Wendy and Jeremiah successfully defended their dissertations at the University of Washington. Wendy's dissertation was entitled, Come Together: An Ethnography of the Seattle Men's Chorus Family. Jeremiah's dissertation was entitled, Visual and Aural Modes of Perception in Choral Performance Evaluations. Both Wendy and Jeremiah will be presenting their research at upcoming conferences.
Steven Morrison and Jeremiah Selvey just published an article on conductor expressivity in the winter edition of the Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education. Read the full journal article at JSTOR.
Wendy Moy is presenting a session entitled, Top Qualities of a Thriving Community Choir at the Connecticut American Choral Directors Conference being held at Central Connecticut State University on Saturday, October 18, 2014. For more information on attending this conference go to the CT ACDA website.
Congratulations to Jeremiah Selvey! He has just been appointed as a Lecturer, Choral/Vocal Music at Southern Illinois University! He will be teaching voice, choir and conducting classes. Check out the music department at SIU.
Can you imagine going to the Superbowl, but instead of being gathered to watch a sporting event, you've gathered to sing? Seems unlikely, doesn't it? I thought so too until the University of Washington choir tour to Estonia and Latvia. At the beginning of the tour, I had virtually no pre-existing knowledge of the unique tradition of singing in these countries. Unbeknownst to me, my perspective on singing cultures would soon be changed forever. As I stood in the Daugava stadium in the Latvian capital of Riga, a space created for the sole reason of communal singing by thousands of people, it was difficult to comprehend the magnitude of this moment in my own education as musician, conductor and artist. The stadium's emptiness created an indescribable sense of awe for the sacred space, much like walking into a grand cathedral. The palpable sense of unity and purpose was evident even among the snowy benches of the stadium.
At this moment questions surfaced in my mind that I have been attempting to answer ever since. "If communal, intentional singing could bring about peaceful revolution during the complexities of the Singing Revolution years, how much more could it contribute to the welfare of American contemporary culture?" Dr. Guntis Smidchens, head of the Baltic Studies program at the University of Washington, (and touring official during aforementioned tour) has investigated the role of music in specific during the Baltic Singing Revolutions and presents his findings in the article "Was Singing Necessary?" His research has proved invaluable in answering those questions that Riga inspired in me those years ago. Chorosynthesis dreams of getting the United States to sing in massive numbers, to connect our voice, communities, and causes.
Do you believe that singing is necessary in the United States? Perhaps you will be after reading Dr. Smidchens' article...
Chorosynthesis is very excited that the 2013 National Chorus America Conference will be hosted by Pro Musica and the Seattle Symphony/Symphony Chorus in our home town of Seattle. We hope to see everyone in the Emerald City!
"The Annual Conference is the centerpiece of Chorus America's professional development and training opportunities for chorus leaders. Each year in June the Conference is presented in a different city, in partnership with a host chorus, and brings together more than 400 choral conductors, administrators, singers, board members, and business members."
Co-founder Jeremiah Selvey has just been appointed as Artistic Director and Conductor of the Oakland-East Bay Gay Men's Chorus. He has some great plans for community engagement that will revealed soon. We wish him best wishes on his move and new job in the Bay Area! Check out the ensemble's website at www.oebgmc.org.
What does SUSTAINABILITY mean in the arts and culture field? What are the paradoxes of sustainability? Watch this short video to find out. (Diane was once the managing director of On the Boards in Seattle!)
Jeremiah was appointed the Guest Artistic Director at Windy City Performing Arts. Wendy was appointed the Director of Choral Music at Tacoma Community College and will also be directing the Bellevue Chamber Chorus for the 2012-2013 season. What does this mean for Chorosynthesis? We will continue to fulfill our mission and vision from two points in the United States. Stay tuned for more on our American Choral Summit online.
Imagine the whole country singing and valuing the art of choral performance. With this vision as the backdrop, Chorosynthesis seeks to transform and broaden the scope of American choral music by fostering four ideals in the choral arts—innovation, sustainability, collaboration, and excellence—in and among the choral arts and its communities. On the national level, Chorosynthesis is using the year 2012 to raise awareness of these four ideals by providing a forum for dialogue. Simultaneously, Chorosynthesis is empowering local communities to carry out the vision by way of community projects, presentations at conferences, and consultations with choral organizations.
Check in with us in Minneapolis! We want to connect with you. Chorosynthesis is delighted to be a co-sponsor of the Emerging Leaders . Be sure to stop by to reconnect with and meet other leaders in the field! Reception
Time: Wednesday evening, June 13, 6:30-7:45pm
Location: Solera Restaurant (900 Hennepin Ave, 55403)
For the second year in a row, Chorosynthesis received a College Music Society Seed Grant for its imaginative and exemplary community engagement projects that bring together participants in higher education and members of the local community.
The year 2012 was a year of growth for Chorosynthesis. We were challenged by an anonymous donor to raise money towards a matching grant campaign. As artists, this proved to be a challenging task for Chorosynthesis. Business? Fund-raising? What are those? In addition to all of our projects, we decided to try our hand at raising money for the organization that is working to effect change in the American choral culture. By year's end, we were able to raise $1,165 from individuals and $1,000 from organizations and grants. We are grateful to all those who support the cause of Chorosynthesis and are excited about how that will carry us into the future. Your gifts are being doubled. Thank you!tremendous
Conductors as collaborators. Wait! Is that possible? Chorosynthesis tried its hand at a collaborative effort between conductors Wendy Moy and Jeremiah Selvey in their performances of Ein deutsches Requiem by Johannes Brahms last November. Initially conceived as a collaboration among religious and educational institutions in an ecumenical liturgy designed by laypersons, scholars, musicians and ministers, "A Human Liturgy" featured collects to begin and end the service, as well as the reading of lessons in between each movement of Brahms's magnum opus. This collaborative effort from last winter strengthened the communities of those who participated and served as a benefit concert. None of the performers were paid for their services. Feel free to check the project out at www.brahmsrequiem.org.
The Washington American Choral Directors Association awarded Chorosynthesis a $500 grant for a performance as part of our American Choral Summit. As many of you are aware, we are seeking to develop this summit experience online this summer. We look forward to sharing with you our plans for utilizing this supportive gift from a fellow choral organization. More to come, as plans develop...
MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY HOLIDAYS!
It is easy to say that the product (or performance) of a group should be excellent in order for success to be achieved, but the wise judge will take into account the process (holistic development of the singers and audience) as well. Excellence is such a hot topic, but what aspects of excellence are truly essential? We will expound on our belief that excellence ...breeds a sustainable program and, in turn, more excellence. What are ways in which dynamicism in collaboration can foster excellence in ways not possible individually? How can innovation be used as a stepping stone toward excellence? In the month of December, Chorosynthesis will “rock the choral world” by redefining excellence and by making a call for specific actions toward strengthening the American culture through its choral music.
Jeremiah is assisting in the formation of the Greater Seattle Choral Consortium (GSCC), an association of local choirs with the purpose of promoting the choral art in the greater Seattle area through cooperation, public awareness, and performance. As part of the membership subcommittee, Jeremiah compiled information from 46 Seattle area choirs to create a collaborative document that announces each choir’s headliner concerts.