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Old North Festival Chorus

Old North Church Marblehead MA

The Old North Festival Chorus gathers Old North’s Senior Choir together with enthusiastic singers – amateur to professional – from many neighboring communities in Marblehead. 

 

Each season, the Festival Chorus welcomes new voices while maintaining a devoted ensemble from previous years. 

Encouraged by a love for music and a reputation as one of the North Shore’s most spirited and talented volunteer choirs, the Festival Chorus & Orchestra has been lauded for its outstanding performances of major choral works each year.

A magnificent tradition – which started in the early 1980’s at Old North and was initially conceived as a gift to the Marblehead community – the Old North Festival Chorus has grown to include a record-breaking one hundred (100) voices.  Following tradition, two holiday concerts are presented as part of Marblehead’s Christmas Walk, in addition to a Spring Concert on the evening of Palm Sunday. Each section of the chorus is led by one of the four professional soloists from Old North Church. The chorus is accompanied by some of the Boston area’s finest orchestral players, all led by director, Maria vanKalken, Minister of Music at Old North Church.

Rehearsals are on Wednesday evenings from 7:30-9:30 starting in late September or early October. Rehearsals for the Spring Concert begin in February. Members of the chorus are required to purchase their own music -available at registration/first rehearsal - and pay a nominal registration fee. Singers are not asked to audition, but prior experience is preferred.

 

For more details please visit the website: www.oldnorthfestivalchorus.org

Festival Youth Chorus

The Old North Festival Chorus gathers Old North’s Senior Choir together with enthusiastic singers – amateur to professional – from many neighboring communities in Marblehead.  Each season, the Festival Chorus welcomes new voices while maintaining a devoted ensemble from previous years. Encouraged by a love for music and a reputation as one of the North Shore’s most spirited and talented volunteer choirs, the Festival Chorus & Orchestra has been lauded for its outstanding performances of major choral works each year.

A magnificent tradition – which started in the early 1980’s at Old North and was initially conceived as a gift to the Marblehead community – the Old North Festival Chorus has grown to include a record-breaking one hundred (100) voices.  Following tradition, two holiday concerts are presented as part of Marblehead’s Christmas Walk, in addition to a Spring Concert on the evening of Palm Sunday. Each section of the chorus is led by one of the four professional soloists from Old North Church. The chorus is accompanied by some of the Boston area’s finest orchestral players, all led by director, Maria vanKalken, Minister of Music at Old North Church.

Rehearsals are on Wednesday evenings from 7:30-9:30 starting in late September or early October. Rehearsals for the Spring Concert begin in February. Members of the chorus are required to purchase their own music -available at registration/first rehearsal - and pay a nominal registration fee. Singers are not asked to audition, but prior experience is preferred.

 

For more details please visit the website: www.oldnorthfestivalchorus.org

Maria van Kalken, Director of Music

Old North Church Marblehead MA

Maria van Kalken, Minister of Music at Old North Church and Director of the Festival Chorus, celebrates her thirtieth (30th) season in charge of Old North’s flourishing music program. Maria earned the degree of Bachelor of Music in Organ Performance from the Oberlin Conservatory of Music (Oberlin, Ohio) and Master of Music from the New England Conservatory of Music (Boston, MA). Her studies abroad have included pipe organ performance at the Sweelinck Conservatorium in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, under the patronage of the Rotary International Scholarship Fund, and the completion of an historical organ performance program in Pistoia, Italy. 

In addition to her work as Minister of Music – playing organ and directing the Senior Choir – Maria is Artistic Director of Concerts at Old North, presenting between two and six chamber music concerts annually, in the acoustically-glorious Old North Church in Marblehead. 

 

Maria is a senior staff member of the Boston Early Music Festival (www.bemf.org); as Assistant to the Executive Director, Maria is liaison to musicians from all over the world for the Festival’s biennial Baroque opera project, as well as the annual Chamber Opera Series, the Boston and New York Concert Series (at the Morgan Library & Museum), and opera touring and recording projects. 

Sarah Del Dotto, Youth Choirs Director

Sarah Del Dotto is a graduate of the prestigious, world renowned Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York.  While working towards her Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education at Eastman, Sarah was invited to work with the early childhood music program in the Community Education Division.  Through this program, Sarah taught children ages 6 months to 4 years old in the Greater Rochester Area.  Upon graduation, Sarah worked as choral director in Rush-Henrietta and Greece Central School Districts and was sought out as conductor for various choral music festivals and concerts throughout New York. 

Sarah held the position as head of the choral department at Johnstown High School before moving to Boston to pursue her Master’s Degree in Piano Performance at the Longy School of Music in Cambridge, MA.  Sarah graduated with honors from Longy in 2009.  She was also the recipient of the distinguished Mary Ellis Smith Prize for Excellence in Piano Pedagogy and Performance.  Besides being a dedicated choral director and teacher, Sarah has performed as a collaborative and solo artist throughout Massachusetts and New York.  Sarah served as a teaching artist for the Metropolitan Opera Guild for 3 years, bringing music education to underserved schools in Massachusetts.  She currently works as the middle school choral director and music teacher for the Dana Hall School in Wellesley, MA.  Sarah also maintains a piano studio in Salem with her husband, Josh (www.deldottopianoschool.com).  She currently lives in Salem with her husband and twin daughters.

