Here is a short history of over 40 years of the Masterworks Chorale in Muncie, Indiana:

  • 1978: East Central Indiana Community Singers (ECICS) was founded by four members of the Muncie Matinee Musicale: Carol Lyon, Tommye Beavers, Pat Brunette, and Bert Lyon. We now fondly refer to them as our founding mothers.
  • 1978-1979: ECICS sang its first concert. Larry Boye prepared the chorus to sing Berlioz’s L’enfance du Christ. It was performed with the Muncie Symphony Orchestra.
  • 1979-1980: The ECICS hired Dr. Virginia Whitehurst in a dual capacity as artistic director and also as the organization’s chief administrator. Each year a series of three or four concerts was performed. Dr. Whitehurst continued to shape the corporation through 1988, when she resigned to accept a position in North Carolina. She was largely responsible for the strength and success of the program.
  • 1983-1987: The choir sponsored the Indiana Renaissance Fair, a major project in outreach, promotion, and fundraising.
  • 1986: The name of the choir was changed to Masterworks Chorale because it better advertised the intention of the corporation.
  • 1987-1988: A Chocolate Festival and Ye Spring Madrigal Feaste were developed, the latter continuing annually for seven years.
  • 1988: Dr. William Wakeland was appointed to direct the Chamber Choir, which continued to perform many extra concerts in the community for a number of years. Dr. Wakeland served as assistant director through the 2000-2001 season.
  • 1989-1994: After a season-long audition process of guest conductors, David Doyle of Rushville, Indiana, was selected as artistic director. In the five years that he led Masterworks Chorale, his innate musical sensitivity, broad knowledge of vocal music, and skill in vocal development in individuals and groups resulted in Masterworks’ continued growth.
  • 1990: David Doyle led a choir of 40 from Masterworks Chorale to Carnegie Hall to sing in a performance of Dvorak’s Requiem.
  • 1994: After pre-season auditions, Eric Stark, who was a doctoral student at Indiana University, was selected as the new director. Part of his plan to improve performance quality was the initiation of singer auditions. He left the Chorale in 1997 to take a position at Butler University.
  • 1997: In July, 1997, Dr. Robert A. Kvam became the Chorale’s fifth director. Dr. Kvam is a former Dean of the College of Fine Arts at Ball State University. In addition to a 22-year career in music administration, he regularly conducted a variety of community and academic choral ensembles. A 20-year Masterworks reunion concert was presented in October 1997. All former directors and former singers returned for this event.
  • 2003: For 26 seasons the group has continued to present a subscription series of three or more concerts and maintain a high quality of repertoire. This past year was just as successful with guest artists such as Marvin Chandler, the Muncie Symphony Orchestra, Dr. Craig Priebe, Kathleen Maurer, Jennifer Cooper-Kauffman, and Daniel Doty.
  • 2005: This season was special in many ways. The Chorale performed in Sursa Hall in the new music building on the Ball State campus. Elijah was chosen as its debut work, which was performed with members of the Ball State Chamber Choir and the Muncie Symphony Orchestra. Guest conductor Don Neuen held the baton. There were two performances and Mary Jane Sursa spoke to the audience on opening night.
  • 2007: After a ten-year tenure, Dr. Robert A. Kvam resigned as artistic director of Masterworks Chorale. Daniel C. Blosser, adjunct professor of voice at the University of Indianapolis, was hired as the new artistic director during the 30th anniversary season. Under Mr. Blosser’s direction, the Chorale combined with the Muncie Symphony Orchestra for a second consecutive year in a stunning performance of Gustav Mahler’s Symphonie No. 2 in C Minor. Outreach to the community was highlighted with Mr. Blosser conducting the Winchester and Monroe Central choirs in a collaborative concert with Masterworks and a Valentine’s concert at Westminster Village.
  • 2012: Daniel C. Blosser completed his five-year tenure with the Chorale in a well-received Sursa Hall performance of Handel’s Messiah. Dr. Leonard Atherton stepped in as capable interim artistic director for the 2012-2013 season.
  • 2013: Dr. Andrew Crow was selected to become the Artistic Director in July 2013.
  • 2016: Masterworks Chorale commissions and performs Middletown Chronicles: The Making of Middletown America.
  • 2017: Masterworks celebrates its 40th season.
  • 2018: Dr. Kerry Glann was selected to become the Artistic Director in June 2018.