Mesa chapter recruits new chorus director with help from music educator resources
Great musical leadership lies at the heart of successful barbershop singing communities, but locating and engaging the right chorus director isn’t always easy.
Terry Morrison of the East Valley Barbershop Harmonizers in Mesa, Arizona did it the old-fashioned way: he went where the musicians are located, and asked questions. Browsing the website of the Arizona American Choral Directors Association, Terry spotted a free listing of choirs and choruses in the states. When adding East Valley to the list, he entered “open” under the Director column.
Matthew Frable, who maintained the ACDA site, was intrigued. Emailing Terry, he received the job description and applied for the gig. Matthew brings 35 years of experience directing theater groups, choir festivals, and conducting both small vocal ensembles and large community choruses — but barbershop offered a new opportunity. After a few rehearsals and an audition, the chorus gave a “thumbs up,” a contract was signed, and their journey together began.
Lesson: eyes open! Talented choral musicians may be more common than you know, if you’re willing to look outside your existing barbershop communities.