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Texas Sings! Spring 2019 Newsletter

64th Annual

TCDA Convention

Thursday-Saturday, July 25-27, 2019 San Antonio, Texas

Mr. Tom Shelton, Jr.

Conductor TCDA MS/JH All-State Choir

Dr. Kent Hatteberg Headliner High School

Dr. Alec Schumacker TCDA Composer-in-Residence

Renew Your Membership Now!

(512) 474-2801

TCDA Dates and Deadlines All-State Choir Audition Deadline: March 24; Registration Fee Due May 15 Scholarship Application Deadline: March 31 TCDA Awards Deadline for Nominations: April 15 Housing is open! Book now for contract rates! Convention highlights are in this newsletter. Renew Membership Today and be able to vote on-line beginning May 1. Read about the Board Member Candidates on the following pages.

2019 TCDA Officers:

President: Pam Elrod Huffman Past President: Kari Gilbertson President-Elect: Thomas Rinn Elementary VP: Katy Flowers Middle School VP: Christina Chapman High School VP: Jason Dove College/Community VP: Jeb Mueller Church VP: Robert Stovall Secretary/Treasurer: Carisa Niemeyer Executive Director: Sharon Lutz

In Memoriam TCDA lost a dear friend and music educator, Rosemary Heffley, on January 29, 2019. Rosemary, a past president of TCDA (1979-81), taught choral music at Mesquite HS for 17 years, and went on to teach music education and choral singing at Texas Christian University, the University of North Texas, and Southern Methodist University. A founder of Mesquite Civic Chorus, she was also instrumental in founding Children’s Chorus of Greater Dallas. If you wish to honor Rosemary, please go to http://www.thechildrenschorus org/rosemary-heffley.html to donate to the newly established Rosemary Heffley Memorial Scholarship, under the auspices of the CCGD. Please let us know of colleagues who have passed on. Information may be submitted on-line.

TCDA Announces Kathy Blair Memorial Scholarship We are pleased to announce the establishment of an endowed memorial scholarship honoring Kathy Blair, a gifted vocal music teacher and singer in Austin, Texas. Kathy tragically lost her life at age 53. Her family and friends are establishing this scholarship to benefit entering freshmen into any undergraduate college leading to a degree in vocal performance, choral or church music. To read more about Kathy and her contributions to the choral community, and contribute to the scholarship, please visit

Interested in Board service? Submit name, contact information, and brief bio to Sharon Lutz, Executive Director, at

TCDA presents 3 Candidates for the TCDA Board of Directors High School Vice President Christopher Fiorini

Pauline Sexton

Michael Zook

Christopher began his 12 year teaching career at Langham Creek High School in Cypress Fairbanks ISD. His service to the choral profession includes Vocal Chair for TMEA Region 27 for four years, Treasurer for seven years, and member of the UIL Sight-Reading Committee. Christopher has also assisted at TMEA conventions as a section leader for the All-State Mixed and Tenor/Bass Choirs. Under his direction, the LCHS Chamber Singers placed numerous times at the American Classics Madrigal Festival, and in 2016, the LCHS A Cappella Choir sang as an invited choir at TMEA. In 2014 Christopher was named Teacher of the Year for Langham Creek High School. He has experience working with community and festival choirs as the director of the Olde Boys of the Houston Boychoir and working with AFA in Houston each summer. Christopher earned his Bachelor of Music Degree from the University of Houston.

