April 4, 2017

The Buena Vista University Concert Choir was invited to Carnegie Hall in New York City to perform over spring break on March 26.

“The experience provided students the well-deserved opportunity to showcase their hard work and talent on an internationally recognized stage,” said Dr. Merrin Guice, assistant professor of music and director of vocal music at BVU.

The choir spent their 2015-16 school year preparing to compete in the Riva Del Garda International Choir Competition in Riva Del Garda, Italy, and won first place in the mixed repertoire competition there and second place in the sacred competition. During that international competition, a recording was made and sent to Manhattan Concert Productions for audition and review. After listening to the submission, the company invited BVU's Concert Choir to perform a spotlight debut performance at the opening of a choral-orchestral concert of the Schubert “Mass in G” in New York City. The choir also performed three other pieces under the direction of Guice.

“This was a highly selective process, and we are honored to have been the only choral ensemble to perform. This was a special event in the life of the music department and BVU.”

Dr. Merrin Guice

To prepare for their Carnegie Hall performance, the choir rehearsed every day—sometimes twice a day—throughout the week while they were in in New York City.

“To be chosen and featured to perform on a world-class stage was awe-inspiring and humbling,” added Guice. “The experience wouldn't have been possible without the tireless work and dedication of our students.”

In addition to the choir's Carnegie Hall appearance, the group also had the chance to perform at the University of Massachusetts Lowell on March 22 due to the connections Guice made while she was attending a conductor's conference in Italy in 2015.

The BVU students who performed at Carnegie Hall include:

Sopranos

  • Kathryn Baldwin, a junior music education major from Shenandoah
  • Abagail Brophy, a senior business major from Jefferson
  • Megan Coats, a senior music education major from Sac City
  • Ciera Fergen, a junior arts management major from Spirit Lake
  • Skylar Finch, a sophomore arts management major from Polk City
  • Stephanie Grigsby, a senior music education major from Sioux City
  • Monika Hill, a sophomore music education major from Storm Lake
  • Kathryn Keller, a junior biology major from Rolfe
  • Caroline Marlow, a sophomore special education major from Decorah
  • Rachel Rieckhoff-Faris, a freshman criminology/criminal justice major from Sergeant Bluff
  • Megan Snyder, a senior corporate communications major from Lehigh
  • Veronica Tapia, a junior accounting, business and vocal music performance triple major from Storm Lake
  • London Van Horbeck, a sophomore physics major from Cedar Rapids
  • Emily White, a junior instrumental music performance and music production and technology double major from Thor

Altos

  • Aubrey Anderson, a sophomore communication studies major from Worthington, Minn.
  • Alexis Bardwell, a sophomore digital media major from Van Meter
  • Natalie Brewer, a freshman computer science major from Cherokee
  • Katelyn Brinkerhoff, a senior environmental science major from Sioux City
  • Shayla Brown, a sophomore biology and instrumental music performance double major from Mapleton
  • Bailey Dean, a senior vocal music performance and theatre double major from Des Moines
  • Emily Gewecke, a sophomore history major from Lincoln, Neb.
  • Jerzy Gillon, a freshman political science major from Silver Spring, Md.
  • Emily Johnson, a senior digital media major from Storm Lake
  • Skye Kelley, a junior psychology and criminology/criminal justice double major from Decorah
  • Laura Klein, a senior music education major from Fort Dodge
  • Alyssa Kragelund, a senior business and accounting double major from Anita
  • Ashley Lemke, a senior communications studies major from Sibley
  • Rachel Kehrberg, a junior biology and music double major from Hinton
  • Ambrea Mouw, a senior business major from Le Mars
  • Rachel Mouw, a freshman Spanish education major from Sioux Rapids
  • Kylee Muyskens, a sophomore undecided major from Yale
  • Alyssa Parker, a freshman criminology/criminal justice and psychology double major from Des Moines
  • Rebecca Peters, a sophomore biology major from Audubon
  • Tara Smith, a freshman theatre major from Kansas City
  • Linda Torres, a freshman elementary education and vocal music performance double major from Storm Lake

Tenors

  • Austin Adamson, a senior computer science major from Indianola
  • Jacob Amhof, a senior music production and technology and vocal music performance double major from Fort Dodge
  • Evan Grant, a freshman computer science major from Storm Lake
  • Charles McMullen, a freshman biology major from Las Vegas
  • Matthew Schulz, a senior theatre and vocal music performance major from Waverly
  • Daniel Walker, a freshman vocal music performance major from Warner Robins, Ga.
  • Kamron Warden, a senior music education major from Indianola
  • Michael Watts, a senior business major from Dows

Baritone

  • Joseph Pietz, a junior digital media and music production and technology double major from Sioux Falls, S.D.

Basses

  • Spencer Bottorff, a senior digital media major from Dakota City, Neb.
  • Austin Dean, a junior graphic design and visual communication major from Dubuque
  • Joshua Hilty, a senior digital media and music production and technology double major from Bennett
  • Ryan Jensen, a sophomore history education major from Bridgewater
  • Kevin Klee, a freshman psychology major from Chicago
  • Jeffery Khamphasouk, Class of 2016
  • Corgan Peterson, a sophomore music education major from Atlantic
  • Michael Richardson, a senior vocal music performance major from Fort Dodge
  • Hunter Schmitt, a senior computer science major from Atlantic

Music at BVU

Take your talent to places you never imagined! Music majors can prepare for the stage or to extended areas of the profession including educators, composers and conductors.