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South Dakota State to host S.D In-Service Music Conference

2017 Elementary Festival Honor Choir
South Dakota State University will host the South Dakota In-Service Music Conference Feb. 13-15 in the Oscar Larson Performing Arts Center. The Elementary Festival Honor Choir will perform Feb. 13 at 4:45 p.m. The 2017 Elementary Festival Honor Choir is pictured.

Music educators from around the state will gather for three days of concerts, workshops and training during the South Dakota In-Service Music Conference, hosted by South Dakota State University Feb. 13-15. Evening concerts held Feb. 13 and 14 are free and open to the public and will take place in the Oscar Larson Performing Arts Center.

Running concurrently with the conference are the South Dakota Bandmasters Association annual meeting and SDSU Choral Day. Approximately 1,000 elementary, middle school, high school and university students will perform during the conference.

Choral Day activities are scheduled for Feb. 13. Concerts open to the public include the Elementary Festival Honor Choir directed by Drake University professor Barb Sletto, at 4:45 p.m., and the Festival of Women’s Voices, directed by Canadian conductor Morna Edmundson at 7:30 p.m.

Edmundson is director of the internationally recognized ELEKTRA. She holds diplomas in music from Vancouver, Bellingham and Stockholm. She was recently honored to serve as conductor of the ACDA National Women’s Honor Choir.

Sletto is founder of the Heartland Youth Choir and has also conducted the Des Moines Children’s Chorus and Iowa Youth Chorus. Her duties at Drake include the Drake Women’s Chorale.

Other vocal groups performing during Choral Day include the Brookings High School Treble Choir, Chester High School Choir, Dell Rapids Chamber Choir and the Sioux Falls Lincoln High School Choir and Orchestra.

Conductor Chester Phillips will serve as conductor-in-residence for the bandmasters’ conference. Phillips directs the Georgia State University Panther Marching Band. Maryland-based author Lori Reichl will present development workshops for attendees.

Performing during the Feb. 14 evening concert with the SDSU Wind Symphony will be Zzyzx saxophone quartet, this year’s Patricia Noethe Pierce Artists-in-Residence at SDSU. The quartet is one of the finest chamber groups in the United States.

Other instrumental ensembles appearing during the conference include the Aberdeen Roncalli High School Band, Aberdeen Central High School Jazz Ensemble, Sioux Falls Memorial Middle School Band, Sioux Falls Washington High School Band and the University of South Dakota Symphonic Band.

For more information, visit the SDSU School of Performing Arts website for music at www.sdstate.edu/music, or by calling 605-688-5187.