Pauline is in her 25th year as a music educator in Texas public schools and in her first year as Head Choir Director at Grapevine High School. Before recent relocation to the DFW metroplex, she opened Robert Vela High School in Edinburg where her choirs received consistent Sweepstakes awards at UIL and “Best In Class” and first division ratings. Prior to that, she served as Associate Director at Nikki Rowe High School in McAllen, Head Director at De Leon Middle School and Travis Middle School, also in McAllen ISD, and as Elementary Music Specialist at Robert E. Lee Elementary School in Edinburg CISD. She has served as Elementary Division Chair, Vocal Division Middle School SecretaryTreasurer, and Vocal Division Chair for TMEA Region XV. She also served at the TMEA State Convention as Soprano Section Leader for the All-State Mixed Choir in 2017. In McAllen she held positions as the Director of Music at First Presbyterian Church and soprano section singer at First United Methodist Church. Pauline provided summer in-service for elementary music specialists in PSJA ISD and was a Section Leader for the Summer AllState Prep Camps at Texas State University and the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley. Pauline holds memberships in TCDA, TMEA, and TMAA and holds a BS degree in Music from Texas A&M Commerce.

Michael was hired in 2011 to be the head choir director at Vandegrift HS in Austin, and this past year marks his eighth year as head director of the VHS choir program. During these eight years all choirs competing at UIL Evaluation have received Sweepstakes Awards. The VHS Chamber Choir has consistently received “Performances of Distinction” at the highly competitive Madrigal Festival, and in 2017 and 2018, the choir placed in the top four. In 2016 the Vandegrift HS Chorale Women’s Choir was selected as an Invited Performing Choir at both TMEA and SWACDA conventions, and recently, in 2019, the Chorale Women’s Choir was invited to sing at the National ACDA convention in Kansas City, MO. Michael served as the inaugural Vocal Chair for TMEA Region 32, responsible for setting up and overseeing the first two years of the region’s functionality. He has been a region choir clinician at the middle school and high school levels, and consistently judges at UIL Evaluations around the state. Michael completed his student teaching at Spring HS, and taught at Twin Creeks MS for five years, feeding into the choirs at Spring HS. While studying for his undergraduate degree from Texas Tech University, Michael sang in the University Choir with Dr. Kenneth Davis and Dr. John Dickson. He holds a Master’s degree in Administration from Concordia University.

If elected… TCDA is a wonderful organization that has served the choir directors of Texas for many years. I am the type of person that jumps in when there is an opportunity to serve the field of choral music, and being elected as the High School VP for TCDA would be a great opportunity to give back to an organization that has given so much to me. If elected, I will work with the board to take TCDA in new and more relevant directions. Times and technology have changed the needs of our profession and, as such, I believe TCDA needs to change. I will work with the board to set a path that provides members with tools, resources and opportunities both unique and innovative. Aside from new approaches to the conventions, workshops and reading sessions, I believe we need to continue to grow the networking aspect of TCDA. From rep advice to new concert opportunities to just plain old friendship, my TCDA colleagues have been invaluable to me both personally and professionally. TCDA is an organization that doesn’t just need to be the “summer convention” but one that serves us all year long. If elected, I will work to make that a reality.

If elected… I am honored to be nominated in the company of such incredible colleagues. TCDA has always been a supportive influence in my life. In the late ‘80’s when I was a member of the Berkner High School Choir in Richardson, my director, Glenda Casey, was TCDA President. We watched her and learned from her, and only had an idea of how lucky we were to be there. Serving TCDA would be a privilege, especially in this exciting time of transition and growth. As I enter the last third of my career, I would like to spend my time giving back to TCDA and our family of colleagues. If elected, I will join the Board to provide the best opportunities for professional growth and personal connections that keep us going. TCDA is responding to this time of change and challenge, and I am excited to be a part of it!

If elected… I will try to bring sessions to convention that will focus more on inspiring teachers to launch the start of their school year, offering relevant sessions that will help directors RIGHT NOW as they prepare for students to arrive in just a few weeks. I want to watch master teachers teach, and I would like to see how they have structured their classroom from DAY 1 of the school year to help reinforce bigger concepts later in the year. We as directors should leave TCDA feeling fully equipped and confident to start the year!

