Bucks County Herald

Bach Choir of Bethlehem, Bel Canto Youth Chorus merge

Bel Canto and The Bach Choir perform together last Christmas.

Following a two-year affiliation, the boards of The Bach Choir of Bethlehem and the Bel Canto Youth Chorus agreed to formally merge, effective July 1.

The merger is the logical next step in The Bach Choir’s successful educational outreach (including Bach to School, Bach at Noon, Family Concerts, Choral Scholars, and Zimmermann’s Coffee House), especially the choir’s efforts to include young performers in its programming.

For Bel Canto, the move to the Lehigh Valley has resulted in expanded recruitment of students, as well as new performance and development opportunities.

The Bel Canto Children’s Chorus has changed its name to the Bel Canto Youth Chorus to reflect a wide range of young singers, and will operate within The Bach Choir of Bethlehem’s organizational structure.

Joy Hirokawa, founder and artistic director of Bel Canto, will remain with the organization and continue her leadership of Bel Canto’s programming and choral operations. Silagh White will join the Bach Choir staff as the Bel Canto Administrator.

Under the direction of Greg Funfgeld, there will be many opportunities for mutual support of educational expansion for both choirs, and for joint programming.


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