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Choral Performances

The following ensembles have been selected for choral performances at NCCO10, November 9 - 11, 2023, in Atlanta, Georgia.

Morehouse Glee Club

The Morehouse College Glee Club is the premier singing organization of Morehouse College, traveling all over the country and the world, demonstrating excellence not only in choral performance but also in discipline, dedication, and brotherhood. Through its tradition the Glee Club has an impressive history and seeks to secure its future through even greater accomplishments, continuing in this tradition through the dedication and commitment of its members and the leadership that its directors have provided throughout the years. It is the mission of the Morehouse College Glee Club to maintain a high standard of musical excellence.

Since the Glee Club’s origin, excellence through brotherhood, dedication and commitment and unselfish labors of love has continued in musical performance and in whatever the organization does. The current members come from all over the United States and even from other countries around the world. The Glee Club members all have different interests, which adds to the diversity of the organization. While some are music majors, members are in all academic divisions at the college. Even though some members take Glee Club as a course for credit, all members still sing as a labor of love and enjoy being ambassadors for Morehouse College.

Read the Glee Club's full bio at the NCCO10 Host page.

Dr. David Morrow, Director of the Morehouse Glee Club

David Morrow is a native of Rochester, New York. He earned the Bachelor of Arts degree from Morehouse College in 1980. While at Morehouse, he became a member of Phi Beta Kappa, was awarded the Kemper Harreld Award for Excellence in Music, received departmental honors, and graduated Valedictorian of his class. He received the Master of Music degree from the University of Michigan in 1981 and was elected to Pi Kappa Lambda. He received the Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Cincinnati College Conservatory of Music in 1995. He has studied conducting with Wendell Whalum, Thomas Hilbish, Elmer Thomas, John Leman, Earl Rivers, Elizabeth Green, Teri Murai, Fiora Contino and Donald Neuen.

Dr. Morrow has been a member of the Music faculty at Morehouse College since 1981. In 1987, he succeeded Dr. Wendell P. Whalum as Director of the Glee Club. In 2013, Dr. Morrow celebrated the 25th anniversary of his directorship of the Glee Club. Alumni and current students honored him singing Psalm 15; a piece composed for the occasion by alumnus Carlos Simon, and also presented him with a silver, engraved baton for his dedication in leadership. He is also Director of the Wendell P. Whalum Community Chorus, Co-Director of the Morehouse-Spelman Chorus, and Artistic Director and Conductor of The Atlanta Singers.

Read Dr. Morrow's full bio at the NCCO10 Host page.

Spelman Glee Club

Now celebrating its 99th season, the historic Spelman College Glee Club has maintained a reputation for choral excellence since 1924. The Glee Club performs a repertoire that includes a wide variety of selections from world cultures, commissioned works, music by African American composers, and more. Currently, under the direction of Dr. Kevin Johnson, associate professor of music, the Glee Club has performed for numerous audiences throughout the United States and abroad. As the premiere performance organization for the College, the Glee Club sings for most campus events, and celebrates every winter with their annual Spelman-Morehouse Christmas Carol Concert with the Morehouse College Glee Club.

Dr. Kevin Johnson, Associate Professor of Music

Kevin Phillip Johnson is an Associate Professor of Music at Spelman College. Dr. Johnson received his degrees from California State University, Los Angeles (B.A. M.A.) and the University of Missouri, Kansas City (D.M.A.). He is a renowned musician, conductor and composer is in demand both nationally and internationally. He is also currently the Minister of Music at The Lyke House Catholic Center at the AUC. His works have resulted in performances for church and school choruses, all-state choral festivals, Catholic Archdioceses nationwide, as well as international performances with the Spelman College Glee Club.

