New ensemble course creates Women’s Chorale

by | Sep 22, 2015

The UMSL Women's Chorale currently includes 18 members and will perform everything from classical and contemporary to pop and a cappella.
Women's Chorale is a new for-credit performance class at UMSL. The chorale currently includes 18 members and will perform everything from classical and contemporary to pop and acapella. (Photo by August Jennewein)

Women’s Chorale is a new for-credit performance class at UMSL. The ensemble currently includes 18 members and will perform everything from classical and contemporary to pop and a cappella. (Photo by August Jennewein)

A new group of talented singers will soon be popping up at events throughout the University of Missouri–St. Louis and beyond.

“We have a surplus of talented women, so the idea of creating an ensemble for women only, to gain the experience of performing and also that shared camaraderie and fellowship, is a benefit for us and an asset to the program,” said Carrie Walther, a music education major and the student director of the newly formed Women’s Chorale.

Carrie Walther (pink jacket) is a music education major and the student director of the newly formed Women's Chorale.  (Photo by August Jennewein)

Carrie Walther (pink jacket) is a music education major and the student director of the newly formed Women’s Chorale. (Photo by August Jennewein)

Created through the Department of Music as a course taught by Gail Fleming, associate teaching professor of music at UMSL, the Women’s Chorale is a for-credit performance class.

“It is a class in which any female student who wishes to audition may join,” Fleming said. “And, on the heels of the ‘Pitch Perfect’ movies, I think we are a timely addition to the university.”

The chorale currently includes 18 members and will perform everything from classical and contemporary to pop and a cappella.

Fleming said selecting Walther as the student director was an easy choice.

“Carrie has functioned as an exceptional student in several of my classes,” she said. “I am fortunate to have her as a leader in the group; she’s a great role model for her peers.”

Before coming to UMSL, Walther traveled the world, working with students from many cultures, and she decided that she’d like to teach music to children.

“I wanted to go into music education and heard great things about UMSL,” Walther said. “More specifically, I’d like to teach middle school. Middle school is a great time of discovery and where kids really find themselves and what they enjoy. Middle school is where I fell in love with choir, and I still have teachers from then that I stay in touch with.”

The Women’s Chorale will be performing at several upcoming UMSL events including the Percussion Concert on Oct. 28, Vocal Point/University Singers Concert on Nov. 16 and UMSL Community Chorus Concert on Dec. 8.

“I’m hoping to collaborate with another women’s ensemble in the spring semester. In addition to performing on the UMSL campus, we’d like to perform in the community, possibly caroling at hospitals during the holiday season and possibly area high schools, hoping to recruit more females to study at UMSL.”

The ultimate goal for Fleming and the Women’s Chorale is to perform with one of the Mid America Production’s at Carnegie Hall in New York.

“She’s got such wonderful hopes for us,” Walther said. “She’s amazing and inspiring, and it’s exciting to be a part of something like this.”

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Jen Hatton

Jen Hatton

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