Ephrata Cloister Chorus holding open rehearsals

By on October 7, 2015

The Ephrata Cloister Chorus, under the direction of Martin Hinkley, invites singers to attend open rehearsals on Tuesdays in October. Rehearsals begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Visitor Center at the Historic Ephrata Cloister in Ephrata.

The Ephrata Cloister Chorus was founded in 1959 by Dr. Russell Getz to bring to life the beautiful hymns and chorales composed at the historic site in the mid-18th century. The chorus sings several times each year in the Saal (Meeting House) on site, plus gives concerts at other historic sites or at churches throughout Pennsylvania and beyond. From time to time, the chorus has traveled to Eberbach, Germany, home of the Cloister’s founder, Conrad Beissel, on its European concert tours.

The chorus sings music selected from among the 1,000 hymns and chorales composed at the Cloister during the 18th century. When off-site, the chorus, by way of comparing Ephrata’s music with music of other early American groups, sings songs of the Brethren, Moravians, Shakers, New England School, and African-Americans.

Singers interested in joining the chorus should attend three consecutive rehearsals, and then the applicants will audition privately with Hinkley and two members of the music committee.

The audition will consist of singing scales, matching pitches with the piano, and singing samples of the music previously sung at the rehearsals. Applicants do not have to prepare a solo piece.

If there is an opening for the applicant’s vocal part, and the music committee agrees that the applicant’s voice meets the required sound, the applicant will be invited to join the chorus.

Contact Cathie Oliphant, concert coordinator, at 336-3030 for information and to indicate an interest in the open rehearsal.

The Visitor Center at the Historic Ephrata Cloister is located at 632 W. Main St., Ephrata.

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