Who Are The Brave: Music in Honor of President’s Day

Who Are The Brave: Music in Honor of President’s Day
Monday, Feb 17, 2020
7:00 PM
Stern Auditorium/Perelman Stage, Carnegie Hall
Mack Wilberg, Composer/Conductor
The Music of Mack Wilberg
Featuring Distinguished Concerts Orchestra and Distinguished Concerts Singers International
Joseph Michael Martin, Composer/Conductor
The Music of Joseph Martin
Featuring Distinguished Concerts Orchestra and Distinguished Concerts Singers International
Robert Istad, Guest Conductor
Christopher W. Peterson, Guest Conductor
Bernstein: Chichester Psalms
Hanson: Song of Democracy

Featuring Distinguished Concerts Orchestra and Distinguished Concerts Singers International

Contact us about this concert and future performance opportunities.

Participating Ensembles:

Chariton High School Concert Choir
Deseret Chamber Choir
Sycamore Community Singers (Ohio/United States)
The Celebration Choir of First Baptist Church of Perry
Gold Coast Concert Chorus
Kennesaw United Methodist Church Choirs
GREAT FALLS COMMUNITY GOSPEL CHOIR
The Anson Singers
Community United Methodist Church Choir
Citrus Community Concert Choir
Riverside Poly High School Choir

Chariton High School Concert Choir

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Tyler J. Urich
The Chariton High School Concert Choir is under the direction of Mr. Tyler Urich. Mr. Urich earned his Bachelor of Music Education degree from Wartburg College in 2007, and has completed graduate work through the University of Northern Iowa. While at Wartburg, he had the opportunity to perform in some of the most famous opera houses and cathedrals in the world. In May of 2014, he was awarded the Professional Educators of Iowa Teacher of the Year award. He is currently in his thirteenth year of teaching and his seventh year at Chariton High School.

The Chariton High School Concert Choir, under the direction of Mr. Tyler Urich, is the premiere vocal ensemble at Chariton High School, Chariton, IA. This select group is chosen by audition each May. The Concert Choir is comprised of 60 singers in grades 9-12. The choir rehearses and performs music of varying styles and genres. Each year, the choir looks foreword to presenting four concerts. In February, 2017, the Concert Choir made their Carnegie Hall premier, under the direction of Dr. Lee Nelson.

Deseret Chamber Choir

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Brandon A. Stroup
Brandon Stroup, Director of Choirs at Cibola High School, is in his sixteenth year of choral music education. A first-generation college graduate, Stroup received a Bachelor of Music in Music Education from Capital University, a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from Messiah College, and is pursuing a PhD in Music Education through the Liberty University School of Music. Stroup has been named Teacher of the Year three times, and in 2016 was the youngest person ever to receive the Tribute of the Muse award, in recognition of the significant contributions he has made to the arts in Yuma, Arizona.

Deseret Chamber Choir was founded in 2016 and is comprised of singers of various backgrounds and faiths; singers for whom music is their vocation, and singers for whom music is their avocation! Despite the multi-faceted backgrounds of the members, DCC is united by a desire to make positive contributions to Southwest Arizona. The choir strives to go beyond entertainment, providing meaningful experiences for musicians and audience members alike; experiences that provide hope, joy, peace, and the witness that all of these can be found in and through faith. Most recently, the choir presented Dan Forrest’s “Requiem for the Living.”

Sycamore Community Singers (Ohio/United States)

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Linda Gartner
Linda Gartner has led choral music in Cincinnati since 1980, beginning with church choral music as well as 34 years as the Director of Choral Music at Sycamore Junior High. After retirement, Mrs. Gartner decided to give back to her supportive community and founded the Sycamore Community Singers. Gartner received her Bachelor's in Music Education and Master's of Choral Conducting at Bowling Green State University under the mentorship of Dr. Ivan Trusler. She and tenor husband, Neil, are the parents of Mark/Shannon Gartner and Matthew/Belinda Gartner as well as the grandparents of two lovely grandchildren.

The Sycamore Community Singers, a multi-aged, auditioned, adult volunteer community choir was founded in 2016 under the direction of Linda Gartner. Our 115-member choir ranging from novice to highly-trained singers perform a varied repertoire of secular and sacred choral music, rehearsing every Tuesday morning at 7 AM. Combining another of Gartner’s passions, group travel, a sub-group of this choir traveled and performed throughout Germany and Austria in the spring of 2018. A future European concert tour includes Ireland and Scotland in 2021. At the end of its third season, an annual scholarship program was created for a student interested in pursuing choral conducting. Please visit us at www.sycamorecommunitysingers.com

The Celebration Choir of First Baptist Church of Perry

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Warren Rogers
Warren Rogers currently serves as the Worship Pastor of the First Baptist Church in Perry, Georgia. As a 36 year veteran of worship ministry, he has traveled all over the world in mission and concert programs. As a Worship Pastor and as a member of The Sons of Jubal and The Jubal Brass, he has played and sang in places such as China (Beijing), North Korea (Pyongyang), Israel (Jerusalem), Palestine (Bethlehem), Venezuela (Caracas), Moldova, and throughout the United States. He is married to Jerilyn Rogers and is the proud father of Joshua, Caleb, Hannah, and Jonathan.

