Summer 2017 page 1

Carolina Caroler
A two-time award-winning publication of
the North Carolina Chapter of the
American Choral Directors Association

NC ACDA Welcomes Inside
President’s 2-3

Dr. Jo-Michael Scheibe

Fall 4

to 2017 Fall Conference NC ACDA

National 6-7

About the 8

A Tribute to 9-11
The Fall NC ACDA Weston Noble

Conference, held in A Cappella 12-
and the 13
Raleigh this year Curriculum
October 6-7, will Success with 15-
feature renowned Adult Church

conductor and
Newsletter 20
clinician Jo-Michael Update
Scheibe of the NC Sings! Info 22-
University of Southern and Application 23
California’s Thornton ACDA 24
School of Music. More Application
information on page 3.
Officers 2

Specially 4

R&R Chairs 5-6

North Carolina Sings! info on page 25!
page 2 C a r oCarolina
l i n a C aCaroler

NC ACDA Officers President’s Message:
Ah, Spring!
ANNE SAXON Anne Saxon, NC ACDA President

Winston-Salem Girl’s Chorus
4105 Sewanee Drive pring is a time of renewal and change, and while
Winston-Salem, NC 27106
336.922.4073 (home) refreshing, can also be a little daunting. There is lots to
336.413.8227 (mobile) do; as the earth replenishes itself, most of us are going into a
mode of “season wrap-up,” celebrating musical milestones,
Past President and final planning for the next cycle of music. When I
Young Voices of the Carolinas consult a thesaurus about the word “spring,” words that come up are: Bounce,
2517 Fort Street Give, Flexibility, Movement, Seedtime, Leap, Bound, Vault, Upwelling,
Charlotte, NC 28205
704.451.4194 mobile Fountain, Jump, and Skip. I am confident that NC ACDA is having a NEW
704.374.1892 x24 SPRING at this moment in time. Many of us have felt an “upwelling”, a renewed
font, that has been rising from our membership over the past couple of years. A lot
ANDY ROBY has changed in the world, and we are working to “push the edges of the envelope”
First Baptist Church Shelby to not only stay current, but be on the cutting edge. It is an exciting time, indeed!
120 North Lafayette Street
Shelby, NC 28150
704.482.3467 Even though you may not receive one of our updates for several weeks at a time,
please know that our work is constant and
Secretary & Registrar
BETHANY JENNINGS ongoing. Whether it is planning for an I am confident that NC ACDA
Stuart Cramer High School event, preparing the newsletter, is having a NEW SPRING
101 Lakewood Road
Belmont, NC 28012 contacting new members, sponsoring at this moment in time.
336.501.0103 Student Chapters, collaborating with
other organizations, updating the web site…we are always working for you. This is
CAROLYN HALL all done by volunteers, which I find astounding! I rarely find a person in this
High Point Young Voices profession who works merely for a paycheck. Therefore, it is safe to say that we
4504 Talavera Drive
High Point, NC 27265 are a group of professionals who have answered a “Calling” to do what we do,
336.841.0571 (home) day in and day out, year after year, and even well into retirement. I daresay one
704.674.6948 (mobile) could not do it otherwise, for it can be quite challenging, yet rewarding in other
Membership Chair
6200 Maple Cove Lane
Charlotte, NC 28269 I want to congratulate Wendy Looker as our newly elected President-Elect!
704.231.8443 Wendy begins in her new role on July 1. Her bio is included on page 8. I am
confident that you will support her as she begins her new role in NC ACDA. I will
Newsletter Editor be meeting with our current President-Elect, Andy Roby, to discuss my “passing the
First Baptist Church baton” of Presidency to him on July 1, in the coming days. We are fortunate to have
125 South John Street such great leadership ready to “roll up their sleeves” and begin working.
Goldsboro, NC 27530
919.735.2516 ext. 105 (church)
919.330.8013 (mobile)
Those of us who traveled to Minneapolis in March (and braved the icy wind!) to
attend the national conference returned inspired and awed. We made new
friendships, renewed old ones, and learned about new and exciting methodologies

(cont’d on next page)
Summer 2017 page 3

P r e s i d e n t ’ s M e s s a ge ( c o n t ’ d ) NC ACDA Presidents
to use and share. It is difficult to choose what I enjoyed the most be-
1964 Paul Fry*
cause there were SO many wonderful things to see and do! But I will
say that at the top of my list was experiencing “A St. Olaf Christmas” 1968 Paul Peterson*
in a beautiful concert hall, complete with narration and pageantry. It 1970 Carl Crostedt*
was absolutely stunning, and much better than viewing it on televi-
1974 Joel Stegall
1977 Clinton Parker
If you have not had an opportunity to attend a state, divisional, or 1979 Gary Shive
national conference, IT IS WORTH ARRANGING!!! Here are some 1980 David Pegg
ACDA things to plan for: our fall conference will be on October 6-7 at
1981 Unknown
a NEW SITE: Christ Baptist Church in Raleigh. Dr. Jo-Michael
Scheibe from the University of Southern California will be our featured 1983 Robert P. Keener*
clinician, and we are in for a real treat. The Southern Division 1985 Richard G. Cox
Conference will be in Louisville, Kentucky, next February, with
1987 Rhonda J. Fleming
everyone housed in the Galt House, a stone’s throw from the
convention center. The last divisional conference in 2008 at this site 1989 Robert Holquist
was fantastic, so I am sure it will be worth attending. Also, our annual 1991 Hilary Apfelstadt
NC ACDA Luncheon in Winston-Salem during the NCMEA
1993 Noel Lovelace
Conference will be on Monday, November 13. PLEASE mark your
calendars and plan to attend at least ONE of these events, if not 1995 Joel F. Reed
more! 1997 William Carroll
1999 Reta R. Phifer
Why does this matter? It is while we are in the company of others who
share the same passion that we can gain inspiration, collegiality, 2001 Maribeth Yoder-White
comradery, and yes, renewal. That is what NC ACDA is all about. Can 2003 Ann Pratt Long
you feel it, this UPWELLING from within our organization producing 2005 Janna K. Brendell
a new FOUNTAIN from which to drink? So, then let us Bounce, Give,
2007 Tom Shelton
Flex, Move, Plant, Leap, Bound, Vault, and Jump ahead as we
move forward, renewed and ready for this change. This time is ripe 2009 Daniel Bara
with opportunity, and everyone has something to contribute towards 2011 Ginger Wyrick
the whole. And oh, what beautiful fruit it can yield!
2013 Welborn Young
One last thought: let us not forget about SKIPPING as we move for- 2015 Sandy Holland
ward, joyously and unbounded as young children. Why? Because you 2017 Anne Murray Saxon
and I are important, and we ARE making a difference in the world,
each and every day, in this work that we do. Please never doubt that.