TCDA presents 3 Candidates for the TCDA Board of Directors Middle School/Junior High Vice President Clinton Hardy

Kelly McDonald

Lorelai Taylor

Clinton is currently the director at Trinity Springs MS in Keller ISD. Choirs under his direction consistently receive Sweepstakes at UIL and have performed at TMEA in 2019 and at the National Conference for MS/JH Cambiata Convention in 2014 and 2018. Clinton serves on the UIL PML Committee and as the Region 30 MS Secretary. Previously, he served as Region 30 MS Coordinator, and as a member of the TCDA Ways & Means Committee and the TCDA/TMEA Hospitality Committees. He presented at the 2014 and 2018 TCDA Conventions and is a frequent adjudicator, clinician, and presenter across the state. In 2014, Clinton received the TCDA Young Director of Distinction Award. He holds a BME from Texas Christian University, a MME from The University of North Texas, and is a member of TCDA, TMEA, TMAA and ACDA.

Kelly is in her ninth year of teaching, and her fourth year as the head choir director at Kleb Intermediate in Klein ISD. In 2013, Kelly was awarded the TCDA Young Director of Distinction Award for exemplary teaching in her first five years. In her career, she has had the privilege of codirecting two TMEA Invited Choirs, as well as having received Sweepstakes at the UIL Concert and Sight-Reading assessments, and Best-in-Class recognitions at choral festivals in the state. She has presented sessions at both the TCDA and TMEA conventions, and conducted Region and Honor choirs in the state. In 2017, the Kleb Chamber choir was named a Commended Winner in the Mark of Excellence/National Choral Honors Project by The Foundation for Music Education. Kelly is a 2009 graduate of Baylor University.

Lorelai is in her 20th year as a choral music educator. For the past seven years she has been Head Director of Choirs at North Richland Middle School in Birdville ISD. Prior teaching positions include 11 years in the Hurst-Euless-Bedford ISD at Central and Euless Junior High and one year as Assistant Director at Heritage MS in Grapevine-Colleyville ISD. Previously, Lorelai served TCDA as the Region 31 MS/JH Coordinator. This past spring, her Varsity Treble choir performed at the TMEA convention in San Antonio, and at the Southwestern ACDA convention in Oklahoma City. In 2012, Lorelai’s Varsity Treble Choir performed at the Southwestern ACDA convention in Dallas. In Lorelai’s career, her choirs have consistently received Sweepstakes ratings at UIL as well as Best-in-Class and Overall Outstanding Choir awards at music festivals and competitions. She began her career as a private voice instructor, working with students at Bedford Junior High, L. D. Bell, and Colleyville Heritage. Active as a clinician and adjudicator, Lorelai holds memberships in TMEA, TCDA, ACDA, and TMAA. She received her BA degree in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy from the University of Texas at Arlington, where she received the Chamber Singers Award and Vocal Department Student of the Year.

If elected… TCDA is home to me and I want every member to know this feeling. I love teaching MS choir and want to foster this feeling in others who have the same passion. MS/JH is a crucial time when students yearn for a place to belong, and our programs should be that place! We need engaged teachers, passionate about MS/JS choir, in order to create lifelong singers and lovers of music. If elected, I will connect colleagues, administrators and students so they see the strength that IS MS/JH choir. I will listen to members’ thoughts and ideas and promise to serve our community with pride and humility. Here are a few ways I’d like to do this: • Harmonious Humanity – I tell my students that my first job is to make them better humans and the second is to make them better musicians. I want to help connect our MS/JH choir community so that we lift each other up and help others in need. • Hakuna Matata – No need to worry. I will bring in teachers and clinicians who are passionate about teaching middle school choir. I want every member to leave convention uplifted, rejuvenated, and eager to teach. • Value – Know that you are valued. Just as it is important for us to teach the whole child, it is important for each of us to have a voice.

