Cantabile Choir (Grade 4 - 6)
Michelle Gehrz is the conductor of Cantabile and also teaches Angelica’s Kindergarten/First Grade Prep Choir Class. Michelle is a passionate and joyful choral conductor, church musician, organist, music educator, and accompanist in the Minneapolis, MN area. Michelle holds degrees in music education, sacred music, and organ performance from St. Olaf College, University of Notre Dame, and University of St. Thomas (ABT) and has her Orff Certification from UST.
In addition to conducting with Angelica, she is Artistic Director of Bella Lumina – an adult treble choir based in Hopkins, and she directs the Senior Chorale (55+) with the Music Association of Minnetonka, MN. She is active as a collaborative accompanist for ACDA-MN and MN-MEA All-State Choirs and serves as the R&R Chair for Children’s/Youth Choirs for ACDA-MN. Michelle will be the conductor of the ACDA-MN 4-5-6 Girls State Honor Choir in May 2023. Her school music teaching career has spanned all grade levels K-12 and has included teaching at Mounds Park Academy in St. Paul, St. Croix Preparatory Academy in Stillwater, and the Wayzata School District. She has served as Organist/Choir Director at many churches in MN including the Cathedral of St. Paul, Lake of the Isles Lutheran, Mount Calvary Lutheran in Excelsior, and Hennepin Avenue UMC. She is currently co-organist at St. Anthony Park UCC.
Michelle’s greatest calling and wish for her time on this earth is simply to be a “bringer together of singers. -- I hope to be a catalyst for others to spread light, to find hope, and to feel immense joy through song!”
Cantabile will sing some unison music, two-part songs and songs with simple three-part harmonies. The main purpose is to learn to sing beautifully and correctly using the best of choral literature from a variety of cultures. Performance opportunities can help the groups achieve this goal, but it is the learning that goes on in the weekly rehearsals that is most important. To sing beautifully and correctly, singers learn proper posture, correct breathing to produce a free floated tone and sensitively shaped phrases, good diction and articulation, how to release tension in the body, and how to listen and blend. Other important objectives for the singers are to learn to focus and concentrate on all aspects of music-making; to work as a well-disciplined, caring team; to learn to read music; to become aware of music history, musical styles, and the place of music in various cultures; and to become aware of the power of music as a form of expression.