~ Anne ■

The Carolina Caroler is published three times a year by the North Carolina Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association
(NC ACDA). © Copyright 2017 by NC ACDA. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in
any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and/or re-
trieval system, without express written consent of NC ACDA.
page 4 Carolina Caroler

M a k e Yo u r P l a n s f o r NC ACDA Specially
Appointed Officers
the Fall Conference
October 6-7, 2017 Auditions

Guilford College, Greensboro
orth Carolina ACDA is privileged to host 336.316.2423 (office)
Dr. Jo-Michael Scheibe as our featured
Conference Exhibits
clinician for the 2017 Fall Conference. He chairs LIZ DOEBLER
the Thornton School of Music’s department of High Point Univ., High Point
Choral and Sacred Music at the University of
Southern California. Currently serving as Chair
Conference Site Host
of the Past President’s Council of the American FRED SPANO
Choral Director’s Association (ACDA), Scheibe UNC-Charlotte
has served as National President, National
President-Elect, Western Division President, and Historian
National Repertoire and Standards Chairperson JOEL STEGALL
for Community Colleges. Under his leadership, the USC Thornton Chamber 336.721.1719
Singers received the 2015 American Prize in Choral Music, performed for the
2015 ACDA National Convention in Salt Lake City (his seventh appearance at NC Sings! Facilitator
that event) and were one of twenty-five choirs PATRICK SCHELL
Meadowlark Middle School
selected to perform at the Tenth World Choral Winston-Salem
Symposium in Seoul, South Korea in 2014. In
great demand across the nation and
Hoggard Award Chair
internationally as a clinician and conductor, SAM DOYLE
Dr. Scheibe is considered one of the leading Weaver Academy, Greensboro
advocates and leaders in choral music today.
His sessions will include, “Seating, Placement,
and Vital Colors for Your Choir,” “The KELLY TURNER
Purpose-Driven Warm-ups,” and “Consonants: The Key to Intonation.” Learn 336.655.8798
more of his story and read his inspiring blog at

Technology Chair
In addition to these clinician sessions, the Fall Conference will feature a number WILLIAM “BUCK”
of choral performances selected by audition, interest sessions that will inspire and Shelby
help you in your work with your choirs, the newest version of “NC Sings!” for 864.515.8280
young choristers, and awesome fellowship with friends and colleagues.
Conference Reading Sessions
This year’s Fall Conference will be hosted by Christ Baptist Church, 400 Newton Gardner-Webb University
Boiling Springs
Road, Raleigh, NC 27615. Make your reservation at the Conference Hotel, the 704.406.3992
Hilton North Raleigh/Midtown (code CHOR), now at the rate of $129. This rate
is available October 5-9 in case you need to arrive early or wish to stay additional President’s Council Advisor
nights. Visit UNC Greensboro
CHOR-20171006/index.jhtml for more information or call the hotel directly at 336.334.5493
919.872.2323. Registration for the Conference itself will be available soon. ■
Summer 2017 page 5

NC ACDA Repertoire
& Resource Chairs Wa y n e H u g o b o o m : A C D A ’ s
Barbershop First Executive Director
Methodist University, and Founding Editor of
910.630.7151 The Choral Journal
Joel Stegall, NC ACDA Historian

Raleigh Boychoir t can be argued that Wayne Hugoboom, more than any
Green Hope High School, Cary
252.315.1718 other single individual, was responsible for the astonishing
growth of ACDA. The seminal idea for ACDA came from Archie Jones, at the
Children’s Choirs time choral director at the University of Texas, but Hugoboom, with remarkable
Hope Middle School executive, publishing and marketing gifts, ensured the organization’s success.
Greenville Choral Society
Children’s Chorus
252.375.4673 In the spring of 1966, Wayne Hugoboom, by that time ACDA executive secretary and editor of The Choral Journal; Paul Fry, Albemarle Senior High School and
College/University Choirs Southern Division chairman; and, Paul Peterson, North Carolina chairman and
East Carolina University
choral director at Salem College, convened the Tar Heel State’s first ACDA
469.744.2786 meeting. Held at Salem College in what was then a brand new fine arts building,
the purpose was to explain ACDA and encourage North Carolina choral directors
Two-Year College Choirs to join.
UNC Pembroke
910.775.4152 By the time Hugoboom came to Salem College for the 1996 meeting, he was
already well-known in the state. Ten years earlier, when he was choral director at
Community Choirs
Marshall University in West Virginia, Hugoboom had conducted the NC All-State
Rutherford Community Chorus Chorus in Aycock Auditorium at Woman’s College (now UNCG).
Forest City
828.289.4638 At the 1966 Salem College gathering, Hugoboom spoke at a banquet, not only
Ethnic Music making the case for ACDA, but talking about the art of music. As a young choral
GERALD KNIGHT director, I was impressed that he suggested that a fermata should be an indication
Elon University, Elon
803.348.8520 to “sustain,” not “hold” a note. That distinction seemed important to me then; in fact, it still does. Hugoboom also conducted a reading session that included
Jazz Choirs Hindemith’s Six Chansons. I was among those who joined ACDA as a result of
Elon University, Elon that meeting. Wayne Hugoboom,
336.278.5681 along with Paul Fry and Paul
Peterson, planted ACDA in North
Music in Worship Carolina. Others would water the
Christ Baptist Church, Raleigh plant and keep it fertilized. ■
Editor’s Note: This article was excerpted
from The History of NC ACDA.
page 6 Carolina Caroler

