Chamber Singers to Florida
by Jeffrey Carter
Webster University Chamber Singers are off to Florida this week on a seven-day tour that includes concerts, school visits, and two more gigs with Josh Groban on his Central Florida tour.
Chamber Singers, the University’s flagship choral ensemble, performed with Groban a few months ago in Saint Louis. Dr. Trent Patterson, Director of Choral Studies, explains that “Groban’s team knew we were coming to Florida, and offered us additional dates after things went so well in Saint Louis. We are delighted to be joining Josh again as he promotes his latest album.”
The tour is the third annual swing for the choir. Patterson has strong ties to Central Florida after teaching at Winter Park High School, and he continues to recruit powerful talent from the Sunshine State, including in Fall 2016 a full-tuition scholarship recipient majoring in choral music education.
“Our music program has many strengths and quite a few things that set us apart,” said department chair Jeffrey Carter. “The choral music education program continues to grow in both number of students, and in real-world curriculum. It’s no wonder that we are seen as one of the go-to programs in the Midwest.” A sign of the strength of the program: three of Webster’s current full-tuition Presidential Scholarship recipients are majoring in choral music education, including students from Florida, Chicagoland, and the Metro East area of Saint Louis.
The Florida tour commences on Tuesday, March 1. Over the next six days the students share numerous high school visits, perform with Groban, visit Disneyworld, and close with a public concert in Orlando on Sunday, March 6.
Previous tours stopped in Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois, and Tennessee–all part of a push to ‘go national’ with the Webster music brand and story. Stuart Chapman Hill joins the Webster faculty in August 2016 as a new member of the music education faculty . . . and the 7th new faculty member in the Department of Music in the last eight years!
A significant number of Chamber Singers participants study vocal arts at Webster, and were coached this month by renowned American soprano Christine Brewer during her week-long annual residency.
In 2015, Chamber Singers were selected to perform a new work during the reopening of the Pulitzer art museum in Saint Louis. They also were named semifinalist in the college/university chorus division of The American Prize, a national non-profit multi-category competition in the performing arts.
The previous year, Chamber Singers were one of only five college choirs selected to perform during the main session concert at the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) biennial divisional conference.
More Chamber Singers details are posted on the Webster University news page.