A MESSAGE FROM OUR DIRECTOR
I grew up in a musical family. My father was a member of the local Barbershop Chorus and was off performing with a Barbershop Quartet the day I was born, much to my mother’s dismay. Mom and Dad both sang in their Methodist church choir, and when I was 10 they began taking me to choir practice with them. My life was forever changed. From then on, I was part of one choir or another until I graduated from seminary at age 27.
Music was the bedrock of my life through the turbulent 1960s. As I pursued conscientious objector’s status during the Vietnam War, the music of protest spurred me on and gave voice to a generation seeking justice and peace. I took inspiration from Pete Seeger and his rendition of “How Can I Keep from Singing:”
When tyrants tremble, sick with fear,
And hear their death-knell ringing,
When friends rejoice both far and near,
How can I keep from singing?
In prison cell and dungeon vile,
Our thoughts to them go winging;
When friends by shame are undefiled,
How can I keep from singing?
I agree completely with vocal leader James Sills who states that “group singing has the power to change lives. It is a joyful expression of our humanity that gives us purpose, encourages us to be fully present, and helps foster social bonds.” I have sung in choirs that required a rigorous audition, were composed of highly-trained musicians, and performed flawlessly. I prefer choirs of volunteers who share a love of music, a commitment to participation, and a passion for fostering joy, justice, and peace.
While I have never “made a living” at music, it is music that has made life worth living. My work life has been varied. I have been a parish pastor, the executive director of a homeless shelter, an advancement officer in higher education, and a capital campaign consultant.
Whatever the paid work that I have done, I have always interpreted the world and my work through musical metaphors. I have been devoted to building harmony from the various melodies that are people’s lives, and in doing so, seeking to cultivate joy, justice and peace wherever I can.
I am thrilled for this opportunity to join you in mission as a secular community choir dedicated to creating peace in our lives, community, and world through song.
—Jerry Campbell, firstname.lastname@example.org
Our Accompanist, Mikiko Petrucelli
Mikiko S. Petrucelli was born in Tokyo, Japan, where she started playing piano at age 4. She attended the Mushashino Academia Musicae and received her undergraduate degree in Piano Performance. She then moved to Germany and earned a Performance Degree from Hochschule für Musik in Detmold, Germany.
After she returned to Japan, Dr. Petrucelli played with the string chamber group Uovo as their guest pianist, touring Japan and giving chamber and solo concerts in Germany. She has played on NHK radio, the national public radio station in Japan, and won a special award at the Josef Dichter Competition in Vienna, Austria in 2001.
In 2003, Dr. Petrucelli moved to the United States and received a Master’s of Music from Baylor University and Doctor of Musical Arts in Piano Performance from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln.
In 2008, after winning the Chiara Competition, Dr. Petrucelli performed Dvorák’s Piano Quintet with the Chiara Quartet. She has also studied Historical Performance Practice in fortepiano. In 2008, she was invited to an international conference as a result of a complete Hixson-Lied Presentation of Scholarly and Creative Activity Grant. She attended an international conference, “The Art of the Fortepiano,” and performed in several concerts in Middleburg, The Netherlands.
Dr. Petrucelli has extensive experience as a chamber and solo pianist as well as an accompanist. As of May 2010, she completed three years of service at Doane University in Crete, Nebraska, as an adjunct faculty member. She works extensively throughout the Rogue Valley as an accompanist and performer. She is the accompanist for the Rogue Valley Chorale, Siskiyou Singers, and Ascension Lutheran Church. She has also done many world premiere performances by local composers.