Dr. James Morrow
Director of Choral Studies
Conductor, Chamber Singers; Head of Graduate Choral Conducting Program
Dr. James Morrow is Director of Choral Activities at The University of Texas at Austin where he conducts the Chamber Singers and directs the graduate program in choral conducting. He is Founder and Artistic Director of the popular Bach Cantata Project and is also Founder and Artistic Director of Ensemble VIII, a professional early music ensemble devoted to historically informed performances of Renaissance and Baroque vocal works.
Under Dr. Morrow’s direction, the UT Chamber Singers have recorded two compact disks of American choral music on the Naxos label, and on the Koch International Classics label they recorded Sweet Music of Christmas , as well as Great Hymns of Faith with organist Gerre Hancock. He led the Chamber Singers in a modern-day premiere and recording of Brazilian composer José Maurício Nunes Garcia’s Missa de Nossa Senhora da Conceicao of 1810, and their latest disc of American folksongs is in post-production.
Dr. Morrow and the Chamber Singers recently performed Monteverdi’s 1610 Vespers with period instruments in celebration of the works 400th anniversary, as well as the complete Tenebrae Responsories of Tomás Luis de Victoria. Dr. Morrow’s choirs have toured internationally, singing for audiences in England, Scotland, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic. The UT Chamber Singers’ most recent international concert tour was to Brazil where they performed with the University of São Paolo Chamber Orchestra in historic venues in São Paolo and Rio de Janeiro, and they toured the Northeastern U.S. in spring 2011, performing in major venues in Boston, New Haven, New York City, and Washington DC.
Dr. Morrow performed as a choral singer with Robert Shaw and the Robert Shaw Festival Singers in France and in the United States, participating in several recordings for TELARC, as well as performing in concert as baritone soloist under Mr. Shaw’s direction. He is a featured soloist on a TELARC compact disc with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chamber Chorus. A student of the late Gérard Souzay, he has also performed as a baritone soloist with orchestras in a variety of repertoire, including Stravinsky’s Pulcinella , Vaughan Williams’ Five Mystical Songs , Arvo Pärt’s Passio , and the passions of J. S. Bach. He was twice selected as an Artist/Fellow at the Bach Aria Festival and Institute in Stony Brook, New York. Prior to his appointment at UT, he served as Director of Choral Activities at the University of Florida and at Hope College in Michigan.
Dr. Suzanne Pence
Associate Professor of Music and Human Learning/Choral Conducting
Conductor, Concert Chorale
Dr. Suzanne Pence joined the UT faculty in 1996. Along with her teaching assignment in choral music she serves as Director of Admissions for the Butler School of Music. Dr. Pence conducts the Concert Chorale, teaches undergraduate conducting, secondary choral methods, and supervises graduate students in Music and Human Learning with a choral emphasis. Dr. Pence previously held the position of Director of Choral Activities at Meredith College in Raleigh, North Carolina. She received the DMA in Choral Conducting from The University of Missouri-Kansas City in 1993 where she studied with Drs. Eph Ehly and Charles Robinson. She holds a Masters of Music Education degree from Wichita State University and a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois. Dr. Pence was the Choral Director at Neosho High School in Neosho, Missouri from 1983-1989. She is active in ACDA, has chaired the Southern Division Youth and Student Activities Committee, and the SW Missouri High School Division in 1987-1989. She is also a member of MENC, NATS, and Pi Kappa Lamda. Dr. Pence is the Music Minister at Highland Park Baptist Church. She is active as an adjudicator, and clinician/festival conductor in the midwest and the southeast.
Dr. B. Glenn Chandler
Choral Literature and Graduate Mentor
B. Glenn Chandler is Professor of Music Theory and Fellow to the Effie Marie Cain Regents Chair in Fine Arts. He holds a bachelor’s degree in vocal music education from Samford University, a master’s in sacred music from the Baptist Seminary in Louisville, and a PhD in music theory from the Jacobs School of Music at Indiana University. He held a Post-doctoral Fellowship in the Department of Music at Yale University and was appointed a Visiting Scholar in the School of Music at Cambridge University.
In 1972 he was appointed to the faculty of Central Connecticut State University and served as Chair of the Department of Music from 1981 to 1993. From 1994 to 2001 he was Professor of Music and Director of the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music at The University of Memphis. In 2001 he was named Director of the Sarah and Ernest Butler School of Music at The University of Texas at Austin, where he is also held the Florence Thelma Hall Centennial Chair in Music from 2001 to 2012. Under his leadership the Butler School has expanded its curriculum, created new centers of excellence, established an extensive international exchange programs, raised the school’s profile both nationally and internationally, and developed the largest endowment of any public university school of music in America.
Chandler is a Jean-Philippe Rameau scholar having translated his second treatise,Nouveau système de musique théorique and published in numerous journals. Throughout his career he has presented at regional, national and international conferences, such as the Society for Music Theory, NASM Annual Conference, and the Association of European Conservatories. Last May he was invited to deliver a paper on Rameau at a conference in Athens, Greece and recently was selected to give a paper at a conference in Istanbul in May 2016.
