Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Sets 2016-17 Season

The Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus celebrates its 25th anniversary during the 2016-17 season.

The Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus was founded in 1991 to raise awareness of choral music-making in the schools of northeastern Ohio and to encourage more students to continue their choral activities through college and into adulthood. The Youth Chorus comprises approximately 100 members in grades 9 to 12, representing some 40 schools and communities. Like their colleagues in the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra, they are chosen through competitive auditions.

The Youth Chorus, directed by Lisa Wong, presents an average of five concerts each season and collaborates with other musical ensembles such as The Cleveland Orchestra and the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra. In addition to performances at Severance Hall, their activities include concerts and community engagement programs in the greater Cleveland area. For the past 25 consecutive years, the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra has been supported by the Edward and Ruth Wilkof Foundation.

Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Director Lisa Wong commented, "I am particularly excited about the upcoming season with the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus, as we celebrate our 25th year as part of The Cleveland Orchestra family. We are extraordinarily fortunate to be performing in three programs with The Cleveland Orchestra this season, including It's a Wonderful Life in December, Breakfast at Tiffany's on Valentine's Day, and A Midsummer Night's Dream conducted by Franz Welser-Möst in May. Other highlights include our annual collaboration with the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra, as well as a choral clinic with award-winning American composer Jake Runestad."

The group also presents an independent holiday concert each winter and performs at Severance Hall's annual Martin Luther King Jr. Community Open House. The complete schedule can be found at clevelandorchestra.com.

Youth Chorus Open Rehearsal - October 16, 2016

The Youth Chorus will host an open rehearsal for high school singers who would like to participate in a working rehearsal. The Open Rehearsal will take place at Fairmount Temple in Beachwood on Sunday, October 16, 2016 from 1:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Interested singers will join a full Youth Chorus rehearsal alongside current chorus members to get a first-hand look at what it's like to be in the chorus. Participants will receive a special invitation to audition and join the chorus mid-season. For questions or to reserve a spot, email jweiner@clevelandorchestra.com.

Honor Choir Nominations - March 25 and 26, 2017

For the second year, an honor choir will be assembled for a one-time performance on March 26, 2017 at 7:00 p.m. at Severance Hall. All school choir directors in Northeast Ohio are invited to nominate their top eight students. At least one student from each school will be chosen by the Youth Chorus director. Selected students will attend an all-day clinic on March 25 with guest clinician Tesfa Wondemagegnhu, who has conducted workshops and honor choirs across the United States, Canada, Germany, Austria, Hungary, and Costa Rica. For more information, email chorus@clevelandorchestra.com.

Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Former Directors
The Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus has been led by Gareth Morell (1991-98), Betsy Burleigh (1998-2006), Frank Bianchi (2006-12), and Lisa Wong (from 2012). The ensemble has been widely praised as one of the top high-school-aged choral performing ensembles in the state of Ohio.

Ongoing support for the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus is provided by the Edward and Ruth Wilkof Foundation, which has supported the group since it was founded in 1991. Additional initial funding was provided by the W.O. Frohring Foundation and the Sears Family Foundation.

Lisa Wong, Director

A strong advocate for music education, Lisa Wong is active as a clinician, guest conductor, and adjudicator. She serves as a Music Panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts and works as an adjudicator for Festivals of Music. She has presented her work at several music conferences and is frequently invited to work with students and educators in clinics and workshops. In 2013, she was invited to Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya as a part of Tunaweza Kimuziki, and in 2015 was selected as a conductor for Conducting 21C: Musical Leadership for a New Century in Stockholm, Sweden. Choirs under Ms. Wong's direction have performed for the Central Division conference of the American Choral Directors Association, and at state conferences of the National Association for Music Education.

Ms. Wong has worked with students of all levels, ranging from pre-kindergarten through college. In addition to serving as Assistant Director of Choruses of The Cleveland Orchestra, she is an Associate Professor of Music at The College of Wooster, where she conducts the Wooster Chorus, the Wooster Singers, and teaches courses in conducting, choral literature, and music education. Prior to her appointment in Wooster, she taught for sixteen years in public and private schools in New York, Pennsylvania, and Indiana. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from West Chester University, and Master of Music and Doctor of Music degrees in Choral Conducting from Indiana University's Jacobs School of Music.

