Sing through the semester

Sept. 3, 2014

By Signe Trewyn


Warhawk students have the opportunity to find their voices during the 2014 fall semester choir classes.

Concert Choirs (Music 171) is one of the many choirs that do not require a music major to be enrolled. They are encouraged to become involved in the choir program regardless of their major.

Concert Choirs is a mixed choir, with both men and women singing in unison and harmony.

Josh Ognenoff, junior, said he has been participating in choir since he was a freshman.

“A choir student can gain a sense of unity and togetherness while learning something,” Ognenoff said.

Ognenoff said he encourages students with an interest in music to prepare a song and perform at auditions.

“Students can expect a time commitment of an hour a day for four days a week practicing so that everyone gets their parts down correctly,” Ognenoff said.

Ognenoff said his favorite genre of music to sing in the choir is classical music. He is also in Chamber Choir and Vocal Jazz.

Of all the moments in choir, Ognenoff said his best experiences were the tours the choir singers take across the country. He said he enjoys the friendships made and the


success seen through teamwork.

Dr. Robert Gehrenbeck said after a small audition students can perform, have fun and earn credit.

“Students can audition by signing up across from Room 2005 in the Center of the Arts and doing vocal exercises so that I can tell if they have a light or dark voice, how they can remember melodies and their ability to read music,” Gehrenbeck said.

Rehearsals run 4:30 to 5:20 p.m. Monday through Thursday.

Gehrenbeck said some performances have featured Mozart’s compositions as well as songs from Sweet Honey on the Rock, a female a capella group that visited campus in 2012.

“We perform a wide variety of music, such as world music along with a piece related to Africa in the past year,” Gehrenbeck said. “Classical music can be heard during performances as well since the department focuses mainly on classical and jazz.”

Concert choir students have the opportunity to take a step further in the choir program by joining chamber choir.  The Chamber Choir holds call-backs for those who auditioned, and select a few to join.Vocal Jazz is another choir one can audition for.

Gehrenbeck said he believes the choir experience is a great way for students to release creative energy and rehearsals can be a relaxing activity for many students. He encourages any interested student to come and sing.

“The choirs do tour around the United States and the groups get tighter and we perform the same music throughout the tour as well as performing in many different venues, including cathedrals and auditoriums, but by the end of the tour we sound different,” Gehrenbeck said.

For more information see or contact the Director of Choral Events, Robert Gehrenbeck.