Reflecting on Minneapolis 2017 NC ACDA Repertoire
& Resource Chairs
Andrew Roby, NC ACDA President -Elect
Men’s Choirs

hortly before ACDA gathered for our national conference Asheville Christian Academy
in March, a writer for the Minneapolis Star Tribune Swannanoa
identified us as the “invasion of the choral geeks.” He went on
to describe us: Junior High/
Middle School Choirs
The American Choral Directors Association, the world’s largest Lexington Middle School
association of choirs, is holding its national conference in Lexington
Minneapolis starting Tuesday. That means about 15,000
conductors, composers, teachers, students and performers, from
Senior High School Choirs
a youth chorale from Lake Wobegon country to a choir from Inner Mongolia, will CAROL EARNHARDT
Glenn High School
be in town. They’ll spend 4½ days singing, listening to singing, talking about Kernersville
singing, even drinking beer while singing. 336.771.4500

As predicted, thousands of choral geeks did arrive in Minneapolis, filling concert halls, Show Choirs
churches, and convention center spaces with an astounding array of choral music William A Hough High School
performance, scholarship, and inspiration. Restaurants, pubs, and lobbies resounded Cornelius
with the spirited conversation of conference attendees, resulting in many renewed
friendships and strengthened ties among members of the choral community. Student Activities
Meredith College, Raleigh
ACDA National Conferences have been for me, without exception, filled with 919.760.8549
memorable and inspirational moments in concerts, and the 2017 Minneapolis
gathering brought many of them. Even by ACDA’s lofty expectations, this year’s Women’s Choirs
international choirs were exceptional. “Amazed” is not too strong a word to describe NANA WOLFE-HILL
Wingate University, Wingate
my reaction to the Inner Mongolian Children’s Choir. “Impressed” was my response 651.208.4153
to the awe-inspiring work of the many selected and honor choirs. “Inspired” is the
right word for how I felt at the conclusion of the Conference, as I reflected on new
repertoire, insights, and ideas.
NC ACDA Vision
NC ACDA enriches our
Southern Division was well-represented by performing groups, honor choir members, diverse lives and empowers
communities through the
conductors, and interest session clinicians. North Carolina’s own Eric Johnson had two transformative nature of the
enthusiastically received and helpful sessions titled, “The Three R’s of Middle School: choral arts.
Recruit, Retain, Repeat.” Heather Buchanan, whom we in NC will claim because she
appeared at last year’s NC ACDA Fall Conference, shared a Body Mapping session. NC ACDA Mission
Minneapolis served as a splendid host city, providing excellent venues and hospitality, NC ACDA invests in the
development and growth of
as well as the helpful indoor walkway system that allowed us to (mostly) avoid the choral arts through
walking long distances in the wintry outdoor weather. exceptional experiences in
artistry, innovations, diversity,
and leadership.
Next up: NC ACDA Fall Conference in Raleigh, October 6-7. Then, Louisville,
Kentucky, for the Southern Division Conference, February 24-28, 2018. Make your
plans to meet us there! ■
Summer 2017 page 7

Top left: Inner Mongolia Youth Choir
Middle left: Children’s Honor Choir
Bottom left: Interest session on aging choirs
Top right: Mt. San Antonio Chamber Singers
Middle right: President Saxon with Past President Hilary
Bottom right: Convention Center lobby
page 8 Carolina Caroler

About Our New President-Elect,
D r. We n d y L o o k e r

W e are excited to welcome Dr. Wendy Looker as the new President-Elect of NC
ACDA. Dr. Looker is Associate Professor of Music and Director of Choral
Activities at Guilford College in Greensboro, where she has chaired the Music
Department and more recently, the Division of Fine Arts. In addition to directing the
College Choir and LUMINA treble ensemble, Dr. Looker teaches conducting, early
music history, vocal performance and class voice. The College Choir and Chamber Singers have toured
Ireland, Prague, Austria, and up and down the East coast. The Guilford College Chamber Singers performed at
the NC-ACDA fall conference in 2010.

Dr. Looker maintains memberships in ACDA, NAfME, and The National College Choral Organization, of
which Guilford College is a Founding Institutional Member. Wendy acts as Auditions Chair on the NCACDA
board, contributes to the recently convened Visioning Team, and has served as R&R Chair for Ethnic &
Multicultural Perspectives. She has appeared as guest clinician for the NC Women’s All-State Chorus in
addition to Guilford County All-County Choruses.

