Thanks to all who came out for Saturday’s CT-ACDA Fall Conference. We hope you enjoyed the sessions, the repertoire sharing, the camaraderie, and the MUSIC!

The conference was an enormous team effort. In addition to our Conference Committee members who put in many hours of work in advance as well as on site, there were also so many of you who saw a need and just helped - by providing some piano support for a session, distributing programs, moving equipment, or whatever was needed. I wish I could name you all - but we appreciate you!!

We are so lucky to have had the wonderful Doreen Fryling present a master class on rehearsal strategies, run our Directors’ Chorus session, and deliver the keynote speech on how to Shine Your Light. For those interested in her blog, you can find it here. And if you’re interested in reading the specific post Doreen mentioned in her speech, check it out here. Thank you, Doreen!

 Doreen Fryling, keynote speaker

Doreen Fryling, keynote speaker

 Doreen Fryling, clinician; Guilford High School “Voices,” master class participants Ellen Gilbert, Anthony Maiese, & Spencer Sonnenberg

Doreen Fryling, clinician; Guilford High School “Voices,” master class participants Ellen Gilbert, Anthony Maiese, & Spencer Sonnenberg

 Lorri Cetto & Matt Harrison

Lorri Cetto & Matt Harrison

A hearty congratulations to our three esteemed award winners!

Outstanding Young Conductor: Josh Cushing, Montville High School

Conductor of the Year: Matthew Harrison, Hamden Hall Country Day School

Lifetime Achievement: Lorri Cetto, Hall High School, ret.

Thanks to Tom Brand and our awards committee for your efforts in the selection process!


Thanks to our wonderful guest performers: Ethan Nash and the West Hartford Women’s Chorale, Joe D’Eugenio and Alchemy, Jeremy Milton and the Old Saybrook Chamber Singers, and Highline Vocal Jazz! A big shout out to our hospitality chair, Kaylin Spaulding, for going above and beyond to make sure all of our VIP guests were organized and taken care of!

 West Hartford Women’s Chorale

West Hartford Women’s Chorale

 Joe D’Eugenio & Alchemy

Joe D’Eugenio & Alchemy

 Old Saybrook Chamber Singers

Old Saybrook Chamber Singers

 Highline Vocal Jazz

Highline Vocal Jazz

Thanks to the superhuman efforts of Katie Jones, Russ Hammond, and Katie Kollias for organizing our middle and high school honor choirs. Our students were so lucky to have the opportunity to spend the day working with renowned conductors Christine Bass and Jonathan Richter, and pianists Jake Troy and Kathleen Bartkowski.

 Jonathan Richter and 2018 Middle School Honor Choir

Jonathan Richter and 2018 Middle School Honor Choir

 Christine Bass and 2018 High School Honor Choir

Christine Bass and 2018 High School Honor Choir

And of course, you can’t have a conference without sessions! We are so grateful to the exceptional organizational efforts of Louise Carrozza for lining up a day of relevant and interesting sessions and roundtables. Thanks to all who presented for your expertise and willingness to Shine Your Light for us! Those who attended, please fill out this survey to let us know what you thought about the sessions - we read ALL your responses when planning for the next conference.

 Eric Rubinstein, Programming for Women’s Choirs

Eric Rubinstein, Programming for Women’s Choirs

 Karla McClain, S-Cubed Sightreading Practices

Karla McClain, S-Cubed Sightreading Practices

And last, but most definitely not least, a huge thank you to the amazing Kevin Buno, site chair and past president of CT-ACDA. There is no way I could express how much work he, his students, and his colleagues put in behind the scenes to make this day possible for all of us. Hours and hours spent reserving spaces, moving chairs and risers, anticipating and solving problems, certainly MILES of running around to get it all done, managing sound and lights (thanks, Milo!!!), providing delicious food and refreshments (thanks, Erika!!), and on top of it all, preparing the wonderful GHS students in “Voices” to perform for us in the master class. Thanks also to Guilford High School band director Mark Gahm, orchestra director Tom Boates, and theater director Cara Mulqueen-Teasdale in allowing us to encroach upon their spaces in the middle of the extremely demanding musical theater, marching band, and concert season. We couldn’t have asked for a more perfect setting for our conference, and these folks made many sacrifices to make it possible.

kevin.jpg

As soon as I finish this post, I will start to edit all of the video footage and collect photos from our presiders and attendees to compile into an album of the day. Thanks to Jamie Spillane and Leslie Imse for the photos in this post! Keep an eye out for updates on our Facebook and Instagram pages, here on the website, and on our YouTube channel!

As I said, there are simply too many people to thank by name, but please know you are deeply appreciated. To all of you, for everything you do to Shine Your Light and keep choral music strong in Connecticut, thank you!

Your President,

Rachael Allen


Summer Conference 2018

The 2018 CT-ACDA Summer Conference was a grand success! A great day was had by all, thanks to our fabulous chair Dr. Cara Bernard and our gracious host Dr. Jamie Spillane from the University of Connecticut.

We were delighted to have many out of town folks attend, including VT-ACDA President, Stefanie Weigand.

Being an ACDA member is meaningful on a number of levels, both professionally and personally. One aspect of this organization that is often overlooked is the incredible sense of community. I was moved by the CT-ACDA community throughout the summer conference as the organizers, presenters, and fellow attendees all made this out-of-state visitor feel welcome from the very start. This more laid-back event was exactly what I needed to get my brain back in gear for the start of the school year, and I left full of excitement and ideas about repertoire, pedagogy, and new ways to support my singers. Thank you, CT-ACDA, for an incredible conference and I look forward to returning next year! 

Stefanie Weigand, VT-ACDA President

Be sure to check out the photos from the conference on our Facebook page, and video excerpts on our YouTube channel! 


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2017 Fall Conference


2017 Summer Conference



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