If elected… As I wrap up my ninth year, I can honestly say that this is the first time I have felt truly settled in my own teaching abilities. Over these past nine years, the amount of mentorship that has been given to me by others in our profession, as well as the countless sessions that I have attended at convention, are the backbone of what has enhanced my skills as a musician and developed within me a strong foundation for excellence in teaching. I believe it is important to continue pouring into developing teachers, not just those fresh out of college, but also those in the thick of their tenure. By continuing to improve resources and provide high caliber sessions for teachers from new to veteran, with a focus on classroom management, relationship driven classrooms, and developing quality pedagogy, we as an organization will enrich the quality of music education for those in our care. I also believe that by encouraging mentorship between our master teachers and those just starting out in the profession, TCDA can become an organization that bridges the gap between tradition and innovation.

If elected… My goals as the TCDA Middle School/Junior High Vice President will be: • Teaching MS/JH students life lessons through choral music is my passion; therefore, it is my goal to provide a meaningful convention that will connect all MS/JH directors throughout the school year with continual means to strengthen, encourage, and inspire each other. • I will arrange quality workshops for the MS/JH Division that will teach, challenge, and inspire our students. • I believe it is important to keep our instruction “fresh” and current. Through online platforms, I will create an environment that encourages a simple way to collaborate for new and seasoned teachers alike. • I will explore and find the best new music that will motivate and encourage our students. I am certain my passion, endless energy, and love for teaching MS/JH will help me fulfill the expectations of the position. I am humbled to be nominated and would be honored to serve TCDA in this capacity.

TCDA presents 3 Candidates for the TCDA Board of Directors Secretary/Treasurer Deborah Barrick

Eric Cooley

Carla Hardy

Deborah has taught all levels in public and private schools since 1995. After teaching in both public and private schools in Alabama, Deborah moved to Killeen in 2001 where she taught elementary music at Mountain View and Willow Springs Elementary Schools, and middle school choir at Rancier and Union Grove Middle Schools. She has been the Associate Choir Director at Ellison High School since 2017. Her middle school and high school choirs have consistently earned Division I and Sweepstakes ratings at UIL Concert and Sight-Reading Evaluations, and in 2015 she was named Killeen ISD’s Secondary Teacher of the Year. In addition to her teaching duties, Deborah is an audition coach for students in the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor Conservatory of Music and the fine arts facilitator for KISD’s New Teacher Induction. Deborah previously served as the Middle School Coordinator for TMEA Region VIII Vocal Division and is the current Secretary/ Treasurer for TMEA Region VIII, handling the accounts for all divisions within the region. Deborah is a member of ACDA, TCDA, TMEA, and TMAA, as well as an active clinician and adjudicator, and has presented multiple times at TCDA summer conferences. She earned a Bachelor’s degree in Music Education from the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks, and her Kodály certification from Killeen ISD with Sheila Donahue and Phyllis King.

Eric is in his 12th year as a music educator and in his 6th year as Director of Choirs at Centennial High School in Burleson ISD. Prior to arriving in Burleson, Eric worked at Ferguson JH in Arlington and at L.D. Bell High School in the Hurst-EulessBedford ISD. Choirs under Eric’s direction are consistent “Sweepstakes” recipients at UIL Concert & Sight-Reading Contest and have been named “Best-In-Class” at both local and regional festivals. Most recently, the CHS Chamber Singers were honored with a “Performance of Distinction” caption at the American Classics Madrigal Festival in San Antonio. In addition to his role as director, Eric serves as the Burleson ISD Lead Teacher for Secondary Choir, Theatre, and Dance. In this position, he has worked to refine district administrative processes and expand performing arts experiences for both students and educators across the district. In addition to these roles, Eric has served as the Vocal Chair for TMEA Region 30 (2016-2018) and is currently completing his second year as the All-State Tenor Bass Choir Organizer. Professionally, Eric maintains active memberships in TMEA, ACDA, and TCDA. He holds a BME, magna cum laude, from Baylor University and a Master’s in Choral Music Education from Florida State University.

