Everett McCorvey, Artistic Director
Executive Producer and OperaLex Endowed Chair in Opera Studies
Professor of Voice & Opera-University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky
Founder and Conductor – American Spiritual Ensemble
Everett McCorvey is in his fifth season as the Artistic Director of the National Chorale.
Vocal Excellence is a hallmark of Dr. McCorvey’s work with professional choirs and with professional singers in concerts, masterclasses and workshops throughout the United States, Europe, South America and Asia, Poland and other countries. Over a span of almost 30 years, Dr. McCorvey has engaged choirs and audiences in moving and dynamic experiences with his unique and committed interpretation of choral music of all genres. Dr. McCorvey is a native of Montgomery, Alabama. He received his degrees from the University of Alabama, including a Doctorate of Musical Arts. He has performed in many cities and theatres around the world including the Metropolitan Opera, the Kennedy Center, Aspen Music Festival, Radio City Music hall, Birmingham Opera Theater, Teatro Comunale in Florence, Italy, Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, England, as well as performances throughout Spain, the Czech and Slovac Republics, Austria, Japan, China, Brazil, Ireland, Poland, Portugal and Hungary, Mexico, Peru and France.
Dr. McCorvey is also the founder and Music Director of the American Spiritual Ensemble, a group of 24 professional singers performing spirituals and other compositions of African-American composers. In its 22-year history, the group has presented over 400 concerts including 17 tours of the United States and 16 tours of Spain. In February of 2017, US Public Broadcasting Stations (PBS) presented a nation-wide special featuring the American Spiritual Ensemble.
Raised in the belief that every citizen in the country should find ways to give back to his or her community, city and country, Dr. McCorvey has been very active in his volunteer activities, working to keep the arts as a part of the civic conversation locally, regionally and nationally. He is a frequent advisory panelist and on-site reviewer for the National Endowment for the Arts in Washington, D.C. and he has served on the Boards of the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, National Opera Association and the Kentucky Arts Council. Dr. McCorvey has recently been invited to serve as a jurist on the Opera For All Voices initiative established by San Francisco Opera and Santa Fe Opera. The panel will review new operatic works for the industry with the goal of bringing new audiences to opera
Dr. McCorvey has served on the faculties of the New York State Summer School of the Arts in Saratoga Springs, New York and the American Institute of Musical Studies (AIMS) in Graz, Austria. He holds an Endowed Chair in Opera Studies and Professor of Voice position at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky.
In September of 2010, Dr. McCorvey served as the Executive Producer of the Opening and Closing Ceremonies of the Alltech 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games held in Lexington, Kentucky. The Opening Ceremony was broadcasted on NBC Sports and was viewed by over 500 million people worldwide. The Alltech 2010 FEI World Equestrian Games was the largest equestrian event to ever be held in the United States. He is married to soprano Alicia Helm. They have three children. On working with the National Chorale, Dr. McCorvey says that “Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of great choral singing with the National Chorale is indeed an honor and a privilege. It is my fervent hope that we can continue to sing, share and experience the goodness of humanity through music and learn of each other better through sharing in the arts.”
The National Chorale
The National Chorale, New York’s premier professional choral company, continues celebrating 50 years of excellence in vocal music education and performance during 2018-2019. Founded in 1967, the National Chorale is the only professional choral company in the United States to have established and maintained an annual subscription season in the major New York City concert halls – 50 seasons in David Geffen Hall (formerly Avery Fisher Hall and Philharmonic Hall) with additional concerts at Carnegie Hall. The Chorale presents a broad repertory of choral-orchestral works; seldom-performed works from many stylistic periods; opera-in-concert; American music theatre; and contemporary works, including commissions by the Chorale for its Lincoln Center Season.
In addition to its David Geffen Hall series, the Chorale has toured nationally; presented 19 summer seasons of New York Festival of American Music Theater concerts in Lincoln Center’s Damrosch Park and parks throughout the New York area; concert tours of New York State and New York City; vocal-instrumental chamber music series. and Concerts for Young People.
For 50 years the Chorale has also had a continuing major vocal-choral music education initiative in the New York public schools in cooperation with the NYC Department of Education and the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs. This initiative includes city-wide artist-in-residence programs; after-school high school choral programs; special contemporary music residencies; the popular New York City High School Choral Festival and the new Elementary and Middle School Choral Festivals.
In addition, the Chorale has a Partnership with the New York City Professional Performing Arts High School, now in its 8th year, providing vocal and choral training to young people who plan to enter the music profession as performers or music educators.
The Professional Performing Arts High School
The Professional Performing Arts High School works in partnership with the National Chorale, which provides vocal music instruction to PPAS Vocal students. These students live throughout New York City and are accepted into the school through a series of competitive auditions.
Students perform throughout the school year in both solo and ensemble performances. In addition to performances at the Professional Performing Arts High School, the Choir has performed at Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center, The National Arts Club, The Signature Theater, the Manhattan Theater Club, by invitation for the NYC Department of Education’s School’s Chancellor, at the United Nations and the New York Stock Exchange in collaboration with UNICEF for the #Imagine project, at the Invitational New York City High School Choral Festival at Hunter College/CUNY, and at the Intrepid Air and Space Museum for the Dedication Ceremony of the Space Shuttle Enterprise.
National Chorale and PPAS will be in their 9th year of Vocal Partnership in the 2018-2019 season.