PARTICIPANTS UNIVERSITAS CANTAT 2019
Illinois Wesleyan University Collegiate Choir, USA
Conductor: dr J. Scott Ferguson
IIllinois Wesleyan University Collegiate Choir, USA
The Illinois Wesleyan University Collegiate Choir has established a long history of excellence through its on-campus performances and annual tours. The Collegiate Choir is dedicated to the performance of the finest sacred and secular choral music spanning six centuries and a variety of languages. The Choir took its first international tour in 2000 to Italy, and has since then presented concerts in Russia, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Spain, Germany, France, and Poland. The Choir has performed at the 2000, 2005, 2012, and 2015 Illinois Music Education Conferences, and at the 2008 and 2012 ACDA Central Division Conferences.
After a 2011 collaboration with the King’s Singers, countertenor David Hurley called the Collegiate Choir “one of the finest university choirs I have heard in my travels with the King’s Singers.” Estonian conductor Heli Jürgenson praised the choir’s “clear intonation, beautiful and sound harmony, multifarious strokes, and broad dynamic scale.” Renowned Czech conductor Jiří Kolář noted, “I was overwhelmed by the great intonation, precise rhythm, beautiful work with dynamics, and incredible stylistic interpretation of compositions from all style periods and genres.”
The Choir maintains the IWU Choral Commission Series, the oldest collegiate commission series in the United States, which in its 68-year history has added many significant works to the choral repertoire and resulted in a number of important world premieres at Illinois Wesleyan University.
J. Scott Ferguson is Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at Illinois Wesleyan University, where he conducts the Collegiate Choir and University Choir, and teaches studio voice, choral conducting, and choral literature. Dr. Ferguson received his undergraduate training at Oberlin Conservatory in organ performance. He completed graduate studies in choral conducting at the University of California, Irvine, earning the Master of Fine Arts, and the University of Wisconsin, Madison, where he earned the Doctor of Musical Arts. He has studied choral conducting with Robert Fountain, Joseph Huszti, Daniel Moe, and Howard Swan. His choirs have appeared on tour throughout the United States and Europe, and have performed at state and regional ACDA and NAfME conferences. The IWU Collegiate Choir has collaborated with the Orchid Ensemble from Vancouver, Canada and performed twice with the King's Singers, most recently on a commissioned work for the two ensembles. Dr. Ferguson is in demand as a choral clinician, festival conductor and adjudicator, and has presented choral workshops and lectures in the United States, Europe, and South America. He is a frequent member of juries at international choral competitions. He has published articles on Slovak choral music in the ACDA Choral Journal and is the compiler and editor of the Slovak Choral Series, published by Alliance Publications.