Carla Hardy has been in choral music education for 15 years. After nine years in West Texas, Carla and her husband, Jared, moved to Fort Worth to open Chisholm Trail High School in Eagle Mountain Saginaw ISD. In six years, the program has grown from 72 founding members to 300 with eight performing ensembles. For Carla, the greatest reward from many years of teaching is found not in awards or trophies but rather in seeing former students now serving in choir rooms across the state as outstanding young directors. Carla is a 2018 Distinguished Alumni for Wayland Baptist University. She serves as the Renaissance Director on her campus, an organization that cultivates positive campus culture through student leadership and initiative. Carla was named a Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction in 2016, Teacher of the Year for both CTHS and EMSISD in 2018, and the Jostens Renaissance National Educator of the Year in 2018. She has proudly served as the TMEA All-State Treble Choir Coordinator alongside some of the most outstanding directors in our state in both 2016 and 2017. Carla holds a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Master’s degree in Education, both from Wayland Baptist University.

If elected… I believe service is an important part of being a member of any organization and I would like to serve TCDA as Secretary-Treasurer. TCDA should be a source of resources and inspiration for teachers all over the state of Texas. If elected, I would like to strengthen the mentoring program for new and young teachers. I believe all teachers need a great support system to reach their goals. I would like to see us utilize technology more to reach out to directors all over the state, throughout the year and during conferences. This kind of outreach could bring more members into our community of learning without being inhibited by distance and/or financial constraints.

If elected… I can directly attribute a large portion of my growth as a music educator to the relationships and experiences associated with my membership in TCDA. Attending summer convention has provided me with countless opportunities to learn, reconnect with friends and mentors, and the chance to rekindle my passion for teaching and working with students ahead of the coming school year. If elected Secretary-Treasurer, I will use my experience as a convention volunteer to help refine the experience of our membership during summer convention and work with the board to identify ways in which additional opportunities for growth can be offered to our members throughout the school year. I look forward to the chance to serve this organization and work to ensure that it is as vibrant a resource for future generations of directors as it has been for me these past 12 years.

If elected… If elected, I would strive to contribute to this collaborative environment that built me up as a young director. Teaching choir was never on my radar until it was in my lap, but it has changed my life for the better. As that young teacher, TCDA met me right where I was: clueless, afraid, and without a bag of tricks! As a more experienced teacher, TCDA continues to raise me up, encouraging and equipping me to be better for my students. Serving students by building relationships with them through choral music is why I am thrilled to have the opportunity to serve TCDA in this capacity. I look forward to being a part of the team that aids in continuing to create the collaborative support for which TCDA is known. As the Secretary-Treasurer, it would be my great honor to serve you as you serve your students. Thank you for your consideration and enjoy your convention!

2019 TCDA Convention Thursday-Saturday, July 25-27 San Antonio, Texas

Exhibit Hall Hours:

Thursday, July 25 • 10:00 am – 5:00 pm Friday, July 26 • 9:00 am – 5:00 pm Saturday, July 27 • 9:00 am – 12:00 pm


Thursday 8:30 am – 6:00 pm Friday 7:30 am – 5:00 pm Saturday 7:30 am – 10:00 am


TCDA will continue to offer complimentary childcare

Publisher Reading Sessions NEW! in addition to TCDA Member-Led Tried & Proven Sessions

Thursday, July 25 8:30 am - New Teacher Academy

New to Texas? Beginning your career? Or just wanting to brush up on your skills? Register for this informative, all-day workshop to prepare you for the classroom. Topics include classroom management, student motivation, communicating with administrators, social media, and more! First-year teachers joining TCDA receive a 50% convention discount.

Friday, July 26

5:30-6:00 pm Sing-In

Gloria by John Rutter Dianne Brumley, conductor followed by

TCDA Soiree 6:00-7:30 pm

Immersion Day! NEW! Elementary Workshops specifically for Elementary-focused teachers. A special badge offers access to these clinics (only), as well as the Sing-In, Soiree, Worship Service, and Exhibit Hall. Three 60 minute morning sessions; a one hour lunch; two 60 minute afternoon sessions; and one reading session. Early registration $100; on-site $120. Sponsored by

Worship Service Pre-Concert Performance 6:00-6:45 pm

by The Centurymen, a men’s chorus of professional Christian musicians, who are church music leaders across the U.S.