In 2010, Dr. Looker was appointed Artistic Director of the Piedmont Chamber Singers of Winston-Salem, a
position she held until 2015. A lyric soprano, Wendy has performed with the Bel Canto Company and has
sung with and directed the Greensboro-based early
music vocal ensemble, The Kensington Consort.
She also enjoys engaging with Greensboro
Symphony Orchestra audiences as a guest speaker
for the Prelude series of pre-concert lectures.

A native of Buffalo, New York, Looker holds the
Doctor of Music degree in Choral Conducting from
the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music,
where she studied with Jan Harrington, Carmen
Helena Téllez, Paul Hillier and John Poole. She
holds the Master of Music degree in Conducting
(choral emphasis) from the University of Michigan,
where she studied with Jerry Blackstone; and the
Bachelor of Arts degree in Vocal Performance
from the State University of New York College at
Geneseo. Wendy resides in Kernersville with her
husband, Jeremy Truhel, and their daughters,
Madeleine and Mina.

Dr. Looker will begin her new role on July 1. ■
Summer 2017 page 9

A Tr i b u t e t o We s t o n N o b l e
Jason Rausch, President, Iowa Choral Directors Association

S ince Weston Noble passed away on Wednesday, December 21, at the age of 94,
many have shared stories about the legacy of this musical giant. My experience
with Weston Noble is slightly different. I not only had the privilege of singing for him
at Luther College in the Nordic Choir, but I also spent the last nine-and-a-half years
living in the same community as he. In our community, I am the choral director at
Decorah High School and director of an adult community choir The Decorah Chorale.

Being a student of Mr. Noble’s was exciting. In choir, you were always ready for a question to be directed
your way. The questions he would ask were to help us engage our imaginations. “Why did the composer set
this in a triple meter?” “What color do you see in this passage?” “Why does the melody line go up here?” In
rehearsal, it was less often about the technique required to sing the piece and more about bringing out the
emotion. When calling on us in rehearsal he wouldn’t call us by name, but rather call on us by our hometown.
For you see, he spent hours and hours each year calling and writing hundreds of prospective high school
students. He first knew us as people from a certain town. It was easier for him, and it helped the choir learn
more about our fellow singers. It was common in rehearsal for Mr. Noble to choose a student to stand and sing
a phrase. He would even ask a quartet or octet to sing in
front of the choir and demonstrate phrasing. This gave the
other voices in the choir a chance to learn by listening. I
remember one November, as we were preparing Carl
Schalk’s “Before the Marvel Of This Night” for Juletide
Festival, he asked me to stand and sing the melody line the
men were learning to phrase. Even though I was a bass, I
was feeling confident singing the high F required.
However, as I sang the passage with Nordic Choir
listening my voice cracked on the high note. I was
embarrassed, but Mr. Noble ignored the voice crack and focused on making me feel good about the phrasing I
demonstrated. It was always his goal to make us feel good no matter what.

Mr. Noble’s love for choral music and the history of its development in the United States was joyfully shared
in choral conducting and choral methods courses. Weston had great respect for the traditions of Fred Waring,
John Finley Williamson and the Westminster Choir, the St. Olaf Choir and F. Melius Christiansen, and, his
hero, Robert Shaw. From these influential people, Weston had first-hand knowledge of their practices.
Hearing his first-hand accounts was a unique experience for us as students. In fact, talking about Robert Shaw
was almost a daily occurrence, as his influence on Mr. Noble was the most profound of all. This passion
taught us to respect the traditions that have come before us. From them, we learned to form our ideal choral
sound for which to aspire.

Being on choir tour with Weston Noble and Nordic Choir was like nothing else I have experienced. The
amount of respect Mr. Noble received as he walked onto stage at each concert was incredible—often standing

(cont’d on next page)
page 10 Carolina Caroler

ovations before we even sang a note. I sang with him during his forty-ninth and fiftieth years of teaching at
Luther, and his reputation preceded him greatly. We were so proud to be his choir and to be led by this
musical giant. Behind the scenes, Mr. Noble
could be quite silly, going along with our tour
shenanigans of daily awards given at our pre-
concert dinner. One of those awards was the
“Bus-head Award,” given to the person who
had the messiest hair after taking a nap on the
bus. One night Mr. Noble had the “honor” of
receiving this award. The award was a special
red plastic helmet he had to wear the next day
and later present with a song or skit that cajoled
the next recipient. He understood that the choir
experience was more than performing excellent
concerts. The bonding of the singers was very
important. It unified what we could achieve as a
performing unit, and it took us beyond the music and text on the page.

As I transitioned into my teaching career, Weston continued to mentor me. He often told me to go to graduate
school and keep learning. He was the best example of someone who was a life-long learner and wanted that to
be his students’ goal. You would often see
him taking notes at various ACDA
conferences, trying to better himself as a
teacher. After several years of teaching, I
went to graduate school. Following those
two years of graduate school, I landed in
Decorah, home of Luther College and
Weston Noble, teaching at the high school.
I remember the trepidation of having
Weston at my high school choral concerts
in my early years. However, I am not sure
why I was so nervous as he was always
complimentary and encouraging. He even
came and worked with one of my choirs a
few years later. During the clinic, my
students were starry-eyed and later told me
they understood why this man is special – it only took a forty-five minute rehearsal. During that clinic,
Weston stood next to me as I conducted the choir and would stop me and ask me questions such as, “Why did
I stop you?” “What should you have shown the choir with your gesture to make that line musical?” “Why are
you looking down at your music during the piano introduction? Connect eyes with the students.” I don’t think
he was there to work with the choir; I think he was there to work with me! The singers loved seeing me be the
one who was the student. We all had fun with it, but I was pretty exposed in front of the choir!

