Resounding Harmony chorus collects donations for N. Texas food banks
Members of Resounding Harmony, Dallas’ newest community chorus, gathered on Dec. 3 to celebrate its inaugural concerts entitled "Grateful" and to announce the results of the food drive that accompanied the concerts.
The efforts benefited the North Texas Food Bank and Crossroads Community Services.
The chorus, under the direction of Timothy Seelig, was formed in August with a central core value of musical philanthropy.
Seelig said every concert benefits organizations in the North Texas community, with the group’s first concerts targeting the issue of hunger in the community. The benefit concerts were held at St. Andrew United Methodist Church in Plano and at Caruth Auditorium on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas.
Food drives were held in conjunction with the debut of the chorus at St. Andrew, SMU-In-Legacy and the SMU main campus. An online "virtual" food drive was also conducted through the North Texas Food Bank.
The chorus set an initial goal of $6,000 in cash and enough food to produce 50,000 meals. By the Dec. 3 event, the chorus had amassed $11,419.95 in cash contributions and more than 2,500 pounds of food allowing them to present a check to the beneficiaries providing in excess of 65,000 meals, Seelig said.
The sold-out concert at Caruth auditorium included appearances by Jose Bowen, dean of the Meadows School of the Arts, and Jan Pruitt, CEO and president of the North Texas Food Bank. The 140-voice chorus was joined on stage by the 80-plus members of the choral ensembles from Meadows under the direction of Dr. Pamela Elrod.
Because the concert sold out so early, additional patrons paid to attend dress rehearsal the evening before, with 100 percent of those ticket sales going directly to the food bank, Seelig said.
The chorus’ next concerts will be held at Caruth Auditorium May 30-31, and rehearsals for the spring concert session begin Jan. 18, with new member auditions on Jan. 26. Proceeds will benefit the Fine Arts Chamber Players’ efforts to provide arts for children who otherwise would not have the opportunity to enjoy music in their lives.
Seelig said that during the chorus’ first four months, it has received support from Sammons Center for the Arts, Art for Peace & Justice, Meadows School of the Arts, St. Andrew United Methodist Church, SMU-in-Legacy, Oak Lawn United Methodist Church, Maloney Strategic Communication and many others.
Seelig is also on the music faculty at SMU, is director of Art for Peace & Justice and artistic director in residence for GALA Choruses, based in Pittsburgh. This spring, he will conduct at Carnegie Hall, as guest conductor for the San Francisco Gay Men’s Chorus and the European debut of "Sing for the Cure" in London.
Seelig is conductor emeritus of the Turtle Creek Chorale, which he conducted for 20 years. His fourth book on choral technique will be published in February.
Additional musical staff for Resounding Harmony includes accompanists Antoine Spencer and Russ Rieger; musical advisor Pam Elrod; and composer-in-residence James Granville Eakin III. Administrative staff includes chorus manager Robert Huneke, production liaison Mark Frie, and photographer/videographer Shawn Northcutt.
The chorus rehearses Sunday evenings at Oak Lawn United Methodist Church, 3014 Oak Lawn Ave. For more information, go online to www.resoundingharmony.org.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition December 19, 2008.