed for numerous State and Regional Conventions and Conferences for both the American Choral Director's Association and the National Association of Music Education. They consistently receive superior ratings at local festivals and do more than 30 concerts and performances a year. Tactus sings a variety of music from Gregorian Chant to the popular tunes of today. So what is "TACTUS"? Well, the Oxford dictionary says: a principal accent or rhythmic unit, especially in 15th and 16th century music. For Borah, Tactus, is the pulse within. Year after year Tactus' charisma, energy, love of music, natural talent, brotherhood and ability to have fun at all times makes the group the pulse of Borah Choirs. All of the Borah Choirs hold a special role for the department, but Tactus is definitely the heartbeat. It is what keeps everyone on their toes at ALL times!
Heather Prinzing has been teaching choral music in the Boise School District since 2002.  She spent her first two years at East Junior High and Hillside Junior High in Boise, ID. Her next four years were spent only at East Junior High where she directed four choral ensembles. Under her direction, the choral program at East received awards and honors for excellence at local and regional choral festivals, including an invitation to perform at the 2007 Idaho ACDA Fall Retreat with guest clinician Andre Thomas and at the 2008 Northwestern ACDA Convention in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Mrs. Prinzing is now the choral music educator and music department chair at Borah High School (her alma mater, class of '98), also in the Boise School District, where she directs five choral ensembles and one instrumental jazz combo. The Borah Choirs have received superior ratings at festivals for the past five years under her direction. Mrs. Prinzing received her Bachelor of Music Degree from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN in 2002 where she studied and sang in the Concordia Choir under the direction of world-renowned composer, conductor and clinician Rene Clausen.
 
She has been an active member of the American Choral Director's Association and the National Association for Music Education since 1999.  She served as the Concordia Student Chapter secretary and president of ACDA during her undergraduate years.  Mrs. Prinzing also served as the Boy's Choir R & S Chair for the Idaho State Chapter of ACDA, was appointed the Women's Choir R & S Chair for the Nothwestern Chapter, and is now currently serving as the Idaho R&S Chair for Men's Choirs.

Brownsburg High School's The Blend

Deborah Prather
Deborah Prather
The premier men's ensemble at Brownsburg High School is the Blend. This is one of two men's ensembles in the choral program, both conducted by Deborah Prather. This group is popular both in the community of Brownsburg and the larger community of Indianapolis. The group consists of sophomores, juniors and seniors in high school who love singing. They regularly perform the National Anthem for athletic events as well as community events in and around the area. Camaraderie with friends and the love of music is the purpose of The Blend.
 
Deborah Prather is completing her 26th year of teaching at Brownsburg High School. During her tenure, the department has experienced growth in numbers and quality. Her ensembles are ranked in the top four in the Indiana State School Music Association's Organizational Events. Ms. Prather's choirs have performed Evensong with David Flood at Canterbury Cathedral and Philip Moore at York Minster. Most recently, her ensemble participated in Mass at St. Peter's Basilica in Rome. Ms. Prather is a frequent clinician at workshops, festivals and choral clinics in the Midwest. She is also an active church musician and holds the position of Director of Music at a Lutheran church in the Indianapolis area. 

Calgary Men's Chorus

Jean-Louis Bleau
Jean-Louis Bleau
The Calgary Men's Chorus Society is a dynamic non-profit society dedicated to excellence in the performance of men's choral music. The Chorus is open to all men. Our programs and performances are a tribute to the richness and beauty of male choral music. Since its inception in 1994, the Calgary Men's Chorus has established its place in the Calgary Arts Community while remaining an important component of Calgary's GLBT community. The CMC believes in coming together in song, in the power of music and its ability to build bridges and remove walls. We believe in reaching out to others. 
Jean-Louis Bleau is an enthusiastic and passionate choral music director known for pushing the boundaries of choral music. His passion for music is evident through his unique and expressive conducting style, and his energetic approach to rehearsals. Seeking always to push choral groups to reach beyond their perceived limitations Jean-Louis engages a variety of musical genres and styles to produce music which – while challenging – is ultimately very rewarding. In addition to directing the Calgary Men's Chorus, Jean-Louis Bleau is also the Artistic Director of Choral Programs at Mount Royal University.
 