Liz Smith, Bell Choir Director

Liz Smith of Swampscott, MA has been joyfully ringing handbells since 2008, when she joined her church’s bell choir.  She soon began ringing with New England Ringers, one of New England’s finest audition handbell choirs.  Liz has loved making music since childhood, when she studied piano and played clarinet, saxophone, and oboe in many school and community music ensembles.  She is thrilled to be with the Old North Church Hand Bell Choir.  Liz is also a math tutor at Hadley Elementary School in Swampscott.  When she is not taking pictures of the sunset or collecting sea glass, Liz spends her free time with her husband, their daughter, and their three grown sons.

Holly Cameron

Old North Church Marblehead MA

Soprano, Holly Cameron, is thrilled to sing with the Festival Chorus and Orchestra for her eighth season.  She has been hailed a “marvelous femme fatale” (Boston Musical Intelligencer) with “rip-roaring high notes” (The Boston Globe).  Some of her favorite operatic roles include: Donna Anna (Don Giovanni), Musetta (La Boheme), and Abigail (The Crucible), among others.  On the concert stage, Ms. Cameron has appeared as a soloist in works such as Carmina Burana, Brahms’ Requiem, Bach’s B minor mass, Poulenc’s Gloria, Mozart’s Requiem, Faure’s Requiem, Verdi’s Requiem, Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass, and Bach’s St. John’s Passion and St. Matthew’s Passion.  

A recipient of numerous honors, Ms. Cameron was a New England Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions and has won awards in the Shreveport Opera Competition, Sarasota Artist Series competition and the National Orpheus Vocal Competition, among others.  She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Voice Performance from New England Conservatory and a Master’s Degree in Voice Performance from Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.  Holly also has a growing reputation for her interpretation of the blues and soul genres and can be heard with the Chris Fitz “Bigger Soul” Band as part of Old North Church’s annual Blues Night in the Parish Hall.  For more information and other upcoming performances, please visit: www.hollycameronsoprano.com

Stephanie Scarcella

Old North Church Marblehead MA

Stephanie Scarcella, mezzo-soprano, is celebrating her 8th year with Festival Chorus, and she could not imagine her life without this wonderful community of people and musicians.  On the concert stage Stephanie has sung solos in Handel’s Messiah, Carissimi’s Jepthe, Haydn’s Great Organ Mass, Mozart’s Requiem, Saint-Saens’s Christmas Oratorio, Vivaldi’s Gloria, and Zelenka’s Magnificat.  An actress at heart, she is also an active opera singer.  Her professional operatic experience in the Boston area has been with Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Opera Collaborative, Odyssey Opera, Longwood Opera, and Arcadia Players.  

She has performed the following roles: Sister Helen Prejean (Jake Heggie’s Dead Man Walking with Boston Opera Collaborative); La Cenerentola (Rossini’s La Cenerentola with Boston Opera Collaborative); Zulma (Rossini’s L’Italiana in Algeri with Opera Company of Middlebury); Sally in Samuel Barber’s A Hand of Bridge; Dorthee in Massenet’s Cendrillon; Arsamene in Handel’s Serse; Hansel in Humperdinck’s Hansel and Gretel; and Piti Sing in Gilbert and Sullivan’s The Mikado.  Her most recent performances have included singing Anita in West Side Story with the Cambridge Symphony Orchestra, and solo recitals at Endicott College and for ARTCORE in her hometown of Casper, Wyoming.  For more information please visit her website at www.stephaniescarcella.com

Jonathan Cole

Old North Church Marblehead MA

Jonathan Cole, baritone, is from Dallas, Texas and has performed with organizations such as Central City Opera, Boston Lyric Opera, Odyssey Opera of Boston, Boston Youth Symphony Orchestra, Newburyport Choral Society, Boston University Opera Institute, and CU New Opera Works.  Jonathan has sung more than thirty roles, highlights including Ford, Mercutio, Guglielmo, and Marcello.  

An avid supporter of new music, Jonathan has performed lead roles in collaboration with Jake Heggie, Tobias Picker, and the late Stephen Paulus and has performed staged and workshop premiers of operas by William Bolcom, Lori Laitman, and Libby Larsen.  As an arts administrator, Jonathan serves as the Program Director of Boston University Tanglewood Institute (BUTI), an organization for which he has also taught on the vocal faculty.  Jonathan holds degrees from Baylor University, Boston University, and the Boston University Opera Institute.

Old North Church

35 Washington Street
Marblehead, MA, 01945
(781) 631-1244

office@onchurch.org

Our Mailing Address:

Old North Church

8 Stacey Street

Marblehead, MA 01945

Sunday Worship 8:00am

September — Mid-June
Old North Sanctuary

 

Mid-June-Labor Day
Chandler Hovey Park

SUNDAY WORSHIP 10:00am

Sunday After Labor Day--Late June

Old North Church Sanctuary

  • Worship with choirs

  • Sunday School

  • Professional childcare for infants and toddlers

During the Summer months, the 10:00 Worship service is not held.

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