The UW Chamber Singers (Geoffrey Boers, director), and the University Chorale (Giselle Wyers, director) present their year-end performance. Chamber Singers performs four works by choir members Sarah Riskind, Frederick Mansfield, Frederick Mabalot, and Steve Danielson. University Chorale performs works by UW faculty and student choral composers and a special set of Bulgarian choral works coached by visiting Fulbright Scholar Ana Ganeva (who is at the UW working with UW Music Ed professor Patricia Campbell). Dr. Ganeva, who serves on the music faculty at St. Cyril & Methodius University of Velika Tarnovo, Bulgaria, is a former member of the touring ensemble Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares.
UW CHAMBER SINGERS
Geoffrey Boers, conductor
Regnum Dei Intra Vos Est, Alleluia! (2014) ..................................Frederick Bayani Mabalot (b. 1977)
By the Waters of Babylon (2012) ......................................Sarah Riskind (b. 1987)
Abbie Naze, cello
Sarah Riskind, conductor
Elahi (2017) ...............................................................................................Fredrik Mansfield
Joel Bevington, conductor
From the Ashes ........................................................Steve Danielson (b. 1977)
Jennifer Rodgers, conductor
Healing Heart (2012) ..................................................... Eric Barnum (b. 1979)
Alleluia (2014) ......................................................... Jake Runestad (b. 1986)
Giselle Wyers, director
Three Bulgarian choral works: (Two folk songs and the classical choral work “Hubava si moya goro” )
Ana Ganeva, vocal coach
Giselle Wyers: “Sometimes I Choose a Cloud,” “Song is the Infinite Time,” and two movements from “And All Shall Be Well”
Jake Runestad: "Live the Questions" (set to text by Rainier Maria Rilke)
Sarah Riskind: "Oseh Shalom"
Elisabeth Cherland, conductor
Steve Danielson: "Take Me Back"
Stacey Gibbs, arranger: "Set Down Servant," an African American Spiritual
Meg Stohlmann, conductor\
Geoffrey Boers is Director of Choral Activities at the University of Washington in Seattle, a program widely recognized as forward thinking, unique, and of great distinction. Under his direction, the graduate choral program has developed a singular mission: to nurture the whole student as conductor-teacher-servant-leader-scholar. This vision has led the program to become one of the most vibrant and innovative in the country, attracting students from around the world interested in exploring the future of our art. Through his teaching he is exploring the evolution of conducting gesture and rehearsal pedagogy and their connection with the emerging neuroscience of mirror neurons, empathy, perception, learning, and personal transformation. His exploration has led to new thoughts about conducting and teaching with regard to breath, movement, artistry, personal awareness, and cultural development. Recently, his work has led to the mentoring of local choral cohorts of teachers and conductors who are interested in building professional communities of ongoing mentorship and musical development. He has developed such mentorship programs across the United States and Canada. In addition to these thoughts about mentorship he is actively working with other leaders in ACDA and NAfME to develop a more unified and useful system for development of musicianship, assessment, adjudication, and repertoire grading.
Geoffrey maintains an active conducting, teaching, workshop and clinic schedule; his recent engagements have included conducting concerts in Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis, Meyerson Concert Hall in Dallas, New York’s Alice Tully and Avery Fischer Hall at Lincoln Center, the Mormon Tabernacle in Salt Lake City, and Benaroya Hall in Seattle. In addition he has served as artist-in-residence in Toronto, Ontario, Mainz, Germany, as well as Seoul, Korea with the world-renown choir the Incheon City Chorale.
In addition to his position at the UW, Boers sings professionally and is the conductor of the Tacoma Symphony Chorus where he conducts both the choir and symphony players in a four-concert season.
Since his tenure at the University of Washington, the choral program has become a leader in promoting the performance, study and exchange of Baltic music in the United States. The choir has toured to the Baltic countries in 2000, 2005, 2010, and 2013. Geoffrey Boers was awarded a prestigious Royalty Research Grant in 2004 to create a Baltic Choral Library in collaboration with the UW Library as well as State and academic libraries in the Baltic. This collection of scores, manuscripts, vocal music, and writings is the first of its kind in the United States. This collection has promoted yearly exchanges with choirs and conductors from the Baltic area who travel each year to Seattle. Further, it has led to numerous UW choral students winning awards and scholarships to travel, study, and work in the Baltic countries.
Giselle Wyers (she/her/hers) is the Donald E. Petersen Endowed Professor of Choral Music at the University of Washington, where she conducts the award-winning University Chorale and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in choral conducting and music education. She serves as the newly appointed School of Music's designated Diversity Liaison. University Chorale’s latest CD, Resonant Streams (on the MSR Music Recordings label) was featured in a 2018 Gramophone magazine article. Wyers is the newly appointed director of Concord Chamber Choir, an adult community chorus within the Columbia Choirs community. Her professional project choir Solaris Vocal Ensemble, specializes in the performance of contemporary American choral literature. Their premiere album Floodsongs, on the Albany Music label, won the American Prize Ernst Bacon Memorial Award for the Performance of American Music in 2017-18.
As a guest conductor, Wyers has led high school honor choirs and all-state choruses in New York (Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center), Kansas, Wisconsin, Georgia, Missouri, Louisiana, Connecticut, Nebraska, Texas, Washington, Alaska, Idaho, and Vancouver, Canada. She has conducted semi-professional ensembles across the United States and in Germany, the Netherlands, Estonia, and Sweden. Wyers was in demand for Zoom lectures during the pandemic with Res Diversa Chamber Choir (Chile), Western Washington University (a three-week group composition project), University of Iowa, Northern Illinois University, Montana State University, and with the Mastersingers of Milwaukee (Wisconsin), as well as conducting Nevada All-State online.
Wyers is a leading national figure in the application of Laban movement theory for conductors. She has served as guest lecturer in conducting at Sweden’s Örebro Universitet, European Festival of Church Music (Germany), Latvian Academy of Music, Eastman School of Music, Ithaca College, Westminster Choir College, University of Iowa, Hobart and William Smith Colleges and Portland State University.
Wyers’ choral works are published by Santa Barbara Music Publishing Company as part of the "Giselle Wyers Choral Series," and have been performed across the United States, South America, Canada, Australia, Cuba, and numerous European cities. She will conduct her 30-minute choral cycle entitled And All Shall Be Well, in Carnegie Hall May of 2022 with a consortium of NW-based choruses. In 2021-22, she will serve as composer-in-residence for the Greater Seattle Choral Consortium's annual festivities celebrating the return of in-person singing (her appearance is sponsored by Consortio). Wyers is also committed to mentoring scholar-writers in the field, and serves on the editorial board of ACDA’s Choral Journal.