Dr. Johnson is an active composer, frequently writing for Catholic worship. He provides an extensive catalog, including seven mass settings, more than 300 psalm settings and many sacred songs. Under his direction, the Glee Club has recorded seven compact disc recordings and more than 20 recordings of the Spelman- Morehouse Christmas Carol concert, which celebrated its 97th anniversary in December 2023. As a professional composer, Dr. Johnson has been commissioned to compose several works, most recently including “Lift Every Voice and Sing Trilogy”, “Spirituals”, two multi movement works for chorus and orchestra, several commissioned works with Spelman College including the popular settings, "A Choice to Change the World", "We Are Christmas”, and many mass settings for Catholic worship including, "The Mass of Faith", “The Preacher’s Mass” , “The Mass of St. Benedict the African” and many others.

Dr. Johnson has been published with Colla Voce, GIA Publications, and Treble Clef Press. He continues to publish most of his music through his very own publishing company, In 2022, He joins Carl Fisher Publishing family with his own Kevin Phillip Johnson – Soulful Singing Choral Series.

Auburn University Chamber Choir

The Chamber Choir is the premier choral ensemble at Auburn University. Under the direction of Dr. William C. Powell, the group was formed in 2008, becoming the seventh choir in the music department. They have sung for conferences led by the National Association for Music Educators and the American Choral Directors Association; and they have sung abroad in Ireland and Italy, and at national landmarks such as Carnegie Hall, the Lincoln Center, and Washington National Cathedral. Auburn choral students recently performed in London’s Cadogan Hall for the British premiere of The Cry of Jeremiah by Rosephanye Powell.

NCCO10 Program:
"The Music of Rosephanye Powell"

Dr. William Powell, Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities

William Powell is director of choral activities and began teaching at Auburn University in 2001. He is a frequent guest conductor for district, regional, and state choral festivals, and he is a regular adjudicator for Festival Disney. His choral arrangements are published by Fred Bock Music, Hal Leonard Corporation, and Oxford University Press. Powell serves as a southeastern representative on the NCCO National Board, and he is a member of American Choral Directors Association, National Association for Music Educators, National Association of Negro Musicians, and ASCAP.

Azuza Pacific University Chamber Singers

The APU Chamber Singers have performed in over a dozen countries and territories, with featured performances at Sydney Opera House and for the 75th anniversary at Buchenwald Concentration Camp.

Competitions include International Competition of Choirs in Spittal (2013- first in every category), Eisteddfod in Llangollen (2015-first in three, second in three categories), European Grand Prix (2017) and Marktoberdorf (2017). The ensemble performed at NCCO conferences in 2011 and 2015.

NCCO10 Program:
"Sir Charles V. Stanford: His Music and His Legacy"

Dr. Michelle Jensen, Director of Choral Activities

Michelle Jensen serves as the Director of Choral Activities and the Conductor of the Chamber Singers at Azusa Pacific University. She earned her BM, MME and DMA at the University of Southern California. Jensen has led performances on four continents. In 2019, she conducted the Connecticut All-State Honor Choir. She is also the Founder and Artistic Director of the Sterling Ensemble Los Angeles. In 2023, the ensemble performed at the ACDA National Conference in Cincinnati.

East Carolina University Chamber Singers

The ECU Chamber Singers is of comprised of 36-40 auditioned singers, primarily voice majors within the School of Music. The group consistently receives invitations to perform at various conferences, including North Carolina ACDA (2021), Southern ACDA (2020), National ACDA (2019), and the European Grand Prix for Choral Singing (2016). Recently, the ensemble recorded two full-length professional albums, Silence and Music (2023) and Appear and Inspire (2021), with multi-GRAMMY winning producers.

NCCO10 Program:
"The Music of Composer Benedict Sheehan"

Dr. James Franklin, Director of Choral Activities

James Franklin is the Director of Choral Activities at East Carolina University where he conducts the Chamber Singers and University Chorale, directs the graduate program in choral conducting, and teaches undergraduate conducting. Franklin is a GRAMMY-nominated choral singer, and has performed with PaTRAM Institute Male Choir, Saint Tikhon Choir, South Dakota Chorale, and Taylor Festival Choir. He holds degrees from Baylor University, Westminster Choir College, and the University of North Texas.

