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From our Music Director, Janice Hall

"If music be the food of love, sing on... Thank you for blessing me with this unique and exciting opportunity.  I have had the privilege of singing with this fine ensemble but when my life's schedule made it difficult to continue, I had the pleasure of listening to so many of the Chamber Singer's excellent concerts. Now I have the honor of working with them to continue the joy of choral excellence in my metamorphosis as Music Director.  I have a passion for quality choral music and even though I am soft for a great melody, I appreciate and enjoy working on a variety of music across the genres. I graduated from San Francisco State with a BM in Vocal Performance in 1980 and have been involved in the Sonoma County music scene ever since, in many and various ways.  I enjoy teaching music and working with K-8th grade students at Sonoma Country Day School both instrumentally and vocally, and I direct a small Lutheran Church choir that has taught me about commitment and the joy of expressing oneself through song. Sonoma County Chamber Singers fills a special place in our community and I am so excited for the opportunity to get to know and meet my new musical partners in song."  -Janice

Janice Hall was born and raised in Sonoma and is delighted to have the opportunity to direct the Sonoma County Chamber Singers after having had the privilege of singing with them in their early years as the Grainger Singers and Quire Quodlibet. Her first exposure to the joy of choral singing was singing in her church choir during her high school years, and then with the Sonoma Valley Chorale under the direction of Jim Griewe. She also played sax and clarinet in school bands and sang with an after school choir taught by Barbara McElroy. Ms. Hall began formal vocal training with Dr. Curtis Sprenger while attending Santa Rosa Junior College and she continued singing under his direction with the Northern California Chorale for over twenty years. While singing with this ensemble, she enjoyed her various roles as a student, singer, soloist, assistant director and business manager for several European Choir tours. 

Ms. Hall received her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance and Education from San Francisco State University and sang with the San Francisco Symphony Chorus and Chamber Choir under the direction of Vance George. She received her California teaching credential from Sonoma State University and is a life member of the American Choral Directors Association. Ms. Hall served as choir director for Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Santa Rosa and currently directs the choir at Faith Lutheran Church, Santa Rosa. She maintains a full time job as a K-8 music teacher for Sonoma Country Day School and teaches voice at Santa Rosa Junior College. She is the mother of three daughters and two grandchildren that she prizes as her '"grammy award".

About the Chamber Singers

Sonoma County Chamber Singers strives to promote
classical choral music on the highest artistic level.
Our mission is threefold:

to enrich the quality of life in our community by providing
a cultural resource which will help to identify Sonoma County as
a leader in the Arts both locally and regionally;

to provide a performance outlet for choral musicians who wish
to challenge themselves to perform at their highest personal level;

to engage audiences with the beauty of classical choral music, an art form
that is participatory, inclusive, and immediately accessible due to its reliance
on the first and most moving musical instrument – the human voice.

Arriving at the name Sonoma County Chamber Singers has been an evolutionary process for this ensemble.  We started in 1992 when Lynnette Young, then serving on the Board of Directors of the Volunteer Center of Sonoma County, asked eight singers (primarily members of the Northern California Chamber Chorale directed by Dr. Curtis Sprenger), to be wandering carolers to add Christmas spirit to the Giving Tree celebration in Santa Rosa's Montgomery Village.  We liked the sound of the voices together, so we decided to tackle more difficult and diversified repertoire. 

A series of talented conductors led us in the subsequent decade.  Robert Young directed us as the Grainger Singers, named after his favorite composer, Percy Grainger.  Asher Raboy, music director of the Napa Valley Symphony, took over in 1998, changing our moniker to the whimsical Quire Quodlibet.  And in October 2000, Andrew DelMonte conducted us in QQ's "Coming Home" concert series as well as for a special event concert featuring the works of Kirke Mechem at which the composer was present.

Even bigger changes awaited us.  After a two-year search for a conductor, Vernon Sanders became Music Director in the spring of 2002.  Our application process for non-profit status and the goal of a European concert tour in the summer of 2005 prompted a change to the more descriptive (and easier to pronounce) Sonoma County Chamber Singers.  Robert Hazelrigg stood up from the piano bench and took the baton in 2005.  But while the names have changed, the same personal initiative, camaraderie, and love of the choral repertoire have remained.

Our concerts are both entertaining and intimate, striving to bring the best of the choral repertoire to life.  Past performances have included music by Copland, Duruflé, Debussy, Grainger, Clausen, Monteverdi, Diemer, Handel, and Elgar. We have ranged from short and lively compositions such as Brahms’ Gypsy Songs and Britten’s Five Flower Songs, to more intense and serious works such as a Bach Cantata or the Mass in G of Ralph Vaughan Williams, accompanied by chamber orchestra.

The Sonoma County Chamber Singers has a membership drawn from the best vocal musicians in the North Bay.  In addition to choral music, they bring backgrounds in composition, conducting,  teaching, opera, acting, and instrumental performance. Together they enhance each other’s passion for performing.  Together they share with audiences the joy of music.