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Guest Artists, Spring 2022


February 7 - 11

Vincent Oaks, Conductor

Vincent Oakes is in his nineteenth year as Artistic Director of the Chattanooga Boys Choir. He earned the Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of Florida and Master of Sacred Music degree in Choral Conducting from Emory University, studying under James Morrow and Eric Nelson. In addition to teaching public school choral music and serving churches in Florida, Georgia, and Tennessee, he has also served as music director of the Emory University Exodus Singers and the Candler School of Theology Youth Theological Initiative. A frequent choral clinician and guest conductor of honor and festival choirs, recent conducting engagements have included the Vocalizze Choral Festival in Portugal, the ACDA International Conductors Exchange Program in Cuba, the Bangkok International Choral Festival in Thailand, and honor choirs throughout the United States. Mr. Oakes has also been a conductor and clinician at the Lake Junaluska, Massenetta Springs, and Montreat worship music conferences and a clinician on conducting, choral literacy and musicianship, and working with the adolescent singing voice.  He has published articles and reviews in Choral Journal and authored a chapter on children’s voices in the textbook Choral Pedagogy (3rd edition) by Robert Sataloff and Brenda Smith.

Mr. Oakes is an active member of National Association for Music Education and the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), of which he served as Southern Division Chair of Boychoir Repertoire & Standards from 2005-2011. He is a Past-President of Tennessee ACDA and served as President of ACDA's eleven-state Southern Region from 2019-2021, chairing its "Lift Every Voice" conference in Mobile, AL in 2020. Mr. Oakes is also the Chair of the Fine Arts Department and Director of Choral Music at the Baylor School in Chattanooga, where he conducts four student ensembles and the faculty choir. He received Baylor's 2016 Ireland Chair for Distinguished Teaching and the Belz-Lipman Award for Excellence in Holocaust Education from the Tennessee Holocaust Commission in 2021.

March 8 - 10

David Conte, composer

David Conte (b. 1955) is the composer of over one hundred and fifty works published by E. C. Schirmer Music Company, including 7 operas, works for chorus, solo voice, orchestra, band, and chamber music.  He has received commissions from Chanticleer, the San Francisco, Oakland,  Stockton, and Dayton Symphonies, the Atlantic Classical Orchestra; and from the American Guild of Organists. In 2007 he received the Raymond Brock commission from the American Choral Directors Association, one of the nation’s highest honors in choral music. His work is represented on many commercial CD recordings, including in 2015 Chamber Music of David Conte, on the Albany label;  in 2016 Choral Music of Conrad Susa and David Conte, on the Delos label; and in 2018 Everyone Sang: Vocal Music of David Conte on the Arsis label.   His opera  The Gift of the Magi has received over 30 productions in the U. S., Canada, and Europe. He co-wrote the film score for the acclaimed documentary Ballets Russes, shown at the Sundance and Toronto Film Festivals in 2005, and composed the music for the PBS documentary, Orozco: Man of Fire, shown on the American Masters Series in the fall of 2007.   In 1982, Conte lived and worked with Aaron Copland while preparing a study of the composer’s sketches, having received a Fulbright Fellowship for study with Copland's teacher Nadia Boulanger in Paris, where he was one of her last students.   He earned his Bachelor’s degree from Bowling Green State University and his Master’s and Doctoral degrees from Cornell University.  He is Professor of Composition and Chair of the Composition Department at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music.  In 2010 he was appointed to the composition faculty of the European American Musical Alliance in Paris. In 2014 he was named Composer in Residence for Cappella SF, a professional chamber choir in San Francisco.  In 2016 his song cycle American Death Ballads won First Prize in the NATS Composition Competition, and was premiered by tenor Brian Thorsett and pianist Warren Jones at the NATS Conference in Chicago.

March 28 - April 1

Dean Luethi. Conductor

Dr. Dean Luethi serves as the Director of the School of Music, Director of Choral Activities, and Associate Professor at Washington State University. He received his BM in Vocal Music Education from the University of Wisconsin – Green Bay, his MM in Choral Conducting from the University of South Florida in Tampa, and his DMA in Choral Music from the University of Illinois – Urbana/Champaign. Before working at WSU, Dean was a high/middle school choir and musical theatre director in the Green Bay area. He also served as a visiting instructor at the University of South Florida in Tampa.

Known for his work as a choral pedagogue, Dean has presented research, workshops, or conducted choirs at festivals, conferences, and competitions in the US, India, China, Cuba, Canada, Austria, Poland, and Germany. He is published in Choral Journal and Music Educator’s Journal. As part of his service to the National Choir Council of NAFME, Dean works with and has prepared a virtual choral conducting series for choral conductors in India. Dean’s book Aligning Voices: Exercises to Build Choral Musicianship is available through GIA Publications.

Dean lives with his wife, Ruth Boden, in Pullman, WA. In his free time Dean enjoys amateur photography and spending time with their two cats.