Chamber Singers celebrate 20 seasons

The Grove City Chamber Singers will hold a free concert on Nov. 16 to celebrate their 20th anniversary. Members include: (bottom row left to right) Steve Smith, Brian Courtney, Mike Mastrogianakis, Bryan Mulvany, Doug Reed and Bill Kerrick; (top row) Kristi Reed, Cecilia Adams, Darcie Brill, Janet Morley, Ellen Linn, Amy Hirth, Caroline Redding, Lori Gillfillan, Linda Randolph, Wendy Decker, Susan Chapman, Karen Glazier, Erica Gardner, MJ Van Sickle, Missy Borgman, Barb Albert and Bill Herbert. Not pictured: Mark Attenberger, Gerald Harvey, Judy Henry, Richard Paul and Sarah Smith.

The Grove City Chamber Singers are celebrating their 20th year of musical harmony.

The group, founded by Ellen Linn with initial seed money provided by the Grove City Area Chamber of Commerce, originally performed Christmas carols at the Town Center Tree Lighting ceremony. However, Linn, a choral director with South-Western City Schools, has watched the singers’ numbers swell as the group’s popularity grew over the last two decades.

"The membership now fluctuates from 24 to 28 members," said Linn. "We have sung for a lot of Grove City Community events but we have also sung for the Governor’s Tree Lighting, Ameriflora ’92, the Parade of Homes, Short North Gallery Hops, the Columbus Zoo, Cincinnati Reds games, and much more."

Linn, whose dream has always been to lead an adult choral group, co-directs with Kristi Reed, a fellow Grove City High School graduate who teaches music at an elementary school in Reynoldsburg. 

"She is an amazing musician, a true friend, and one of the most reliable people I have known," Linn stated.

Together, Linn and Reed lead the Grove City Chamber Singers in everything from pop to classical arrangements, from sacred to secular to spiritual music, and everything in-between. Their musical scores have even been heard by appreciative audiences outside of the United States. 

The Grove City Chamber Singers sang at the International Choral Festival in Austria under the direction of Weston Noble, the premier choral conductor in the United Sates. In 2003, the group felt privileged to sing special music at the Vatican.

Despite world recognition, the singers stay grounded in their music as well as their relationship with one another. Reed, who met her husband in the group, elaborated.

"It’s a family affair for us. We meet so many people and share so many common experiences. It’s nice because so many of us are Grove City High School graduates and we get to use our talents both at home and abroad."

Linn added, "We started out as people with a common interest in singing and making the most beautiful music, however, there is a comradery we share and many of us have become dear friends."

She also said, "I have felt the support of many of these singers through difficult personal times in my life."

On Nov. 16, the Grove City Chamber Singers will celebrate their 20th season with a concert. Entitled, "Let There Be Music!", the 3:30 p.m. event held at the Grove City United Methodist Church, is open to the public at no charge – though a  free will offering will be taken to defer expenses. 

The concert includes a sampling of pieces the group has performed over the years as well as a specially commissioned piece by nationally known composer Michael Martin, a music teacher at Hilliard-Darby High School. 

For more information, or to book the Grove City Chamber Singers, contact Linn at 216-4973.

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