Daniel Singer, Assistant Director

Daniel Singer joined the choral conducting staff of The Cleveland Orchestra in 2012 as Assistant Director of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus. Since 2011, he has served as Director of Music at University School in Hunting Valley, Ohio, where he conducts the orchestra and chorus. Mr. Singer is active as a guest conductor and clinician, having worked with honor choirs and top student ensembles in Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, and North Carolina. Mr. Singer performs professionally with Quire Cleveland and has sung as baritone soloist with ensembles throughout the region, including the Wooster Symphony Orchestra and Chorus, Choral Arts Cleveland, and the Suburban Symphony of Cleveland. He is also an arranger and composer, having written for choral and instrumental groups throughout the United States.

From 2003 to 2009 Mr. Singer worked as a performer, music director, and teacher in the Chicago area. Mr. Singer taught high school choral music in the cities of Lincolnshire and Cary and participated in music engagement in the Chicago Public Schools. Mr. Singer holds a bachelor of music degree summa cum laude in Choral and Instrumental Music Education from Northwestern University and a master of music degree in Choral Conducting from Michigan State University.

Additional information about the Youth Chorus can be found at the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus website.

Youth Chorus Eligibility and Auditions

All students in grades 9-12 are eligible to audition for the Youth Chorus, as are 8th-grade boys with changed voices. Participation requires a nominal tuition fee, plus the cost of concert attire, however scholarships are available for those in need. Youth Chorus rehearsals are held on Sunday afternoons from September through mid-May.

Auditions for the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus are held each spring, with special audition opportunities throughout the season. For audition dates and requirements, call the Chorus office at 216-231-7374, send an email to chorus@clevelandorchestra.com or click here for the most current audition information.


2016-17 Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Concert Schedule

Saturday, November 19, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Holiday Concert
with the Cleveland Orchestra Children's Preparatory Chorus
Rocky River Presbyterian Church
21750 Detroit Road
Rocky River, Ohio
This is a free event.

Thursday, December 8, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, December 9, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
At the Movies - It's a Wonderful Life

The Cleveland Orchestra
Brett Mitchell, conductor
Severance Hall
This is a ticketed event.
click here to buy tickets

Sunday, December 11, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, December 15, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.*
Sunday, December 18, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.*
Christmas Concerts with The Cleveland Orchestra
The Cleveland Orchestra
Brett Mitchell, conductor
Cleveland Orchestra Chorus

Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Chamber Ensemble
*Featuring preconcert performances by the Chamber Ensemble, conducted by Lisa Wong.
Severance Hall
Christmas Concert ticket required.
click here to buy tickets

Monday, January 16, 2017 at 12:15 p.m.
Martin Luther King Community Open House
Lisa Wong, conductor
Severance Hall
This is a free event.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
At the Movies - Breakfast at Tiffany's
The Cleveland Orchestra
Justin Freer, conductor
Severance Hall
This is a ticketed event.
click here to buy tickets

Sunday, February 19, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.
Joint Concert with the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra
Brett Mitchell, conductor
BATES - Sea-Blue Circuitry
DEBUSSY - Nocturnes
POULENC - Gloria
Featuring pre-concert performances by the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Chamber Ensemble and chamber ensembles of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Orchestra.
Severance Hall
This is a ticketed event.
click here to buy tickets

Sunday, March 26, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.
Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Honor Choir Concert
Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus Honor Choir
Tesfa Wondemagegnehu, conductor
Severance Hall
This is a free event.

Thursday, May 11, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, May 13, 2017 at 8:00 p.m.
Sunday, May 14, 2017 at 3:00 p.m.

A Midsummer Night's Dream
The Cleveland Orchestra
Franz Welser-Möst, conductor
Julia Fischer, violin
Itay Tiran, actor
Anya Matanovic, soprano
Emily Fons, mezzo-soprano
Ladies of the Cleveland Orchestra Youth Chorus
HENZE - Il Vitalino raddoppiato
MENDELSSOHN - Incidental Music to A Midsummer Night's Dream
Severance Hall
This is a ticketed event.
click here to buy tickets



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