 

Florence Men's Choral Society

Julian Young
Julian Young
Florence Men's Choral Society is a 501c3 male choral organization consisting of approximately 25 men and is open to young males and adults ages 15 and older. A volunteer choral society located in Florence, South Carolina, F.M.C.S was founded in 2007 by Artistic Director Julian M. Young and exists "to present the finest quality male choral performances that enrich the lives of audiences, performers, and other interested parties for our region." Mr. Young serves as the Director of Alumni Affairs and Annual Giving at Francis Marion University. Ms. Betsy T. Johnson serves as Assistant Director and Accompanist for the Choral Society. Auditions are held in August and January with two major performances held in the Fall and Spring of each year.
 
F.M.C.S strives to reach out to students in local school districts to provide them with musical education through private music instruction.  The F.M.C.S Young Musician Scholarship Fund has been established to encourage public school students to study music and provides financial assistance.
Mr. Julian M. Young, a native of Florence,SC is a graduate of Francis Marion University having been awarded both Bachelor of Science and Masters of Education degrees.  He currently holds the position of Director of Alumni Affairs and Annual Giving at the University. He has performed in several live stage productions at The Florence Little Theatre and The Dillon County Theatre in West Side Story, Fiddler on the Roof, My Fair Lady, The Exact Center of the Universe, and Bye- Bye Birdie
 
Involved in serving his community, Mr. Young is currently a member of Keep Florence Beautiful Board of Directors, staff advisor to the Francis Marion University Student Alumni Association and South Carolina Student Legislature.  He is also serving a three year appointment as Commissioner to the Florence County Elections Commission.  Mr. Young enjoys photography and has exhibited at the Art Trail Gallery in Florence.
 
As founder and artistic director of The Florence Men's Choral Society, Mr. Young mentors high school students who want to improve their vocal skills through private lessons and solo performances at The Society's concerts. Mr. Young is married to Rebecca Steele Young and they have one son, Russell who attends Arkansas Tech University.

The Fort Lauderdale Gay Men's Chorus

Gary Keating
Gary Keating
Over 26 years ago, Dr. Gary Keating had a vision of a gay chorus for the state of Florida. While a gay chorus was not an original idea, it certainly was in Florida. He founded the original Gay Men's Chorus of South Florida, which many years later changed their name to The Fort Lauderdale Gay Men's Chorus out of respect for other South Florida area choruses. This chorus was the first established gay arts organization in the State of Florida and has gained respect and admiration from the community over the years, both gay and straight audiences.
 
Dr. Keating earned his Bachelor of Music Education from the University of New Hampshire where he studied with Stanley Hettinger, Dr. Cleveland Howard, and Dr. Henry Wing.  Both is Masters of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts in Choral Conducting were earned at the University of Miami Frost School of Music.  While at UM, he studied with Dr. Lee Kjelson, Dr. Brian Busch, Dr. Donald Oglesby and Dr. Jo-Michael Scheibe.
 
Dr. Keating has been active as a conductor and adjudicator for the Florida Vocal Association since arriving in South Florida in 1979.  He began the Gay Men's Chorus of South Florida in 1986, the first gay-oriented chorus in the state.  He would later begin the South Florida Lambda Chorale, a mixed chorus, and assist with founding 5 other choruses in the state.  He was also the Artistic Director for The Miami Oratorio Society, The Miami Gay Men's Chorus, and The Barry University Chorale.
 
Dr. Keating is the Director/conductor of the Choral/Vocal Magnet Program at Dr. Michael M. Krop Senior High School in Miami where he conducts four choruses, teaches voice, Advanced Placement Music Theory and Music Theory I and II.

Natick High School Men’s Chorus

Charles Tyler Turner
Charles Tyler Turner