Florida State University Chamber Choir

The Florida State University Chamber Choir is an auditioned, SATB ensemble made up of graduate and undergraduate students, as well as faculty and staff. The choir specializes in the performance of extended choral works. Recent performances include J. S. Bach’s St. John Passion, Jocelyn Hagen’s The Notebooks of Leonardo DaVinci, G. F. Handel’s Messiah, Craig Hella Johnson’s Considering Matthew Shepard, and Robert Ray’s Gospel Mass.

NCCO10 Program:
The Notebooks of Leonardo da Vinci, by Jocelyn Hagen

Dr. Michael Hanawalt, Director of Graduate Choral Studies

Michael Hanawalt is the Director of Graduate Choral Studies at Florida State University, where he conducts the Chamber Choir, teaches graduate courses in conducting and choral literature, and serves as Artistic Director for the Tallahassee Community Chorus. Dr. Hanawalt was formerly the Executive Director of the professional male vocal ensemble Cantus. He is active as a tenor soloist, guest conductor, and arranger, with works published by Boosey & Hawkes, Kjos Music, and Alfred.

Georgia Southern University Southern Chorale

Southern Chorale is the premiere choral ensemble of Georgia Southern University. This primarily undergraduate ensemble performs literature from all styles and periods with an emphasis on a cappella repertoire and masterworks with orchestra. Southern Chorale has appeared at conferences of NCCO, ACDA, and NAfME and has won significant prizes in multiple international choral competitions, most recently, winning the Sing Berlin Competition and placing in the ICCC, Marktoberdorf, Germany.

NCCO10 Program:
"There Has To Be A Song"

Dr. Shannon Jeffreys, Director of Choral Activities

Dr. Shannon Jeffreys is Professor of Music and DCA at Georgia Southern University. Her focus is the Southern Chorale, teaching in the undergraduate and graduate conducting and music education curriculums. She has led these choirs in six international choral competitions and two national competitions where the choirs won significant awards. In 2019, she received the Conductor’s Award from the Ave Verum International Choral Competition in Baden, Austria.

Missouri State University Women's Chorus

Founded in 2014, the Missouri State University Women’s Chorus is open to all MSU students interested in singing challenging music in a wide range of styles. Women’s Chorus personnel consist mostly of undergraduate students who come from diverse backgrounds and a variety of majors. This ensemble tours throughout the region, and were recently invited to perform at the Missouri Music Educators Association 2022 conference, the 2022 SWACDA conference, and the 2023 ACDA national conference.

NCCO10 Program:
This Love Between Us: Prayers for Unity, by Reena Esmail (world premiere of SSA edition)

Dr. Erin Plisco, Associate Director of Choral Studies

Erin Plisco is the Associate Director of Choral Studies at Missouri State University, where she conducts multiple choirs and teaches choral conducting and literature. She is a frequent clinician across the United States and abroad, currently serves as the ACDA National SSAA R&R Chair, and is a conducting fellow for ACDA’s International Conductor Exchange Program. Choirs under her direction recently performed at the 2022 SWACDA and MMEA Conferences, and the 2023 national ACDA Conference.

NOTUS: Indiana University Contemporary Vocal Ensemble

Winner of The American Prize in Choral Performance (2019), NOTUS is one of the country’s most unique collegiate vocal ensembles, with a commitment to championing new works. Directed by conductor-composer Dominick DiOrio, NOTUS has performed across the nation, from regional and national ACDA conferences to Carnegie Hall. NOTUS was honored to be one of only 24 choirs in the world invited to perform at the 12th World Symposium on Choral Music before it was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

NCCO10 Program:
"America in Progress"

Dr. Dominick DiOrio, Professor of Music and Director, NOTUS

Dominick DiOrio has been recognized with The American Prizes in both Choral Composition (2014) and Choral Performance (2019, with NOTUS). Since 2012, he has served on the faculty at Indiana University where he leads NOTUS and teaches courses in conducting, score reading, ear training, and music entrepreneurship for graduate and undergraduate students. He is Artistic Director of the Mendelssohn Chorus of Philadelphia and also past-president of NCCO (2020-21).