Worship Service 7:00 pm Dr. Charles Fuller

featuring Dr. Charles Fuller, a choral conductor, administrator, director and church musician for over 30 years. Hailing from Little Rock, Arkansas, Fuller has been a part of the leadership team of The Centurymen since 2003. Peggy Graff joins as organist. The congregation will form the choir.

Saturday, July 27 Dallas Chamber Choir

Performance by , conducted by Artistic Director Jon L. Culpepper. A chamber ensemble of professional musicians, music educators and solo performing artists from North Texas, the choir’s programs are diverse and expansive, covering 500 years of choral literature of various stylistic, linguistic, and cultural significance. Jon L. Culpepper

2019 TCDA MS/JH All-State Choir

Renowned conductor Tom T. Shelton, Jr., Associate Professor of Sacred Music at Westminster Choir College, will rehearse and lead the All-State middle school/ junior high singers through a wonderful program of pieces, including one of his own publications. He will also present a session entitled Getting Out of the Rut—Ideas of Introducing a New Piece to Developing Singers. Shelton will be accompanied by Christopher Wagner, Choir Director at Ousley JH in Arlington, TX.

Tom T. Shelton, Jr.

Headliner - High School Division

Don’t miss Dr. Kent Hatteberg, Director of Choral Activities at the University of Louisville, where he conducts the Collegiate Chorale, Cardinal Singers, and University Chorus, in addition to teaching courses in conducting. Hatteberg will also present two clinics, one on engaging singers and saving time in your rehearsal, and another introducing new literature, along with a reading packet.

Dr. Kent Hatteberg


TCDA is pleased to announce Dr. Alec Schumacker, Director of Choral Activities and Assistant Professor at Hawai’i Pacific University, as our 2019 Composer-inResidence. Schumacker’s music applies to both high school and beginning college students. Don’t miss his exciting clinics at convention, one on authentically arranging popular music for your choir, and a second offering tips to “choir athletes” with tricks from the world of pro sports.

Dr. Alec Schumacker

High School Student Leadership Days Offered in 2019 NO High School Day during the 2019 Convention. Dates and locations include:

Central: Monday, July 29, Stony Point HS, Round Rock TX DFW: Tuesday, July 30, L.D. Bell High School, Hurst TX Houston: Thursday, August 1, Deer Park HS, Deer Park TX Rio Grande Valley: Monday, August 5, UTRGV Performing Arts Center, Edinburg TX Panhandle/West TX: Friday, August 9, Texas Tech University, Lubbock TX More information at


Pre-Register for the convention now!

Active Member Fee: $130; On-site Fee: $150 First-Year Teachers Joining TCDA receive 50% convention discount Reading Sessions NEW! Publisher in addition to TCDA Member-Led Tried & Proven Sessions Pre-Convention issue of TexasSings! Convention news will be published on NEW! No TCDA website in early May

NEW! A Pre-Convention Information Flyer will be mailed to members in mid-May Soiree immediately following Sing-In; one drink ticket per member NEW! NEW! Elementary Immersion Day on Friday, with introduction by sponsor Look for information on TCDA 2020 Winter Conference NEW! (confirmed Houston location, plus additional mini workshop offerings in Texas). Check website for details.

2019 TCDA Convention • July 25-27 • Henry B. Gonzalez Center • San Antonio, Tx

our Renew Y p Today i embersh TCDA M www.tcd 7900 Centre Park Drive, Suite A Austin, Texas 78754 Address Service Requested. Nonprofit Org. U.S. Postage Paid Austin, Texas Permit No. 789

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TCDA Spring 2019 Newsletter  

TCDA Spring Newsletter features candidates running for Board of Directors and summer convention highlights

TCDA Spring 2019 Newsletter  

TCDA Spring Newsletter features candidates running for Board of Directors and summer convention highlights

Profile for tcda