(cont’d on next page)
Summer 2017 page 11

Throughout his later years he continually preached vulnerability with your choir and this was a good example
of that.

Weston was a gentle soul, but when he wanted something he was insistent. I remember a few years ago he
called to apologize after he missed a concert at Decorah High School. He was upset that he must not have read
the newspaper closely enough to catch the press release. I had
to confess that I had forgotten to publicize the concert in the
local media. He let me know that he wanted to be there and that
I need to let the community know in the future. From then on I
made sure I did not make that mistake again!

Two weeks before Weston passed in December, he attended my
concert with the Decorah Chorale. He told me a week before
that he would be there, but on the night of our concert it was
snowing quite a bit. I feared Weston would try to come in the
questionable weather. Yes, indeed, as soon as I walked in I saw
him near the front of the church with a big smile on his face.
Following the concert, as was typical, he waited for me to come
see him at his seat so he could talk with me and give me a hug.
This time was extra special. It was almost as if he knew this would be the last concert of mine he would at-
tend. He gave me a very long embrace and had a few tears running down his face. Weston told me he was so
proud of me and that he led the standing ovation, something he said he rarely ever does. Our time ended with
another strong embrace. I will treasure this final moment for the rest of my life.

I will remember Weston Noble as the ultimate cheerleader for Luther College, his former students, the
Decorah community, and for me. Thank you, Weston, for impacting my life in ways I will never fully realize.
Your legacy lives on in the thousands of lives changed forever by your presence. ■

This article first appeared in Melisma, the journal of the North Central Division of the American Choral Directors Association,
David Puderbaugh, editor, and was reprinted by permission of Sounding Board.

Name That Excerpt!
Can you identify the title, movement, and composer of this major
work? Answer in the next issue.
page 12 Carolina Caroler

A Cappella and the Curriculum:
Points to Ponder
Stephen A. Futrell , NC ACDA Jazz Choirs R&R Chair

M any of us are struggling with the inclusion of more popular forms in the
overall choral program. The modern a cappella genre is not an exception. We
want to motivate students and do music that they like. Recruiting students can be
challenging, especially male singers. So, the inclusion of more popular music can have
an effect on our recruiting efforts. This brief article is intended simply to generate
thoughts and ideas about what a cappella can mean and what types of forms we can include in our curriculum
that speaks to our overall educational mission. And by no means is this a complete listing of possibilities.

It doesn’t take much to convince ourselves as professional musicians to justify the inclusion of more
cultivated repertoire (the lay-person would use the term “classical”). However, recall that many early, secular
forms were indeed “popular” music that wound up being studied and ultimately included in music history
textbooks. We all know that the Renaissance is rich with popular forms that were intended to be a cappella
and even if they were accompanied, could work
well unaccompanied. When we take into account When we take into account text painting
text painting and the development and the development of the programmatic
of the programmatic chanson, we can think about chanson, we can think about including
including madrigal, villancico and chanson that madrigal, villancico and chanson that have
have rhythmic interests, and sounds and orna- rhythmic interests, and sounds and ornaments
ments intended to imitate sounds in nature, or intended to imitate sounds in nature, or
designed to heighten the emotion of the text. designed to heighten the emotion of the text.
While we need to take care that we understand
the meaning of the text, as sometimes the subject matter could be inappropriate for younger singers, songs by
such composers as Morley, Marenzio, Encino, Monteverdi, Janequin, etc. offer a wealth and variety of oppor-
tunities to develop vocal strength, flexibility, and expression---and be “fun” at the same time.

I find it interesting that music historians have also included research on other secular, vernacular forms from
various cultures. Most of these are sometimes put in a larger category of folk song or work song. Many
cultures are rich with sea shanties, street cries, industrial worker songs, cowboy songs, lumberjack songs,
miner’s songs, etc. Many of these were originally sung a cappella and often-times have some sort of rhythmic
motive that can be exploited.

In our traditional choirs, we all most certainly program African-American spirituals. Why not explore the
development of those spirituals? Work songs/slave songs with their characteristic call & response and hollers
were the precursors to the development of the spirituals, the blues and gospel music, and no doubt had a huge
influence on the development of early jazz idioms. The gospel jubilee tradition with groups such as the Fiske
Jubilee Singers, the Golden Gate Quartet, the Jubilee Four are terrific examples of a cappella singing with a

(cont’d on next page)
Summer 2017 page 13

A C a p p e l l a a n d t h e C u r r i c u l u m : Po i n t s t o Po n d e r ( c o n t ’ d )

storytelling bent that included exploiting the rhythm of the text. Taking the trajectory on into the pop realm,
quartets such as the Mills Brothers and the Comedian Harmonists took to imitating horns and singing a
walking bass line. And speaking of imitating sounds and getting into improvisation, we can see a path from
singers like Louis Prima, to Ella, to Sarah, to Al Jarreau, and on to Bobby McFerrin. Barbershop is also
another great a cappella form that should be included in our overall programming.

