Decatur Choral Society

Opus 24 Seeks New Conductor

Milt Scott, the Choral Conductor of Opus 24 the past 30 years, will be retiring from his position following our May 2022 concert. While we will miss his leadership and dedication to the organization, we are moving forward with initiating our search at this time for the best replacement to "fill his shoes".

Qualified/interested candidates should see this page which contains further information and a job description.

A Message from the President

The last time I wrote a letter from the President was April 12, 2020. We had stopped rehearsals in March, and in April made the decision to cancel the Spring 2020 concert. We hoped to be back to normal in the fall. Little did we know…

Nearly 18 months later, Opus 24 is finally back. Our first rehearsal took place on September 7, 2021. I wish I could say everything was back to normal, but it’s not. Singers are sitting one or two seats apart from each other. Most of us are wearing masks. It’s harder to hear each other and our conductor. And yet, it’s so satisfying to make music again. To be able to find a moment of peace in the music, to be moved by the lyrics. To look forward to welcoming you, the audience, back to our concerts, so we can all enjoy these things together.

The fall concert will look different this year, too. Instead of one concert on a Tuesday night, we will be holding two concerts on a Sunday, in the afternoon and evening. We will limit the number of tickets for each performance to allow for distancing within the audience. We will keep more space between the singers and the first row of audience members. But these changes are worth it – at least in our opinion.

We hope you will make plans to join us on Sunday, November 14 at 2:00 or 7:30 PM at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church. Tickets will be available in the weeks leading up to the concert.

In the meantime, stay safe, and we look forward to seeing you in November.

Becky Stubblefield

President, Decatur Choral Society & Opus 24 member

Conductor's Corner

COVID: Choirs Operate Virtually Indicating Difficulty. I don't know about you, but the last 20 months have been the most trying months in my career. I imagine you have been exasperated, as well. This concert is an attempt to resurrect the music we started 20 months ago for the Spring Concert of 2020. Now we start over as if we are a brand new ensemble, trying to cement together our relationships, as well as the literature.

This concert features many styles, ranging from Randall Thompson to Simon and Garfunkel. Two new pieces of literature feature the fine musicianship of cellist Susan Phillips. God Gives the Song is about coming out of the darkness. Let the Stable Still Astonish describes the manger place in all its crudeness and yet how the Christ child appears in Glory.

As always, there are many people to thank who made this concert possible. First, the singers: those who returned and our new members who challenge themselves at this time. Secondly, our accompanist, Anita Gifford. She has risen to the challenge of public concerts. I am grateful. And lastly, you, the audience.....the public, that through all the uncertainties, has come out once again to support live choral music. We in Opus hope you enjoy the music, and even more, the experience we all share in live music.

Footnote: We are planning to be unmasked for this concert. I have spaced the singers (which have been masked for all rehearsals) and kept the audience to reasonable numbers. We hope you will be masked, but as so many situations before, make a wise choice.

Milt Scott

Decatur Choral Society Purpose

A) To plan, promote and develop the opportunity for singing and performing a broad range of distinguished sacred and secular choral literature for the people of Decatur, Macon County and surrounding communities in Illinois.

B) To promote public appreciation of choral works and performance of them and to educate the general public in this type of music.