Princeton University Chamber Choir

The Princeton University Chamber Choir is a select group of mixed voices that sings a range of challenging music from the Renaissance period through the twenty-first century. The ensemble performs in concert with the Princeton University Glee Club as well as on a separate concert series, and is frequently invited to perform off campus. Recent repertoire has included Handel's 'Dixit Dominus', Bach's complete Motets, Mary Lou Williams' 'Black Christ of the Andes' and Poulenc's 'Figure Humaine'.

NCCO10 Program:
Figure Humaine, by Francis Poulenc

Prof. Gabriel Crouch, Director of Choral Activities

Gabriel Crouch is DCA at Princeton. His career began aged 8 in the choir of Westminster Abbey, where his solo credits included a Royal Wedding. After a scholarship at Trinity College Cambridge, he served in The King's Singers for 8 years. As director of the ensemble 'Gallicantus' his most recent release is Mass for the Endangered by Sarah Kirkland Snider, which spent several weeks at number 1 on the Classical Album charts, and received high acclaim from the New York Times, NPR and elsewhere.

Queens University Royal Voices of Charlotte

Royal Voices of Charlotte were formed in 2019 by Dr Justin Smith, Director of Choral Activities at Queens University, as an auditioned choir performing repertoire of all types. In 2022, they performed by invitation at the North Carolina American Choral Directors Association state conference, sang at Carnegie Hall and collaborated with Bach Akademie Charlotte at their Charlotte Bach Festival. This summer they travel to British Columbia, Canada to compete in the International Choral Kathaumixw.

NCCO10 Program:
Credo, by Margaret Bonds

Dr. Justin Smith, Director of Choral Activities

Dr. Justin Smith is Director of Choral Activities at Queens University of Charlotte, conducting three choirs and teaching courses in music history, conducting and film music. He was formerly the Director of Choral Activities at Marylhurst University. Smith is also the founder and director of the award-winning Portland Phoenix Chamber Choir, in Portland, Oregon. He earned his DMA from the University of Houston. with additional degrees from Wesleyan University and the University of Oregon.

University of South Carolina Concert Choir

The flagship choral ensemble at the University of South Carolina, the Concert Choir has performed across the US and in prestigious venues around the world. The longtime hallmarks of the ensemble include a commitment to premiering new music, performance of literature that is culturally and socially relevant and diversity of programming reflecting the depth and breadth of the choral repertoire.

NCCO10 Program:
"Flights of Angels: Music of Cecilia McDowall"

Dr. Alicia Walker, Director of Choral Activities

Alicia W. Walker is Professor of Music and Director of Choral Studies at the University of South Carolina, where she directs the Concert Choir and the Garnet Chorale (SSAA) and supervises the graduate conducting program. She is frequently invited to conduct and teach in the UK, South Africa, and in Taiwan. Dr. Walker’s pedagogy and professional interactions are marked by a commitment to excellence, collaboration, and inclusion.

Columbus State University Schwob Singers

Schwob Singers is the premiere auditioned choral ensemble at the Schwob School of Music comprised of voice majors and other talented undergraduate and graduate students across many disciplines at Columbus State University. Repertoire selections are diverse and typically include works from the standard canon as well as contemporary choral works and premieres of newly commissioned works. In addition to national tours, Schwob Singers frequently performs for university recruiting and donor events.

NCCO10 Conducting Masterclass:
selections from The Oxford Book of Choral Music by Black Composers, ed. Marques L. A. Garrett

Dr. David Hahn, Director of Choral Activities

David Hahn is the Paul S. and Jean R. Amos Distinguished Chair in Music and Director of Choral Activities at Columbus State University. At the CSU Schwob School of Music, Hahn conducts the Schwob Singers, Choral Union, and teaches graduate and undergraduate conducting. Hahn holds the DMA in choral conducting from the University of Michigan, an MM degree in conducting from the Eastman School of Music, and the BM degree in Sacred Music & Vocal Performance from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, IL.

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