We don’t have to focus on American popular forms in terms of a cappella singing. In South Africa, the
development of isicathamiya (Zulu) gave rise to a tradition that included male a cappella singing and dance.
One of the more modern examples of this mbube style can be seen with the vocal group Ladysmith Black

What we now see as “modern a cappella” actually has a history that can be traced back to a number of
different sources. Everything from storytelling, to musical substance, to fundamental vocal technique, to
development of expression, to arranging, composition and improvisation can be taught through a cappella
singing. However, we need not limit ourselves to simply doing lifts of the most current pop hits. The diversity
of repertoire from many cultures is the key to dynamic programming of more popular forms. ■

THE MISSION of the American Choral Directors
Association is to inspire excellence in choral
music through education, performance,
composition, and advocacy.
page 14 Carolina Caroler
Summer 2017 page 15

W h e n Yo u ’ r e t h e Yo u n g e s t i n t h e
Room: Preparing for Success with
Yo u r A d u l t C h u r c h C h o i r
Aaron R. Jackson, NC ACDA Music in Worship R&R Chair

I n February 2002, I took my first position as a Minister of Music. It was a part-time
position and I was a 19-year old sophomore working to complete my undergraduate
degree. I was full of energy, enthusiasm, and excitement! I had worked with adult choirs
prior to this position, but only as an accompanist, never as the conductor. I found myself on that chilly
Sunday afternoon choir rehearsal, sitting at a keyboard (because as I had learned, there was no accompanist),
in front of 13 adults. I was the youngest in the room. With a lot of fear and a little courage, I embarked on a
life-long journey, working with the adult church choir and sharing the joy of music.

Perhaps you have found yourself in a similar situation and have pondered the same daunting question that I
did that Sunday afternoon: “How can I achieve success with the
adult choir?” This article will offer tips for young church choir Adults want to work in a
conductors and helpful reminders for seasoned Ministers of professional environment with
Music. Some ideas suggested will work in your given context, professional people; they want
some will not; some might work now, and some later. Customize their time to be productive; they
this information for your given setting. want to achieve a level of profi-
ciency and improve their ability
This past Spring, I conducted an informal survey with a total of throughout the experience.
40 adult church choir members. The survey included the
following three questions:

▪ What do you expect from the conductor and the rehearsal?
▪ What do you desire from the conductor and the rehearsal?
▪ What do you appreciate about the conductor and the rehearsal?

The following definitions were provided for respondents:

▪ Expect: something I think or know should happen, whether I like it or not.
▪ Desire: the wants or thoughts that I project onto a given situation.
▪ Appreciate: recognizing the full importance, work, or implication; to be grateful, thankful.

The responses to the survey overwhelmingly indicated that adults expect, desire, and appreciate
professionalism, productivity, and proficiency. Adults want to work in a professional environment with
professional people; they want their time to be productive; they want to achieve a level of proficiency and
improve their ability throughout the experience. Professionalism is you-based; it’s about who you are and who
you are becoming; Productivity and proficiency are the elements of what and how.

ProTip #1: The adult choir conductor is a professional. Numerous responses from the survey either

(cont’d on next page)
page 16 Carolina Caroler

explicitly or implicitly indicated that adults want to work in a professional setting with professional
individuals. The following characteristics given in the survey responses, describe the aspects of

▪ Preparation is paramount to becoming the consummate professional.

▪ Prepare yourself physically, musically, educationally; become a life-long learner.
▪ Prepare the music you will rehearse and perform.
▪ Repertoire selection should be appropriate for both ensemble and context.
▪ Do your homework: score study is your responsibility.
▪ Prepare the rehearsal.
▪ Have a plan/goal for each rehearsal. Do not “wing it;” it is obvious and amateur. And at the same time, let the
rehearsal be organic. Give yourself permission to deviate from the plan, when necessary.
▪ Prepare the space.
▪ The rehearsal space should emanate a professional environment. For many adults, the rehearsal room is the
only organized, well-maintained space they encounter throughout the week. The professionalism of this area
will lead to serious, productive, and engaging music making.

▪ Inspiration: Adults will rarely sacrifice their time, energy, and efforts for mediocrity. They look
and respond to passion and knowledge.

▪ Awareness: “When we trust, we invite; when we fear, we control.” The professional conductor is
aware of his ensemble, audience, and perhaps most
importantly, she/he is aware of themselves. They
build trust with their ensemble. They receive When we trust, we invite; when
feedback without defensiveness. They hear we fear, we control.
suggestions and consider ideas from choristers
because while they may be the most knowledgeable
about music, they might not know the most about life. Be aware of yourself, consider your own
vulnerability, and trust your ensemble enough to share their feedback and to share your life with

▪ Patience: Offer constructive criticism in a positive, non-demeaning fashion.

▪ Organization and Communication: most musicians appreciate a well-organized plan that is
communicated thoroughly and in advance.

▪ Balance: The survey indicated that while adults expected planning, intensive knowledge of
▪ music, high expectations, and to learn better vocal skills, they repeatedly mentioned their desire for
the conductor to have a good sense of humor and the rehearsals be fun. As adult choir conductors,
we live and work in this tension. Balance is important.

ProTip #2: The adult choir conductor and rehearsals need to be productive. Adults want to be productive,

(cont’d on next page)
Summer 2017 page 17

not wasteful with their time and resources. The research indicated that adults want to feel like their time is
valuable and used to achieve a common goal, whether small or large. The following are some principles of
productivity, specifically stated in survey responses:

▪ Start and End on Time: This response spanned all categories of expect, desire and appreciate. It
was a top directive. Helpful ways to achieve this goal include:

▪ Give the rehearsal order in some fashion.
▪ Provide score markings which enable us to talk less and sing more: Remember, the ensemble came to make
music, not to hear time consuming anecdotes (although when properly placed and used sparingly, can be very
effective tools of communication).

▪ Pace the Rehearsal: Vary the time spent on difficult portions of literature with music that offers
successful results in a shorter amount of time. Consider incorporating physical movement to
enhance the overall rehearsal pace.

▪ Economy of Gesture: Use the conducting gesture to communicate as much information as
possible. Refrain from gestures that are vague, repetitive, or non-communicative.

