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High School Honor Choirs

The High School Honor Choirs are presented in conjunction with the OCDA Summer Conference. These honor choirs are designed to focus on literature specifically for (T)TBB & SSA(A) voicings for students in grades 9 thru 12 of the 2019-2020 school year. High school music teachers and community choir conductors are invited to select their finest young singers to participate. Recommenders must be either a member of OCDA or the Ohio Music Education Association to submit recommendations.

This year we are pleased to announce the clinicians for our ensembles. Dr. Sandra Mathias, Artistic Director Emerita of the Columbus Children's Choir and Professor Emerita of Capital University will be conducting the Women’s Chorus. Additionally, Dr. Richard Schnipke, Assistant Professor of Choral Activities at Bowling Green State University will be conducting the Men’s Chorus. Please consult the summer conference web page for concert time and location.

Please refer to the specific areas below for instructions on recommendations, fees, directions and other information as it becomes available.
  • Registration Information
    This event will return for the 2021 OCDA Summer Conference
    The OCDA High School Honor Choruses are open to high school students in grades 9 thru 12 of the 2019-2020 school year. High school teachers and community choir directors are encouraged to submit their best students. In order to ensure balanced ensembles the HSHC is asking that teachers and directors to recommend two complete quartets (one female and one male) for each group. You can submit your student recommendations via our Online Recommendation Form. After all recommendations are collected, students will be sent a link to the online registration.
  • Women's Honor Choir Clinician
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    Dr. Sandra Mathias
    Artistic Director Emerita, Columbus Children's Choir
    Professor Emerita, Capital University

    Dr. Sandra Mathias is a graduate of SUNY - Fredonia (BS in Mus. Ed.); Ball State University (MA with Orff Concentration), The Ohio State University (Ph.D. in Mus. Ed.), and The Kodály Center of America (Kodály Certificate). She holds the title - Professor Emerita of Capital University, where she served as Professor of Vocal Music Education for 29 years. While at Capital, she developed the Master of Music in Music Education with Kodály Emphasis and conducted the Women’s Chorus. She is also Director Emerita of the Columbus Children’s Choir, where she served as Founder/Artistic Director for 25 years, where she conducted the New World Singers and Bellissima – the a cappella high school women’s ensemble. Under her direction, the New World Singers of the Columbus Children’s Choir performed at the 2007 national conferences of ACDA, OAKE, AOSA, and MENC; the National Repertory Orchestra in Breckenridge, CO; the Chautauqua Symphony at the Chautauqua Institution; and the Columbus Symphony Orchestra (CSO). In 2005. 2008, and 2011, the choir shared their voices with audiences in Europe. In 2010, they received first place in Youth Division of The American Prize. In December 2011, they performed at the White House.

    Dr. Mathias is the recipient of the Kodály Institute Intezetért Award, the CSO Community Music Educator of the Year, the Southside Settlement Arts Freedom Award, Outstanding Educator Award from OAKE and the OCDA Distinguished Service Award. She has presented papers at conferences in the United States, Hungary, Australia, England, Hungary, and China. During her career, she has presented sessions at AOSA, OMEA, OAKE and IKS. She is a Past President of the Organization of American Kodály Educators (OAKE) and immediate Past Vice President of the International Kodály Society. She has served as the R & S Chair for Children’s Choirs for OCDA and Central Division of ACDA. She has served as consultant for the Fort Wayne Children’s Choir. Dr. Mathias has also served as guest conductor for the Georgia All-State Middle School Treble Chorus, the OAKE National Children’s Choir, 5th Grade Honor Chorus for the Lake Charles, LA Honor Chorus Festival, and NY American Choral Directors’ Association Children’s Honor Choir. After her retirement from Capital University, she directed The Ohio State University Women’s Glee Club for three quarters.
  • Men's Honor Choir Clinician
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    Dr. Richard Schnipke
    Assistant Professor of Choral Activities, Bowling Green State University

    Dr. Richard Schnipke serves as Assistant Professor of Choral Activities at Bowling Green State University. His duties at BGSU include conducting the Collegiate Chorale and Men’s Chorus, as well as teaching graduate courses in choral repertoire and conducting. Previously, Dr. Schnipke held faculty positions at Xavier University and The Ohio State University and spent 15 years as a public school choral director. He holds degrees from Bowling Green State University and Ohio State University, and has done additional graduate studies at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.

    Choirs under Schnipke’s direction have sung for conferences of the Ohio Music Education Association, the Ohio Choral Directors Association, and the American Musicological Society, as well as national seminars of the Intercollegiate Male Choruses organization. Dr. Schnipke also frequently presents at state, regional, and national conferences on the incorporation of Dalcroze Eurhythmics in the choral rehearsal.

    As a vocalist, Schnipke performs regularly as a professional chorister and has served as tenor section leader for Cincinnati’s Vocal Arts Ensemble (Grammy Award winner, Craig Hella Johnson, music director). Dr. Schnipke also currently serves as Vice/Past-President of the Ohio Choral Directors Association.
  • Deadlines
    Teacher/Director Recommendation Forms
    March 15, 2021

    Student Registration
    April 30, 2021
  • Fees
    The fee for this year's honor choruses is $85. This fee will include a folder of music, access to practice tracks via our website, lunch, dinner, concert t-shirt and two free tickets to the evening performance.
  • Rehearsal Tracks
Any questions concerning the Men's & Women's Honor Choruses can be directed to the High School Honor Chorus Chair at