Whitney Hale

By

College: Fine Arts

Great Scott! See What UK Men's Chorus Has Up its Sleeve for Fall Extravaganza

Published: Oct 26, 2016

 

UK Men's Chorus, under the direction of Jefferson Johnson, perform R. Vaughan Williams' "Epitaph on John Jayberd of Diss" at 2015 ACDA National Convention in Salt Lake City.

 

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Oct. 26, 2016) — Male vocal talents fill the fall air again at the 2016 University of Kentucky Men’s Chorus Fall Extravaganza. This year the acclaimed chorus will perform alongside the acoUstiKats and for the first time ever, the men of the Scott County High School choral program, including the Men’s Choir, Mastersingers and Great Scott! The concert will begin 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 29, at the Singletary Center for the Arts Concert Hall.

 

The UK Men’s Chorus is an 80-voice ensemble composed of students who range from freshmen to graduate students conducted by Jefferson Johnson, director of UK Choral Activities. These young men represent a variety of musical backgrounds and academic disciplines. Founded in the fall of 2002, the Men’s Chorus has grown in size and popularity each semester. The choir’s challenging and diverse repertoire includes literature that spans from Gregorian chant to music of the 21st century. Rehearsing only twice a week, the UK Men’s Chorus maintains an active performing schedule throughout the state of Kentucky, touring each semester. The chorus has achieved several distinguished honors in recent years. Most recently, the UK Men's Chorus was selected to perform at the prestigious 2015 American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) National Conference and at the 2016 Intercollegiate Men’s Choruses National Seminar.

 

The acoUstiKats, founded in 1993 by Johnson as a subsection of the UK Men’s Chorus, are the premier all-male a cappella ensemble in the state of Kentucky. This group of men has been featured on national television as a part of NBC’s “The Sing-Off” season four and has performed in countless venues across the United States from the shores of Hawaii to Graceland in Memphis, Tennessee.

 

The Scott County High School Choral Department is directed by UK alumni Brent E. Merritt and James F. Wright.

 

Merritt earned his bachelor's degree in music education at Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, where he studied with David Nott. In 1999, he completed his master's degree in music education at UK, where he studied conducting with Johnson. Merritt began his teaching career at Olympia Middle School and High School in 1989 before moving in 1995 to teach at Franklin County High School in Kentucky. In 2002, he joined the Scott County faculty where he teaches chorus, singers, piano and voice and serves as the chair of the music department. He has served as president of the Kentucky chapter of the ACDA and is currently serving as vice president.

 

Wright has been teaching at Scott County for three years as the assistant choir director, piano instructor and a music theory scholar. He holds a bachelor's degree in music education from UK, where he studied voice.

 

Tickets for the UK Men's Chorus Fall Extravaganza are $15 for general admission and $5 for students. Tickets can be purchased from the Singletary Center ticket office by phone at 859-257-4929, online at www.scfatickets.com, and in person at the venue. Free advance tickets for UK students with a valid ID are available at the Singletar Center ticket office up to the day before the concert during operating hours. 

 

For more information on the Men's Chorus Fall Extravaganza or the UK Men’s Chorus, contact William White, administrative assistant to UK Choirs, at william.white@uky.edu.

 

UK's Men's Chorus and acoUstiKats are part of the UK School of Music at the UK College of Fine Arts. The school has garnered a national reputation for high-caliber education in opera, choral and instrumental music performance, as well as music education, composition, and theory and music history.

 

 

UK is the University for Kentucky. At UK, we are educating more students, treating more patients with complex illnesses and conducting more research and service than at any time in our 150-year history. To read more about the UK story and how you can support continued investment in your university and the Commonwealth, go to: uky.edu/uk4ky. #uk4ky #seeblue

 

 

MEDIA CONTACT: Whitney Hale, 859-257-8716; whitney.hale@uky.edu

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