The Celebration Choir of First Baptist Church of Perry has a long-standing tradition of providing quality musical leadership to the worship programs of their church. They not only lead worship each Sunday throughout the year, but they also provide great annual community worship events such as "A Night of Joy", "A Night of Worship", and the patriotic extravaganza, the "God Bless America Day". The Celebration Choir is comprised of all volunteers and it's membership is open to any interested church attender. The choir is under the direction of Rev. Warren Rogers and is accompanied by Brenda Bullard.

Gold Coast Concert Chorus

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Elizabeth Helms
As conductor, music director, collaborative pianist, music educator, and church musician, Elizabeth Helms plays an integral part in building and sustaining a strong, vibrant musical community in Ventura County. She currently works with Gold Coast Concert Chorus, Pacific Shores Philharmonic Foundation, Ventura College Music Department, Church of the Foothills and in her private music studio. Elizabeth received her Bachelor of Music from the University of Redlands, and Master of Arts from California Lutheran University in 2005. ​The 2018-19 season marks her 18th year with the Gold Coast Concert Chorus. As Artistic Director since 2006, she has led the chorus in its continued success, including a journey to Carnegie Hall in New York City. She was principal accompanist for the GCCC from 2000 to 2005 under the direction of her late husband, Kenneth Helms. ​As Principal Collaborative Pianist and Associate Conductor of the Master Chorale of Ventura County, her skills have been given high praise by such choral luminaries as Vance George, Conductor Emeritus of the San Francisco Symphony Chorus; Boris Brott, Music Director Emeritus of the New West Symphony; and Paul Salamunovich, Music Director Emeritus of the Los Angeles Master Chorale. ​Creating challenging learning and performance opportunities in a positive, generous environment, and helping students of all ages to find and nurture their musical voice is the focus of her work with the students of Ventura College, the singers in her choirs, and the many piano and vocal students she has taught. Ms. Helms’ deep belief in the value of music education and her enthusiasm for the collaborative arts makes her sought after as teacher, accompanist, and conductor.

The Gold Coast Concert Chorus began in January, 1988. For its first program, the Chorus’ original 35 singers and two other choirs in Ventura, presented Mendelssohn’s “Hymn of Praise” to celebrate Trinity Lutheran Church’s 50th anniversary. The original goal of the chorus was to “provide an opportunity for people to sing, but without the stringent qualifications required by organizations with a classical repertoire.” This philosophy piqued the interest of the choral community and the chorus quickly expanded. Today, the Gold Coast Concert Chorus is proud to be Ventura’s largest community chorus consisting of over 100 active singers. ​The Chorus adopted a format of presenting a holiday concert incorporating familiar tunes, a mid season concert consisting ofchoral classics, and a spring concert of light mixtures of choral selections. The GCCC has also actively participated in several community outreach events throughout the years. In 1996, the Chorus began “Klassics for Kids”, a special performance program brought to children as a means of introducing them to the world of choral music. Gold Coast Concert Chorus has represented Ventura’s musical community in several successful concert tours including performing in Carnegie Hall (under the direction of John Rutter) and Lincoln Center in 1991, Great Britain -1995, and to France, Italy and Croatia in 1998. The chorus toured Central and Eastern Europe in 2001 and performed the British premiere of Morten Lauridsen’s “Lux Aeterna” with members of the English Symphony Orchestra in 2004. In February of 2013, this versatile group came full circle and returned to Carnegie Hall on an invitation to participate in a joint choral concert of Carol Barnett’s “The World Beloved: A Bluegrass Mass.”

Kennesaw United Methodist Church Choirs

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Christine Edwards Salazar
Christine has been directing choirs of all ages for ten years and brings her passion for music and worship to this wonderful experience at Carnegie Hall. She began her ministry while studying music education at Kennesaw State University, and went on to broaden her spiritual abilities through masters studies in Worship Arts at Dallas Theological Seminary. She is grateful for Kennesaw United Methodist Church, where she has had the opportunity to engage in both modern and traditional worship with her husband, Guillermo. Christine looks forward to continuing her ministry work in service of Jesus Christ for many years to come.

