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Guest Artists


James Cumings, September 23

Mr. James Cumings has been teaching choral music since 1999 at Jackson Northwest Kidder Middle School.  During that time He has taken great pleasure in working with middle school singers--watching them grow both as musicians and young people who care about each other and their art.  During the summer he directs the 6-9 SSA choir at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp.   Recently, James was honored by being selected MSVMA’s “Teacher of the Year” at the 2019 conference.  


Marcia Barham, October 7

A teacher with over 30 years’ experience, most recently 17 years at the Hong Kong International School, Marcia has experience with, and understanding of, varied cultures and Australasian musics. Marcia’s extensive travels within Asia and West Africa have deepened her insight about, and commitment to, music within various cultures. An Orff-Schulwerk specialist, with a master’s degree in reading, Marcia uniquely combines instructional process with culturally authentic music-making experiences. 


Ralph Allwood MBE, October 21-24

Ralph Allwood, MBE is a British conductor, who currently conducts the choir of Queens College, Cambridge. He was previously the Precentor and Director of Music at Eton College in the UK until 2011 While at Eton Ralph established the  Eton Choral Courses of which there are now seven a year.  He conducts the Rodolfus Choir, a critically acclaimed group of singers aged 16–25. In addition, Allwood conducts Inner Voices, a youth chamber choir based in London. Set up in 2011, the choir brings together great singers from a group of London state schools to sing music from across the genre boundaries under the direction of Allwood.

Shawn Kirchner March 30-31, 2020

Shawn Kirchner is a composer/arranger, singer/songwriter, and pianist active in the music circles of Los Angeles whose choral works are performed throughout the world. His appointment in 2012 as the LA Master Chorale’s Swan Family Composer in Residence was the culmination of an ongoing creative relationship with music director Grant Gershon, resulting in numerous commissions and premieres at LA’s Disney Hall. Kirchner has also collaborated with and/or written for many leading choral ensembles across the country, including Conspirare, Santa Fe Desert Chorale, Lorelei Ensemble, San Diego Master Chorale, Los Robles Master Chorale, and the Atlanta Master Chorale.