▪ Sectional Rehearsals and Section Leaders: These tools build sectional and individual
independence, ensemble morale and offer leadership opportunities within the ensemble.

▪ Accompanist: A good accompanist is a
second listener in rehearsals and
collaborative artist in performances. Their
Adults want to
feedback during and after rehearsals can become proficient at
greatly improve overall productivity and
progress through the process. their craft.
▪ Online Resources: Recordings,
informational tools, communication, and dissemination of information are all options available in
online formats. Use these tools to increase efficiency and productivity.

ProTip #3: Adults want to become proficient at their craft. As we strive to be the best musicians and
conductors, adult choristers also have a strong desire to build skill and technique. One of the respondents
clearly articulated the adult chorister goal of proficiency: “I want to learn something new at each rehearsal
and leave a better musician than when I arrived.” Part of our job as adult choir conductors is to help singers
strengthen their vocal instrument. Consider the following suggestions to help build proficiency:

▪ Articulate Basic Concepts: In recognizable language, communicate and connect a given
concept to the adult learner who may be a musical novice. Basic choral concepts include:

(cont’d on next page)
page 18 Carolina Caroler

▪ Posture
▪ Breath
▪ Balanced phonation
▪ Diction

Phrase shape and direction
Consider using voice
▪ Basic elements of music theory stacking techniques.
▪ The Warm-Up: Energize the Body, the Mind,
and Connect to the Literature

▪ Physical Movement
▪ Breathing mechanism
▪ Resonators/Articulators with a focus on vowel shape and placement
▪ Ear training and tuning
▪ Range exploration

▪ The Process: Create an Atmosphere of Suc-
cess Consider strategic

Consider using voice stacking techniques placement of
various voice colors
Identify the most difficult voice part in each

and strengths.
Let that part sing the given passage once alone
▪ Add one additional voice part on the same pas-
sage until all voices are singing. By this point,
the most
▪ difficult part will have sung the line at least four
▪ Identify and work similar sections first.
▪ Consider working backwards, from the end of a piece to its beginning.

▪ Voicing and Placement: Macro and micro decisions on singer placement can augment
▪ confidence and proficiency.

▪ Consider strategic placement of various voice colors and strengths.
▪ Develop an aural concept that will determine where overall voice parts are placed. This may change based on
a given performance or song.

▪ Additional Rehearsal Techniques: The following are tried and true rehearsal techniques that
have been used successfully and propagated by choral giants:

▪ Singing on neutral syllable or alternating with text (one voice part on neutral, one on text)
▪ Staccato singing
▪ Count singing
▪ Solfège
▪ A cappella singing
▪ Adjusting/freezing the tempo

(cont’d on next page)
Summer 2017 page 19

Implementing the concepts and suggestions of professionalism, productivity and proficiency will help both
the church adult choir conductor and the adult choristers achieve a great deal of success. Furthermore, by
practicing these principles, both parties will ultimately find tremendous satisfaction in making music together
throughout their journey.

The following are additional resources for repertoire, vocal pedagogy, conducting, and leadership.

Repertoire Resources
▪ Choral Public Domain Library ( ▪ Translations and Annotations of Choral Repertoire, Jeffers
▪ Choral Repertoire, Shrock ▪ Choral Journal (publication of American Choral Directors
▪ Choral Masterworks, Steinberg Association)
▪ Catalogue of Choral Music Arranged in Biblical Order, ▪ JW Pepper, Beckenhorst, MorningStar/ECS Publishing,
Laster Choristers Guild

Vocal Pedagogy Resources Leadership Resources
▪ The Structure of Singing, Richard Miller ▪ The One Minute Manager, Blanchard/Johnson
▪ The Diagnosis and Correction of Vocal Faults, McKinney ▪ How to Talk So People Will Listen, Brown
▪ The Functional Unity of the Singing Voice, Doscher ▪ Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, Covey
▪ Choral Pedagogy, Smith/Sataloff ▪
▪ Prescriptions for Choral Excellence, Emmons/Chase
▪ Your Voice: An Inside View, McCoy Other Online Resources
▪ Dynamics of the Singing Voice, Dayme ▪ IPA (International Phonetic Library)
▪ (German)
Conducting Resources ▪ (IPA Transcripts)
▪ Physical Expression and the Performing Artist, Schwiebert ▪ YouTube, Vimeo
▪ Choral Concepts, Neuen ▪
▪ The Choral Warm-up Collection, Various/Albrecht ▪ IJRCS (International Journal of Research in Choral Singing)
▪ Building Choral Excellence, Demorest ▪ ■
▪ The Choral Experience, Robinson/Winold
▪ On Becoming A Conductor, Battisti
▪ Handbook of Conducting, Scherchen
▪ Score Reading, Dickreiter
▪ Directing the Choral Music Program, Phillips
▪ Beyond the Baton, Wittry

ACDA Partners
with North Carolina!

Welcome Collegiate ACDA members!
NC ACDA is proud to co-sponsor
23 collegiate members
through a partnership with the national office!
page 20 Carolina Caroler

Newsletter Update

N C ACDA wishes sincerely and gratefully to thank Dr. Nathan Leaf,
Director of Choral Activities at North Carolina State University for giving his
time and talent toward the preparation and publication of the Carolina Caroler for
the past four years. On behalf of all of NC ACDA, thank you, Dr. Leaf, for your
outstanding work and dedication to the choral art!

