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Panel: Expanding the Canon

Exploring Choral Literature Curricula

The purposes of this panel are to discuss best practices in regards to diversity, equity, and inclusion in graduate choral literature courses. How might we reshape the curriculum to incorporate a more equitable representation of underrepresented musics and composers? How are we preparing our future conductors/teachers to meaningfully engage with a diverse body of repertoire?

The 75 minute session will include 50 minutes of panel discussion and 25 minutes of breakout time. The goal of the session is to foster dialogue and discussion between panelists and attendees.

  • Carolann Buff, Indiana University, moderator
  • Allegra Martin, College of the Holy Cross
  • Jace Saplan, University of Hawaii at Mānoa, NCCO Director of Affinity Groups
  • Elizabeth Schauer, University of Arizona

SPEAKER: Carolann Buff

Carolann Buff

Dr. Carolann Buff is a scholar, teacher, and musician regarded for both her research on Renaissance motets and expertise in historical performance. Buff is an Assistant Professor of Music in Choral Conducting at Indiana University. Her principal research interests explore the motet genre in the early Renaissance. She has performed with early music ensembles Liber unUsualis, the Boston Camerata, and Cut Circle. Recently, Buff was on the faculty of the Delaware Choral Academy in France.

SPEAKER: Allegra Martin

Allegra Martin

Allegra Martin starts several new positions in Fall 2022 – she is the incoming Music Director of Convivium Musicum in Boston; the incoming Interim Director of Music at First Unitarian Worcester; and she will begin teaching conducting at the Berklee School of Music as a part-time Assistant Professor. Previous positions have included Director of College Choirs and Interim Orchestra Director at the College of the Holy Cross, Director of Music at First Parish Cohasset, Artistic Director of the Cantilena Women’s Chorale, and Chorus Director at Lasell College. Dr. Martin holds degrees from Williams College and Westminster Choir College, and a doctorate from the University of Illinois. At the University of Illinois, she founded and conducted the University Mixed Chorus. Her research specialty is the choral music of Margaret Bonds. She has presented on Margaret Bonds and on the topic of diversity and inclusion in the choral canon at several ACDA conferences and at the 2021 Oxford Conducting Institute.

Dr. Martin is also an active professional singer, and was one of the founders of Anthology, a women’s vocal quartet that performed in the greater Boston area for six years and commissioned 22 works of new music in that time. She currently sings with the Schola Cantorum of Boston and in the past has sung with such ensembles as Cappella Clausura and the Video Game Orchestra. While at the University of Illinois, she performed Julia Wolfe’s award-winning Anthracite Fields with Bang on a Can and Vivaldi’s Juditha Triumphans with the Venice Baroque Orchestra. While at Westminster, she sang with the New York Philharmonic and the Philadelphia Orchestra, as well as in opera productions at the U.S. Spoleto Festival.

SPEAKER: Jace Saplan

Jace Saplan

Dr. Jace Kaholokula Saplan (they/them) serves as Director of Choral Activities and Associate Professor of Music Learning & Teaching and Choral Conducting at Arizona State University where they oversee the graduate program in choral conducting, conduct the ASU Concert Choir, and teach courses in choral literature and pedagogy that weave decolonial and critical theories with communal vocal practice. Recently, Dr. Saplan was named as the third Artistic Director of the Choral Arts Society of Washington (Choral Arts DC).

SPEAKER: Elizabeth Schauer

Elizabeth Schauer

Elizabeth Schauer serves as Director of Choral Activities at the University of Arizona, where she is recognized for her innovative and inclusive curricular approach. An award-winning educator, Dr. Schauer conducts Symphonic Choir and Arizona Choir, and teaches graduate and undergraduate conducting and choral literature courses with a student-centered focus to an international population of learners. Choirs under her direction have performed on conferences of ACDA, College Music Society (CMS), American Guild of Organists and Arizona Music Educators Association. Former students are active as music educators at public and private schools, churches, colleges and universities throughout the world.

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