Kennesaw United Methodist Church is proud home to two children’s choirs, a youth choir, and two adult choirs. Nestled in the northern suburbs of Atlanta, GA, KUMC is a diverse and welcoming church, and the choral ensembles reflect that passion for showing God’s love to the community. The combined youth and adult choirs present two full-length concerts every year with a professional orchestra aside from leading in weekly worship services. The choir is excited about the opportunity to stand the Carnegie Hall stage and perform with Joseph Martin, one of their favorite composers. Praise God for this amazing opportunity.

GREAT FALLS COMMUNITY GOSPEL CHOIR

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CHRISTELL ENGRAM-BENSON
Christell has a rich and vibrant background. After a traumatic brain injury, she continues to rise above all seemingly limitations. At the age of 10 yrs. Christell began her musical journey, attending Iris Daniel Engel School of Music and expanded her repertoire to add classical music. Her experience includes being a back-up singer for several Gospel Recording Artist. Traveling abroad to minister, such as Slovakia and other European countries. A graduate of Florida College of Natural Health, and is a passionate entrepreneur, motivational speaker, published author and mother of (5) adult children. She was a television hostess and originator of a local morning show, "New Beginnings" and a recipient of the HOMETOWN Hero Award for Great Falls, Mt. as well as the Professional Woman Network (PWN) Award in Chicago. As a military dependent the journey broadened and the world of music expanded. I'M FULL OF MUSIC, I'M MADE OF MUSIC, MUSIC IS MY MAIN ENTREE.

Great Falls CommUNITY Gospel Choir is a non- denominational ministry with the sole purpose of glorifying God in Praise and Worship. We all live in Montana, Each voice brings a uniqueness to the audience that exudes joy. The members represent over a dozen different churches in the community. Singing in venues such as Governor and Mayor Prayer Breakfast, Montana State University, University of Providence, Black History Month celebrations, MLK Day, Harlem Globe Trotters, Weddings, Funeral, Fundraisers and many more celebrations. We love to manifest Love in song and offer our ministry of song in the hope that our voices will lead to greater UNITY in the CommUNITY.

The Anson Singers

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Emily Privette
Emily Privette is no stranger to the world of music and performing arts. Having two music educators as parents, Privette found her path to music at an early age. She is now an elementary music teacher, Director of Music at First UMC in Wadesboro, NC, a performer with the Ansonia Theatre, and Director and Founder of the Anson Singers. When Privette started the Anson Singers in 2011, she never imagined the group would perform at Carnegie Hall! While music is Privette's passion, her joy is found in the faces of her husband, Rodney, and two beautiful children, Greyson and Brooks.

The Anson Singers is a community choir with members from Anson and surrounding counties. The group performs a variety of classical and contemporary repertoire, including old American hymns, folk songs, Broadway's best, poems in choral settings, Christmas classics, and well-known works such as Handel's Messiah and Mendelssohn's Elijah. The group is directed by Emily Privette, accompanied by Gail Litaker. and meets at First United Methodist Church in Wadesboro, NC.

Community United Methodist Church Choir

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Dr. Martha Springstead

Dr. Martha Springstead has served as Director of Music at Community United Methodist Church in Virginia Beach for 28 years. A public school music educator for over 40 years, she is a sought after accompanist and choral clinician. Currently, Dr. Springstead is a university supervisor of vocal music student teachers, and a collaborative pianist for two universities.


The Chancel Choir at Community United Methodist Church has been in existence for over 60 years and participates in weekly worship. The music ministry has choirs at every level, including a men's choir and a women's choir, youth and two children's choir, along with hand bells and an orchestra.

Citrus Community Concert Choir

Ms. Medrano took over the choir in 2018 from its founding director, Jacki Scott. She is also Director of Music for First Presbyterian Church, Inverness, FL, and organizes annual festival choirs to raise funds for Habitat For Humanity.

This is the choir's 2nd trip to Carnegie Hall with DCINY, and they are thrilled to be participating in this concert. The choir is made up of volunteers who purchase their own music. All donations and proceeds go to scholarships for students continuing with their musical education.

Riverside Poly High School Choir

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Kristen Walton

Kristen Walton is in her seventh year as the director of choirs at Riverside Poly High School. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from CSU Fullerton. She currently sings as a member of Pacific Chorale and serves on the board for the Southern California Vocal Association.


Riverside Poly High School Choir is comprised of members from two ensembles, Chamber Singers and Bella Voce. These students are part of a very active program that performs throughout Southern California and the United States. Students from this ensemble regularly participate in regional and national honor choirs as well as numerous Southern California Festivals.