posted March 7, 2007

Chapel Choir and Symphonette Plan Tours

The Hope College Chapel Choir will be heading to the East Coast for its annual spring break tour this year with performances in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania between Friday, March 16, and Thursday, March 22.

The college's Symphonette will be traveling abroad two months later for its tour, visiting Europe in May.

The Chapel Choir will perform in Bethel Park, Pa., on Friday, March 16; in New York City on Sunday, March 18; in Colts Neck, N.J., on Monday, March 19; in Three Bridges, N.J., on Tuesday, March 20; in Blawenburg, N.J., on Wednesday, March 21; and in Rochester, N.Y., on Thursday, March 22. The choir will also present its annual post-tour "Home" concert on Monday, March 26, at 7:30 p.m. at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, located at 13th Street and Maple Avenue in Holland.

The Symphonette's tour will include performances in Munich, Salzburg and Prague as well as a variety of other cities in the region. Linda Dykstra, soprano and associate professor of music, will accompany the group on the tour as soloist.

The Chapel Choir was organized in 1929 and began touring annually in 1953. In addition to touring extensively in the United States and Canada, the choir has made a European tour seven times, most recently in May 2005.

The members are selected by audition. The choir is directed by Brad Richmond, who is associate professor of music and director of choral activities at Hope.

The Symphonette was organized in 1953. The group has toured coast-to-coast in the United States, and has also performed in two provinces in Canada, the British Isles, Europe, Australia and New Zealand. The Symphonette last traveled abroad in May 2003, touring in England and Wales.

The Symphonette's members are selected each year from the college symphony orchestra. The Symphonette is directed by Richard Piippo, associate professor of music and director of orchestral activities at Hope.

The Chapel Choir and Symphonette each maintain active local performance schedules. Both groups have also made numerous radio and television appearances, including the nationally televised "Hour of Power" from Garden Grove Church in California. Both groups are also featured in Hope's nationally broadcast Christmas Vespers program each December. The Symphonette was recently honored by being chosen as one of only four orchestras from around the country invited to perform during the 2007 National Conference of the American String Teachers Association, scheduled for March 7-10 in Detroit.