ChoralFest ’14

Hello followers of JMU ACDA, and esteemed High School Colleagues!

It is our pleasure to announce that the 14th annual JMU ACDA High School ChoralFest 2014 will be hosted here at JMU in the Forbes Center for the Performing Arts from September 19 – 20, 2014, with guest clinician Christopher Aspaas.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the annual JMU ACDA ChoralFest, it is a 2-day festival in September where students participate side-by-side with members of the award-winning JMU Chorale in rehearsals, sectionals, activities, and the culminating performance on Saturday afternoon conducted by the guest clinician.  Previous guest clinicians include Drs. Jo-Anne van der Vat-Chromy, Karen Kennedy, Jerry Blackstone, Sandra Snow, Patrick Walders, Weston Noble, Andre Thomas, and Maria Guinand.

As some of you may recall, the Forbes Center boasts a 600-seat Concert Hall, 200-seat Recital Hall, 500-seat proscenium theatre & opera house, 33 new practice rooms, technology lab, faculty offices, and more. It is a phenomenal space, and we are excited to have it as our home base for the Festival!

We are excited to welcome Dr. Christopher Aspaas from Minnesota as our guest clinician this year. Christopher Aspaas serves as the Assistant Professor of Music, Voice and Choral Conducting,Conductor of Chapel Choir and Viking Chorus, St. Olaf College, Minnesota. Aspaas is also active as a tenor soloist, performing Bach cantatas with Helmuth Rilling and the Oregon Bach Festival Orchestra. Read more about Christopher here: Dr. Aspaas

Please note that Dr. Aspass has picked exciting and challenging repertoire for this festival, including pieces of foreign language.  We are lucky to be working with an expert in choral conducting, and it goes without saying that fantastic preparation is a must for this event!

Please note as well that performance space is limited. Schools that are FIRST to register online and send their deposit will be given preference. More details on this are included in the form itself.

Below are the necessary links and forms your school needs in order to participate. To accelerate the application process, our intent to participate form is online. Below is also the link to Musical Source where the Repertoire Packets are being made available.

This is the list of repertoire for the festival, which should be available on the musical source website soon:

Attached Sample Schedule

Attached Informational Flyer


In closing, on behalf of our JMU Choral Faculty, Director of Choral Activities Dr. Jo-Anne van der Vat-Chromy, Choral Music Professor Dr. Bryce Hayes, and the entire JMU Choral Area, thank you for your continued interest in ChoralFest!  We hope to hear from you soon, and look forward to welcoming you to campus in September! Please do not hesitate to contact us with any questions or concerns (

Best wishes,

JMU ACDA Executive Board,

Aaron Todd, President; Emmie Dohse, Vice-President; Caroline Morse, Treasurer; Annemarie Cartwright, Secretary; Melanie Robison, Historian & Publicity

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