From Artistic Director Ken Hardin

Final bow as Sierra Master Chorale Music Director…

On December 16, I take my final bow as the music director for the Sierra Master Chorale. This means that I will continue as InConcert Sierra’s Artistic Director and as the conductor of our annual InConcert Sierra Orchestra concert.  It also means I won’t be spending thirteen weeks per cycle (twice a year) rehearsing and preparing the chorale for performances. How does that make me feel? Well…

Melancholy – I consider each and every chorale member, past and present, a friend and colleague. I’m going to truly miss working closely with them.

Relieved – I am going to relish having a little more time in my daily schedule.

Excited – The choir and everyone at InConcert are thrilled about the hiring of new SMC Music Director Alison Skinner, who will begin on January 1, 2019.

Since the Sierra Master Chorale began in 2008, I have been exceptionally proud to be at the helm. I have challenged them, and they have risen to meet every challenge! I am unable to express in words what the past eleven years have meant to me professionally and personally. It’s been an incredible and memorable adventure and life experience for which I am very grateful!

As I reminisce on the past, there are several singers whom I would like to point out for their leadership and dedication to the choir since its inception, such as Kathy Chastain, Connie Dorland, Ken Getz, Barry Howard, Steve Nicholson, Linda and Jerry Maloney, and Keith Porter. Not only have these folks played integral governance roles in the chorale, they have also been in every cycle with me! I also admire and appreciate so many others whose dedication of time, treasure, and talent make the Sierra Master Chorale what it is today, but that list is too long to recite… you’d be reading for days!

The rumor of my retirement is only partially true. Yes, I will no longer be the choral director of the outstanding Sierra Master Chorale. But I am absolutely going to remain as the InConcert Sierra Artistic Director, I will still enjoy conducting the InConcert Sierra Orchestra, and I will stand beside our new SMC choral director, Alison Skinner, to give her all the support she needs to be successful.

There is pride in creating something worthy of continuing on into the future. I was chosen by this fine group eleven years ago to help them create a “master chorale,” which I feel we have accomplished. The Sierra Master Chorale has now chosen Alison Skinner to continue its evolution.

And please join us for our May 2019 choral performances to help personally welcome Alison, with open arms, into the InConcert Sierra fold.

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