The Jacobs School of Music has a very visible presence at the biennial national conference of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), held in Salt Lake City this year from Feb. 25 to Feb. 28.
The biennial national conference is ACDA’s major programmatic event, and it will host over 7,000 choral directors, music educators, publishers, composers, singers and industry professionals from across the United States and around the world.
The 25 students of NOTUS, the Indiana University Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, and their director and assistant professor of music Dominick DiOrio are representing the Jacobs School as the featured ensemble-in-residence for the Composers Track.
NOTUS will participate in two sessions involving new music: the College/University Reading Session on Wednesday, Feb. 25, 8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. in LDS Assembly Hall, and the Student Composer Masterclass on Thursday, Feb. 26, 12:00 p.m. -1:45 p.m. in the Salt Palace Convention Center (SPCC), Room 253.
The Composers Track is a new initiative of ACDA to further incorporate composers of choral music into their programmatic offerings. NOTUS will have the opportunity to work closely with composers David Conte, Robert Kyr and Steven Sametz through this residency.
Choral Department faculty members Steve Zegree and Dominick DiOrio have been invited to give interest sessions on their areas of expertise. DiOrio will give a presentation, “Thirty-Something: New Choral Music by Today’s Hottest Young Composers,” on Wednesday, Feb. 25, at 4 p.m. in the SPCC, Room 253 A/B. Zegree will give a presentation, “Vocal Jazz Rehearsal Techniques,” on Friday, Feb. 26, at 9:45 a.m. in the SPCC, Room C/F.
Two other IU faculty members have big roles in the ACDA offerings. Professor of Music Education Patrice Madura Ward-Steinman serves as the national repertoire and standards chair for vocal jazz, and she has coordinated multiple events for attendees involving this music.
Jacobs voice faculty member Sylvia McNair will be the featured soprano at the closing concert, “A Grand Night for Singing,” on Saturday, Feb. 28, at 8 p.m. in the LDS Conference Center.
Two Jacobs School of Music doctoral students in choral conducting are also participating in high-profile events. Second-year doctoral student Maria Hagan is one of eight graduate students selected from a national pool to participate in the ACDA Graduate Student Conducting Competition. She is the first IU conducting student to participate in this contest in over a decade. First-year doctoral student Caleb Lewis is one of three students selected from across the U.S. to participate in a conducting master class with renowned British conductor Simon Halsey.
A first-year M.M. student in voice, Bille Bruley, will be singing with the professional ensemble, South Dakota Chorale, in two concerts on Saturday, Feb. 28, in Abravanel Hall and the Salt Lake Tabernacle.
The IU American Choral Directors Association student chapter will send eight young undergraduate music educators to the conference, one of whom—Jake Gadomski—was also selected to take part in the auditioned College/Community Latin-American Honor Choir with conductor Cristian Grases.
All IU alumni, students and faculty are invited to a reception hosted by associate professor of music and chair of choral conducting, Betsy Burleigh, on Friday, Feb. 27, 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. in the SPCC, Room 150 C. Light refreshments will be served.
Founded in 1959, the American Choral Directors Association is a nonprofit music-education organization whose central purpose is to promote excellence in choral music through performance, composition, publication, research and teaching. In addition, the association strives through arts advocacy to elevate choral music’s position in American society.