Vocal Ensembles at UNH
UNH Concert Choir and Chamber Singers
William Kempster, director | email@example.com
The Concert Choir is a large mixed chorus that studies and performs classical and modern literature. Performing four programs annually, the choir frequently draws upon student soloists. The concert choir rehearses Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 4:10 to 5:30 p.m.
The Chamber Singers is a small mixed group which studies and performs sacred and secular works from the Renaissance to the present. The Chamber Singers rehearse Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 11:10 to 12:30 p. m.
After extensive experience in his homeland, Australian conductor William Kempster moved to Canada in 1995 to pursue further academic study. In December 1997, William formed Ensemble de la Rue, originally to concentrate on the music of the fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries, a focus that has since expanded to also include rarely performed modern works for chamber choir. He has recorded four compact disc recordings with Ensemble de la Rue: One, The Cry, Memory Pieces and Live 2001 – 2008. In August 1999, he completed his Doctorate in Choral Conducting at the University of Alberta, with a thesis entitled “Chromatic Alteration in the Missa L’homme armé of Pierre de la Rue: A Case Study in Performance Practice”. In September 1999 William became Director of Choral Activities at the University of New Hampshire.
As an experienced orchestral conductor, Kempster was co-director of the Sydney Schools Symphony Orchestra for many years, and conducted orchestras in Australia, Canada, the United States, Romania and Bulgaria, including the Bulgarian premiere performance of the Fourth Symphony of Danish composer, Carl Nielsen. William’s conducting teachers have included Nicholas Routley, Leonard Ratzlaff, Malcolm Forsythe, Jon Washburn and Frieder Bernius, and his interests range from the central Renaissance choral literature through to very recent and commissioned works. His concerts in both Canada and the United States over the past ten years have included many World and North American premiere performances by composers such as Clare Maclean, Luciano Berio, David Matthews, Ross Edwards, Graham Koehne, Stephen Adams, Graham Howard, Christopher Kies and Martin Wesley Smith.
William remains active in scholarly research, and is currently working on two articles that shed new light on aspects of the la Rue repertory. He has published nine editions of Renaissance music with the English music publisher Prima la Musica, including works by la Rue, Josquin, Taverner and Clemens. William also is a part-time composer, with two works for percussion ensemble – Collisions and The Busy Box – published by C. Alan Publications, and a choral work, A Joyful New Year, published by Adoro Music Publishing.
As an international faculty member at UNH, William has actively pursued engagement in the international choral scene in particular. In May-June of 2006 William conducted the University of New Hampshire Chamber Singers on a 12 concert tour of eastern Australia. In June-July of 2009, William led a touring group representing both the UNH Concert Choir and the UNH Chamber Singers in concerts in the Czech Republic, where each group was successful in gaining both a Gold and Silver award at the International Martin? Festival and Choir Competition in Pardubice. Dr. Kempster and the Concert Choir were also the recipients of a special Jury prize for the Best Interpretation of a Czech Work by a Foreign Choir. In December, 2009, William traveled to Barranquilla, Colombia, to form part of the 3-person International Jury for the Colombian National Choral Competition, joining colleagues from Spain and Norway. In 2011 Kempster took the UNH choral ensembles to Austria to compete in the Anton Bruckner Festival held in Linz and St. Florian. The full group won Gold Medals in two divisions, a 2nd place in the Mixed Choir section, and 3rd in the Sacred Music section. The chamber group won a Silver Medal and 3rd place in the Mixed Chamber Choirs section. William has recorded three compact discs with UNH ensembles: Resonance Reverberations, and Connections featuring 20th century music from the United States and Australia.
David Ripley, director | firstname.lastname@example.org
Opera Workshop explores operatic singing, acting, and production techniques, offering public performances in the fall and spring semesters. It rehearses on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:40 to 5:00 p.m. Auditions for Opera Workshop are open to all students attending the University of New Hampshire. The productions frequently cast non-music majors in principal roles.
American Bass-Baritone David Ripley earned his Master’s Degree in Vocal Performance at the New England Conservatory as a student of Mark Pearson. Since then he has been widely heard in oratorio, recital, chamber opera, and early and contemporary programs and cabaret as well. Recent performance highlights include a trip in March 2008 with Boston Musical Theater to South Korea, the world premieres of Lori Dobbins’ The Rage of Achilles in Jordan Hall, and Kaddish, by Lawrence Siegel at the Cohen Center for Holocaust Studies. The solo release of Ne Point Passer (To Never Pass Away) on Centaur Records with pianist Arlene Kies, features the melodies of Gabriel Fauré and Henri Duparc and earned fine praise in the American Record Guide. Concerts with BMT featuring the American Song Book have been given in Paris, Brussels, Moscow and St. Petersburg, along with recordings
All That Jazz, live from Rachmaninoff Hall, We’ll Meet Again and Fly Me to the Moon. Mr. Ripley has frequently toured nationally in The Christmas Story with the Waverly Consort, and presented Schubert’s Die Winterreise and Die Schöne Müllerin cycles. As a champion of contemporary music, he was featured in Peter Childs’ one act opera Embers, on the play by Beckett. Richard Dyer, Boston Globe wrote: “Baritone David Ripley… gave an impressive demonstration of vocal skill, musicianship, stamina, memory and imagination.” Mr. Ripley’s recording of Bach Cantata 82, Ich habe Genug with Aston Magna Festival players (Centaur) was recently released with critical praise. His first solo CD, A New Season, with Kies, features works of Ives, Fauré, Schubert and Brahms. Mr. Ripley has regularly appeared at the Aston Magna Festival since 1990 and was for many years a frequent soloist with the New England Bach Festival. Now a full professor, in 2007 he was winner of the “Outstanding Associate Professor Award” at the University of New Hampshire, where he teaches voice and directs the opera program, which in the spring of 2009 presented Mozart’s The Magic Flute.