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Written by David Wikman   


The Muskegon Chamber Choir was founded by David Wikman its present Music Director and Conductor as a sixteen-voice ensemble in the Fall of 1963.  The first purpose of the group was to audition for a place in a summer music festival in Northern Michigan.  While the choir was accepted, the festival never got off the ground so rehearsals were halted.  After a few months the singers persuaded Wikman that they had something too precious to let go.  Rehearsals began again and the Choir’s first concert was given in April of 1964.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 13 January 2015 20:59
Written by David Wikman   


David Wikman, Music Director, is a native of Muskegon and a product of the Muskegon Public Schools.  His undergraduate work was completed at Hope College and his Master of Music degree is from Western Michigan University.  Additional conducting studies were completed under Herbert Butler, Kenneth Schermerhorn, and Robert Shaw.


Last Updated on Tuesday, 04 March 2014 01:58

Latest News

Last Season

When we survey last season, it was unusual to say the least.  Our first concert took us on the road to Grand Rapids to The Basilica of St. Adalbert.  What a thrill!  This beautiful sanctuary has an acoustic more commonly found in the great churches of Europe.  It was almost as if the space said, "welcome," to the sound of the choir.  We did some Renaissance pieces, a couple of things with the organ, played with distinction by Peter Kurdziel, Director of Music at the church, and finished with some of our own favorite sacred works.  In all a great afternoon.  December found us joining with the Motet Choir of Muskegon's First Congregational Church for Cantatas I & III of Bach's Christmas Oratorio.  Our own Tom Clark joined with three world-class soloists to make a very special experience for us all.  The April concert really shifted gears.  Noel Coward and Cole Porter took us a long way from our usual fare but the audience agreed that it was worth the trip.

This Past Year

We were able to offer a scholarship award to a graduating high school senior.  This hasn't happened in a few years due to budget constraints.  This year's winner was baritone Michael Merz from Western Michigan Christian High School.  Michael will attend Calvin College in the Fall.  He was valedictorian of his class, member of the choirs, and a student athlete.  One of the requirements for getting the award is singing a solo piece or two on our Spring Concert.  He is not planning on majoring in music.  As we think of it, this is appropriate for us.  Of those of us who sang this concert, only two make their living in music.  For the rest of us, singing is a joy and a worthy use of our leisure time.  Good luck, Michael.


What people say

50th Anniversary

As we look back over 52 years now, it seems impossible that we have endured this long.  There have been ups and downs, but for the most part we have enjoyed whatever portion of that time we have spent with the choir.  The fact that there are singers who are a lot younger than the choir is a sign of health.  That membership something to which a few young people still aspire makes us need to keep going.  We started out by deciding that we would be a non-parochial organization that would seek to explore the best in choral music.  It has worked, much to some folk's amazement.  We will keep it up until we can't stand it or you can't.  We hope we know first.


Coming Up

The Wreath of Carols has become a fixture and a favorite in our programming.  We go through as many as twenty-four to twenty-six Advent/Christmas/Epiphany pieces during the course of the concert.  Usually it runs from Medieval to Twenty-first Century music.  As many as eight or nine of our soloists will be heard along with this year's special guest, guitarist Bill Brettschneider.  The audience will join us in singing well-known carols.  The concert moves from piece to piece with no applause between.  In the past we have found something like a Stravinsky Ave Maria cheek to jowl with a Renaissance motet by Josquin.  It seems to work.  When we add the solo stuff there is an incredible variety of music.  If our calculations are correct, we have done thirty-six "Wreaths" in our fifty-two years.  In the years when we don't do it, most of us feel lonely for it.  One singer even said, "It isn't Christmas for me without it."  We hope you join us and come away feeling the same way.  This will be Music Director David Wikman's last full concert with the Chamber Choir.

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