NC ACDA would also like to welcome Dr. Carl Ashley as our new Newsletter
Editor! Carl has served as the Director of Choral Activities and Assistant Professor
of Music at the University of Mount Olive for the past four years, where he conducted
the Concert and Chamber Choirs and taught courses in the voice curriculum, church
music, and music education. He recently accepted an appointment as Minister of
Music at First Baptist
Church in Goldsboro.
He holds a BMME from
the University of
Florida, an MM from
Westminster Choir
College, and a DMA in
choral conducting from
the University of Miami,
where he studied with Dr. Jo-Michael Scheibe.
His choruses have consistently received the highest ratings at district and state MPAs, have won or placed in
numerous national choral festivals, and have performed at Carnegie Hall on several occasions. He continues
to be in demand as a conductor, composer/arranger, clinician, and adjudicator. He conducts Goldsboro’s
premier community choir, the III Century Singers, and his choral music is published by National Music, Colla
Voce, and Walton.
Carl is the founder
of, a
ministry dedicated
to the composition
of contemporary
hymnody. He and
his wife Marie, a
voice teacher and
opera singer, live in
Mount Olive with
their six-year-old
son, Ian. ■
Summer 2017 page 21
page 22 Carolina Caroler

NC ACDA is pleased to announce an exciting choral experience
for North Carolina’s developing musicians:

North Carolina Sings!
A Workshop for Developing Voices
With guest clinicians
Dr. Tucker Biddlecombe Mary Biddlecombe
of Vanderbilt University of Blair Children’s Choruses

Mixed Choir Conductor Treble Choir Conductor
(Grades 8-12) (Grades 3-7)

In conjunction with the 2017 NC ACDA Fall Conference
October 7, 2017 in Raleigh
ACDA Members may sponsor young men and young women in grades 3-7 for the Treble Choir and grades
8-12 for the Mixed Choir to participate in this one-day choral skill-building workshop. This event provides an
opportunity for young singers from school, religious, and community choirs to make music in a positive
environment designed to encourage enthusiasm for choral singing.

Advance preparation is NOT REQUIRED! During check-in on October 7, each singer will receive a choral
packet designed for use during the workshop and included in the registration fee of $25 per singer.

Register by July 15, 2017 to reserve spaces for a maximum of eight singers in each ensemble. Singer
allotments may increase as space allows, and additional singers will be added after August 1, 2017 on a
first-come, first-served basis.
Summer 2017 page 23

North Carolina Sings! A Workshop for Developing Voices
October 7, 2017
Requirements for singer eligibility and registration guidelines:

▪ Singers must be recommended for participation by their choral conductor, an active member of ACDA, who will
register for and attend the NC ACDA Fall Conference.
▪ Singers must be in grades seven through twelve.
▪ Initially, conductors may register a maximum of eight (8) singers per choir. Conductors with multiple profession
appointments (e.g. a church choir and a school choir) are encouraged to register singers from more than one choir.
▪ Singer allotments may increase as space allows, and additional singers will be added after August 1, 2017 on a first-
come, first-served basis.
▪ Individuals must be selected to fill the singer allotment and registered by name via email by September 6, 2017.
▪ Return completed application form and registration fee of $25 per singer by July 15, 2017 to:

Patrick Schell
2680 Alderney Lane
Winston-Salem, NC 27103

Please print or type
Which choir will you be participating in? (Please place a check mark)

__________ Mixed Choir __________ Treble Choir __________ Both

Sponsoring ACDA Member: _________________________________________________________

Member Email: ____________________________________________________________________

Preferred Phone Number: ___________________________________________________________

Ensemble Name: ___________________________________________________________________

Type of Choir: □ School □ Community □ Religious Institution

Members wishing to send singers from multiple choir types should complete a separate registration form for each choir.

Ensemble Address: _________________________________________________________________

City: ________________________________________ Zip Code: __________________________

Total number of spaces you wish to reserve (8 maximum per choir)

__________ Mixed Choir __________ Treble Choir

Would you be interested in additional spots if they become available? _____ Yes _____ No
page 24 Carolina Caroler
Summer 2017 page 25

See pp. 22-23 for more information.

Editor’s Note The Carolina Caroler is the official newsletter of the North Carolina Chap-
Carl Ashley, Newsletter Editor ter of the American Choral Directors Association. Articles and advertisements
may be submitted to: Carl Ashley at Articles may
What a joy and be submitted via email as Word documents. Times New Roman, or similar,
a privilege it is with font size 12 preferred. Please do not double space after punctuations
to serve you as (periods)—a practice held back in the days of typewriters—it is not necessary
the new with word processing.
Newsletter Issue Deadline Publication
Editor for NC Fall June 15 July 15
ACDA. I Spring Dec. 15 Jan. 15
encourage you Summer April 15 May 15
to send your NC ACDA reserves the right to edit any application for appearance and to edit
ideas, articles, all materials proposed for distribution.
and photos for
inclusion in Advertising Rates
subsequent The Carolina Caroler will accept advertising at the following rates:
publications to Full page: $150.00 (approx. 7.5” x 10”) The Half page: $100.00 (approx. 7.5” x 4.5”)
deadlines for advertising listed at right Quarter page: $50.00 (approx. 3.75” x 4.5”)
are applicable. Discounts are available on multiple ads of the same design. Rates listed are for
digital .jpg or .pdf files. A check made payable to “North Carolina ACDA”
I am looking forward to working and must accompany the order. Invoices sent upon request. Copy will not run with-
serving with you as we continue to out advance payment. Advertising copy is subject to editorial approval. The
editor reserves the right to head and/or box any advertisement bearing confus-
promote the choral art in our schools, ing resemblance to editorial material.
our churches, and our communities!