Choral & Sacred Music

2017 USC Choral Leadership Workshop

Saturday, October 21, 2017
9:00 AM – 4:00 PM


Choristers will participate in a festival choir of over two hundred other high school singers selected from around the Los Angeles area led by Dr. André Thomas. Singers will attend leadership sessions focusing on the individual singer’s role in the success of a choral ensemble.


ANDRÉ J. THOMAS, the Owen F. Sellers Professor of Music, is Director of Choral Activities and Professor of Choral Music Education at Florida State University. A previous faculty member at the University of Texas, Austin, Dr. Thomas received his degrees from Friends University (B.A.), Northwestern University (M. M.), and the University of Illinois (D.M.A). He is in demand as a choral adjudicator, clinician, and director of Honor/All-State Choirs throughout the United States, Europe, Asia, New Zealand, and Australia.

Dr. Thomas has conducted choirs at the state, division, and national conventions of the Music Educators National Conference (MENC) and American Choral Directors Association (ACDA). His international conducting credits are extensive. They include conductor/clinician for the International Federation of Choral Musicians, summer residency of the World Youth Choir in the The Republic of China and the Philippines, winter residency of the World Youth Choir in Europe, and a premier performance by an American Choir (Florida State University Singers) in Vietnam. He has been the guest conductor of such distinguished orchestras and choirs as the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra in England, guest Conductor for the Berlin Radio Choir and the North German Radio Choir in Germany, the Netherlands Radio Choir, The Bulgarian Radio Choir and Orchestra, the Charlotte Symphony, Tallahassee Symphony, China’s People’s Liberation Orchestra and the Czech National Symphony Orchestra. Since 1988, he has also served as Artistic Director of the Tallahassee Community Chorus.

Thomas has also distinguished himself as a composer/arranger. Hinshaw Music Company, Mark Foster Music Company, Fitzsimons Music Company, Lawson Gould, Earthsongs, Choristers Guild, and Heritage Music Company publishes his compositions and arrangements.

Dr. Thomas has produced two instructional videos “What They See Is What You Get” on choral conducting, with Rodney Eichenberger, and “Body, Mind, Spirit, Voice” on adolescent voices, with Anton Armstrong. His recent book, Way Over in Beulah Lan’ – Understanding and Performing the Negro Spiritual. has quickly become a major source in this area of study. The African Diaspora Sacred Music honored Dr. Thomas as a Living Legend.

In 2011, Thomas’ dedication to and accomplishments in the choral arts were recognized by his peers in Chorus America when that the organization presented Dr. Thomas with its Distinguished Service Award. He is a past president of the Florida ACDA and the past president of the Southern Division of ACDA.


  • To Thee, Cherubim and Seraphim – G.F. Handel
  • You Are Mine – Christopher Aspaas
  • Der Tanz – Franz Schubert
  • Credo – André Thomas


  • Performance by the USC Thornton Chamber Singers
  • Director’s Lunch
    • Directors, chaperones and accompanists are invited to attend the workshop and observe all of the leadership sessions. In addition they will be provided a special lunch session with USC Thornton Choral and Sacred Music Faculty to allow for further discussion of leadership in the choral field.
  • Information session about USC degree programs & performance opportunities


Jo-Michael Scheibe chairs the Thornton School of Music’s department of Choral and Sacred Music at the University of Southern California. Currently serving as Chair of the Past President’s Council of the American Choral Director’s Association (ACDA), Scheibe has served as National President, National President Elect, Western Division President, and National Repertoire and Standards Chairperson for Community Colleges. Under his leadership, the USC Thornton Chamber Singers received the 2015 American Prize in Choral Music, performed for the 2015 ACDA National Convention in Salt Lake City (his seventh appearance at that event) and were one of twenty-five choirs selected to perform at the Tenth World Choral Symposium in Seoul, South Korea in 2014.

Read more about Jo-Michael Scheibe >


  • 8:00 AM – Registration
  • 9:00 AM – Welcome
  • 9:10 AM – Performance: USC Thornton Chamber Singers
  • 9:30 AM – Rehearsal #1
  • 11:30 AM – Lunch
  • 12:15 PM – Sectionals
  • 12:15 PM – Director’s Talk with Dr. Jo-Michael Scheibe
  • 1:30 PM – Rehearsal #2
  • 3:05 PM – USC Information Session
  • 3:15 PM – Performance: Choral Leadership Workshop Chorus
  • 3:30 PM – Closing Remarks
  • 3:35 PM – USC Campus Tours


  • $40 each for students (includes lunch, t-shirt, pencil, and all music)
  • $20 each for directors/chaperone/accompanists (includes lunch and t-shirt)

Payment can be submitted by check to:
USC Department of Choral & Sacred Music
840 W. 34th Street, MUS 416
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0851


Registration will open on May 1, 2017! Email
Fill out our Online Registration Form.

Deadline to register: Friday, September 15, 2017


Irene Apanovitch, Festival Coordinator:
USC Thornton School of Music: 213.821.5756