Blue Ridge Singers is pleased to welcome three new members to its Board of Directors for Season 12. The choir welcomes these members in the midst of a Covid 19 imposed hiatus which includes the cancellation of the spring 2020 concerts and the very popular December concert series in accordance with corona virus guidelines. Director and Conductor Dr. Jeffrey Alban comments, “The board has been hard at work developing ideas for smaller Christmas performances at outdoor venues”. Blue Ridge Singers’ newest Board members are Diane Adkins, Matthew Scharlau and Liz Hackney.
Diane Adkins moved into the area in 2017. She has Master’s degrees from Vanderbilt University and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She finished all but the dissertation for a Ph.D. from Duke University, and has a certificate in nonprofit management from Duke. Diane sang with the Piedmont Choral Society, Gaudette, and her church choir for forty years. A very active community member both locally and internationally, with her move to the Shenandoah Valley, she was naturally drawn to Blue Ridge Singers and saw an opportunity to help the group achieve its mission.
Matt Scharlau lives in Winchester, Virginia and joins Blue Ridge Singers with an extensive background in both professional and community choirs and theater for the past three decades. Recently relocated from the Midwest, Matt was choir director at St. Alphonsus Catholic Church in Mount Pleasant, Iowa. He continues to actively perform in theater and choir groups and enjoys working with others who share his love for choral music and vocal performance.
Liz Hackney is an artist in Winchester, Virginia. She has sold her paintings and taught in Virginia and Maryland. She has been a volunteer with the Shenandoah Area Council Boy Scouts of America since 2008 and has managed many fundraising events, including the annual Friends of Scouting dinner held at the George Washington Hotel. Liz has also served on the Executive Board for ten years.
President of the Board Sean Coffron comments, “After having sung with my fellow choristers in Blue Ridge Singers for the past seven years, I am excited to be a part of our newest endeavors to share our love of music with new communities. Our new board members will make a vital contribution in this effort as they offer their enthusiasm and expertise for our mission to create harmony, beauty and unity through the performance of challenging, cutting-edge choral music”.