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Interest Session 1

Friday, August 4, 10:00-11:00 am
Improvisation in the Choral Rehearsal – Joy Hirokawa
This experiential session will present strategies to introduce vocal improvisation to your ensemble in a comfortable and non-threatening way. The focus will be on exploring the expressive musician in all of us and will not be jazz specific.
Dr. Joy Hirokawa is Assistant Professor of Music Education at Moravian College (Bethlehem, PA) and the Founder and Artistic Director of The Bel Canto Children’s Chorus of the Bach Choir of Bethlehem. Under her direction, the choir has appeared on ACDA, NAfME, and PMEA conferences, and has traveled internationally. Dr. Hirokawa is a frequent guest conductor and clinician, presenting regularly at ACDA, NAfME and PMEA conferences and conducting numerous honor choirs nationally. Her published arrangements include her jazz arrangement of “Lullaby of Birdland,” recently included in Voices in Concert, the new choral text published by McGraw-Hill and Hal Leonard, and “My Favorite Things,” featured on numerous honor choir programs. Her newest jazz arrangement for young voices is “Accentuate the Positive,” available from Hal Leonard.  She is the current ACDA Eastern Division Repertoire and Resources Chair for Children and Youth.  Dr. Hirokawa taught in the public schools for 20 years prior to her appointment at Moravian College.
Music for the Mind: Repertoire to Awaken Our Singers’ Creativity – Chris McGinley
One of the great joys of our profession is interpreting the score, unlocking the mysteries contained within and sharing them with our choirs and audiences. The repertoire in this session invites our singers into that creative process by requiring that they make decisions about pitch, rhythm, and even voicing and form. Materials will be targeted to middle school, high school, and collegiate/community levels and span from the renaissance to the avant-garde, including: puzzle canons (which must be solved by riddle and experimentation), aleatoric and graphic scores to inspire the sonic imagination, and speaking/text-based pieces to reinforce text stress and expressive communication. Emphasis will be placed on pieces which work on the concert stage as well as in the choral classroom.
Tackling Performance Tours with the Older Choir: The joys and challenges of traveling with the slightly gray, the little bit infirmed, and the sometimes grumpy – Patricia Guth
In this session, participants will learn the particulars of crafting an enjoyable AND manageable tour for the choir with an average age of 50 or more years-old. Discussion is geared towards both musical directors and board members and topics include:
·      Interviewing tour companies
·      Selecting a suitable destination
·      Itineraries
·      Suitable daily activity schedules while traveling
·      Concert times and venues
·      Choosing ideal hotels
·      Meal options
·      Planning “special” activities for older singers
·      Identifying local outreach opportunities for older singers
·      Touring as a way to attract and retain singers
Patricia Guth, founder and artistic director of the Bucks County Women’s Chorus, loves gushing over and bragging about the 90 women she directs each Monday evening, and adores her choirs at the Lutheran Church of God’s Love in Newtown, PA, too. A graduate of Westminster Choir College with a degree in music education, Pat is a devoted alumna of that institution, is currently a member of the Coalition to Save Westminster, and was the 2012 recipient of the college’s Alumni Merit Award. A former elementary school music teacher and a church musician for 40 years, she enjoys teaching her choirs about the potential they possess to touch other’s lives with their singing, no matter their age or experience. A clinician on the topic of community choirs and a frequent guest on the Choir Ninja podcast, Pat also works as a freelance writer and has published countless articles and blogs as well as two children's travel-related books. She also enjoys cooking, reads incessantly, loves TV medical shows, and would travel full-time with her husband if they were filthy rich! 
Vocal Pedagogy in the Choral Classroom – Kyle Weary
It seems that more often in todays schools, choir classes are nothing than mere note-pounding “sessions” to learn the music for the next concert.  This works well if students already a knowledge of the vocal mechanism, but most often students do not have the knowledge of proper vocal technique.  In this session, participants will receive suggestions and ideas on how to add vocal development into the choral rehearsal without interrupting the music process.
A 2018 Quarterfinalist for the Grammy Music Educator Award, Kyle J. Weary is recognized as a leader in teaching music literacy and contemporary commercial music. Kyle has been invited to present educational sessions in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and Texas. Kyle’s articles on teaching music literacy and vocal pedagogy in the choral rehearsal have appeared in Choral Director Magazine. Kyle was nominated for 2015 Washington County’s Teacher of the Year and was selected as a quarterfinalist for the 2016 GRAMMY music educator award. Kyle is the Director of Choirs of the at Barbara Ingram School for the Arts where he conducts two choirs and is Music Director for the Spring Musical. He also serves as Director of Music at Silver Spring Presbyterian Church. Previously, Kyle taught piano and voice privately and served on the faculty at Shepherd University.  As guest conductor, Kyle has conducted honor choirs in Prince George’s County (MD), Allegany County (MD) Washington County (MD), Vermont (ACDA), and with The Maryland Symphony Orchestra.
The Barbara Ingram Choral ensemble had their first Carnegie Hall appearance in 2010. Kyle's students have been selected as members for Maryland All State Junior and Senior choirs, All Eastern Choir, and All National Choir.  Kyle's choral ensembles are consistently rated superior at District and State choral festivals. 
Kyle earned a Bachelor of Music Education and Master of Music in Conducting from Shenandoah Conservatory of Music.  Kyle is also a graduate of the Contemporary Commercial Music Vocal Pedagogy Institute.