He has conducted choral groups throughout his career, including regional and all-state festival in different states. He has served as adjudicator, guest conductor, consultant and guest speaker for various organizations and events throughout his career. He was elected President of Connecticut Music Educators Association and was appointed to the Executive Committee of the national Music Educators National Conference. In Tennessee he served as President of the Tennessee Association of Music Administrator and In Texas he served on the Executive Board of the Texas Association of Music Schools where he chaired the General Music Commission. He is an accreditation evaluator for the National Association of Schools of Music, having chaired the accreditation evaluation committee for dozens of music schools across the country. He was twice elected to the Commission of the National Association of Schools of Music.
MM in Choral Conducting
Administrative Graduate Assistant, Texas Choirs
Cristian Cantu, pursuing his Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting at the University of Texas – Austin, is the Administrative Graduate Assistant for Texas Choirs at UTA and the Director of Residential Life of the Performing Arts Institute at Wyoming Seminary College Preparatory School. Most recently, Cristian was the Conducting Scholar of St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Columbus, GA, building a passion for the music of the Anglican-Episcopal church under the guidance of organist/choirmaster Rick McKnight. He also served as the Assistant of Choral Activities at Columbus State University where he studied wind conducting with Dr. Jamie L. Nix and choral conducting with Prof. Constantina Tsolainou. Cristian graduated from Columbus State University, Cum Laude, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music.
Having been a local active horn player and tenor in Columbus, GA, Cristian has performed with the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, LaGrange Symphony Orchestra, and the Springer Opera House Pit Orchestra. In Austin, Cristian is a tenor in St. David’s Episcopal Church Parish Choir and St. David’s Singers.
Bo Young Kang
DMA Choral Conducting
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Chamber Singers
Collaborative Conductor, University Chorus
Bo Young Kang is pursuing the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Choral Conducting at the University of Texas at Austin, studying with Dr. James Morrow. As a teaching assistant in the UT Butler School of Music, she has been Assistant Director of Chamber Singers and Concert Chorale, as well as Assistant with the Bach Cantata Project. In addition, she has served as Teaching Assistant for Graduate Choral Literature and Undergraduate Choral Conducting.
Ms. Kang has served as director of various choral ensembles, including Vox Beata, Collegium Musicum and UT Summer Choral Society at the University of Texas; Global Singers, The Twelve, and Korean Church Music Choir in State College, PA; and at numerous churches in Pennsylvania, Texas, and South Korea. She was selected to be a conducting fellow for distinguished music programs, including the Norfolk Yale Chamber Music Festival and the Choral-Orchestral Conducting Masterclass of Chorus America. Additionally, she has participated in conducting masterclasses with Simon Carrington, Vance George, Jerry Blackstone, Jo-Michael Scheibe, Julie Skadsem, David Hayes, Jacques Lacombe, Miriam Burns, Mark Shapiro, and Susan Medley. Her primary conducting teachers include James Morrow, Lynn Drafall and Christopher Kiver.
Bo Young Kang received the Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from Sook Myung University in South Korea and the Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from Pennsylvania State University, where she was Assistant Conductor of Concert Choir, Oriana Singers, and University Choir under the direction of Dr. Lynn Drafall and Dr. Anthony Leach.
Steven J. Knell
DMA in Choral Conducting
Graduate Teaching Assistant, Concert Chorale
Conductor and composer Steven J. Knell is pursuing the Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Choral Conducting at the University of Texas at Austin and is the founder and artistic director of echo, a professional chamber choir based in Salt Lake City and Atlanta. He most recently served as the Emerging Artist in Residence in Choral Directing at the Pennsylvania State University-Altoona, as well as on the faculty of the Harvard-Westlake School in Los Angeles. Mr. Knell received his Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from the University of Georgia and his Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Performance from the University of Utah. A versatile choral and orchestral conductor, Steve has also conducted the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra and the orchestra of the Conductor’s Retreat at Medomak. Mr. Knell, exercising his passionate advocacy for new music, has led premieres of several new choral and instrumental pieces. Mr. Knell also has a background in the education of young musicians, and has served as music director for numerous productions at the University of Utah’s Youth Theatre as well as a music instructor and teacher during the organization’s summer program.
MM Choral Conducting
Collaborative Conductor, University Chorus
Morgan Kramer, bass, is currently pursuing his Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting under Dr. James Morrow at The University of Texas at Austin. A native of Fostoria, Iowa, Morgan is a recent graduate of the University of Northern Iowa where he graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Music degree in Choral Music Education and received the Purple and Old Gold Award – the highest university honor awarded by academic departments. While at UNI, Morgan served as Assistant Chorusmaster to the UNI Opera Ensemble and performed as a guest conductor to Concert Chorale. He also performed numerous operatic roles including Mr. Page in The Merry Wives of Windsor and The Representative in A Game of Chance as well as Don Giovanni’s Masetto at the Toronto Summer Opera Workshop in Toronto, Ontario.