Eastman Choral Association
The Eastman Choral Association is a non-profit organization founded in 1988 to enhance and promote the growth of choral activities in Manitoba’s Eastman Region. It is one of six regional affiliates of the Manitoba Choral Association committed to preserving and promoting Manitoba's strong choral tradition.
EMCA is an energetic and busy organization, presenting five key programs annually. The fall season brings the regional School Choral Workshop, consisting of four choirs and accommodating more than 400 singers from all corners of the Eastman region. The Eastman Youth Choir is also a vibrant bunch, rehearsing through two fast-paced weekends in the fall, followed by a never-to-be-forgotten regional tour. The annual Peace Concert, the Easter Sunrise Service and Sunday evening Vespers services provide opportunities for community members who love to sing with and for each other. Additional to the natural incentive to participate is the appeal of working with exceptional choral conductors from this province and beyond.
EMCA is excited to announce a new choir being formed in the 2018/19 season. The Eastman Chamber Choir will be directed by David Sawatzky, Associate Professor of Music at Providence University College. Information on how to join this choir will be available soon.
Board of Directors
President: Meredith Hutchinson
Vice President: David Sawatzky
Past President: Shannon Sawatzky
Secretary: Kim Bestvater Sidorchuk
Treasurer: Kathy Bergen
MCA Representative: Michael Dueck
Social Media: Candace Hamm
Eastman Youth Choir: Shannon Sawatzky, Leanne Warkentin
Choral Society: David Sawatzky
School Workshop: Kim Gordon, Meredith Hutchinson
Vespers Contact: Jen Wiebe Penner
Members at large: Nathaniel De Avila (Eastman Male Choir rep.), Albert Bergen, Gabriella Gallo (School/Community rep.), Jenna Patterson, Lindsay Patram (Accent rep.), Chris Plett, Gina Reimer, Susan Simcoe
A VIbrant new season: 2018-19
EASTMAN CHORAL SOCIETY
November 11: The ECS annual Sing For Peace concert was well attended and wonderfully received. The event took place at Steinbach Mennonite Church, and all four choirs report a terrific experience. These included The Eastman Choral Society, Eastman Male Choir, the newly-minted Eastman Chamber Choir and the Grade 4 Choir from Mitchell. A collection was held, with proceeds going to the local Steinbach Community Outreach.
The ECS annual Sunrise Service is set for April 21, 7:00 am at Grace Mennonite Church, Nathaniel de Avila conducting. Everyone is welcome to join the choir for the three rehearsals on Wednesdays: April 3, 10, 17 from 7-9 pm, and dress rehearsal Saturday, April 20 at 10 am. All rehearsals are at Grace Mennonite Church. Sign up at email@example.com.
EMCA embarked on the first venture of their Presentation Series on Dec. 9 at the Mennonite Heritage, bringing in Canzona, Manitoba’s professional Baroque choir, directed by
Kathleen Allan. Their performance of J.S. Bach's Christmas Oratorio was accompanied by the Pacific Baroque Orchestra on period instruments. Soloists were Tracy Dahl, soprano; Vicki St. Pierre, alto; Dann Coakwell; Tyler Duncan, bass. Hear the choir and orchestra in the majestic opening chorus here.
Concert #2: Handel's Messiah, David Sawatzky, conductor
Saturday, April 6, 7:30pm at Grace Mennonite Church, Steinbach, MB
EMCA is extending an open call to singers interested in an exciting opportunity to sing Handel's Messiah, together with soloists and orchestra and in conjunction with the Providence University College Singers. Singers who can attend at least 5 rehearsals, as well as the dress, are heartily welcome! Rehearsals will be from 7-9:30 pm at Grace Mennonite Church on Feb 26, March 5, 12, 19, 26, April 2, with dress rehearsal on April 5. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to express your intentions, and spread the word!
The Vespers Choir is comprised of singers from the Eastman region who accept the invitation to participate in six Sunday evening services per year, held at the Mennonite Heritage Village, Steinbach at 7 pm. Each inspirational service is held under the direction of a different conductor. The choir also provides music for the annual Sunday Saengerfest during Pioneer Days on the August long weekend. Dates for the upcoming season are:
September 30 - David Sawatzky, conductor
November 4 - Michael Dueck, conductor
December 2 - Lin Wiebe, conductor
February 3 - Nathaniel De Avila, conductor
March 3 - David Klassen, conductor
April 7 - Eric Marshall, conductor
Accent- Meredith Hutchinson, conductor
Accent is a women’s ensemble, ages 18+, based in Steinbach, Manitoba. They strive for a strong, unified sound, while remaining dedicated to the enjoyment derived from singing together. Their wish is to be accessible to the ears of their audiences, local and beyond, and to provide them with entertaining and polished performances, filled with a variety of musical genres. Their pianist is Annalee Schellenberg. Accent is proud to be a partner with the Steinbach Arts Centre. Their annual winter concert takes place in December, and you can hear them next on
June 9 - Spring Series Concert, 2:00 pm, Mennonite Heritage Village outdoor pavilion
Tickets: Adults/Seniors $10.00, Students $5.00, 14 and under free
Eastman Youth Choir
The Eastman Youth Choir, in its 29th year, enjoyed a successful season under the leadership of Rob Monson, with Kim Bestvater Sidorchuk as pianist. This year’s tour found the choir in a variety of venues that included the locales of Blumenort, Steinbach, Ste. Agathe, St. Pierre, St. Norbert, Landmark and Winnipeg. Visit their website for information on other dates to mark on your calendar, as well as to peruse all the fabulous fun they’ve had in past years.
Eastman Male Choir - Nathaniel De Avila, conductor
The Eastman Male Choir, in its third decade of existence, is comprised of men from all walks of life. They sing in numerous area church services, for care homes, and are known for attracting huge and appreciative audiences in fundraising concerts, most recently in two events with Harmony for Hope. (Warning: If you’re attending an Eastman Male Choir concert, come early!)
Contact this choir at email@example.com.
Annual School Workshop 2018
The annual Eastman School Workshop took place on Friday, October 12 at the Emmanuel Evangelical Free Church in Steinbach. 300 enthusiastic singers rehearsed through the day, then performed for a full house at 6:00 pm. New to this year’s workshop was the addition of a mass choir piece, in which all singers participated. What a moment! The evening was topped off by a rousing performance by the Eastman Youth Choir. This year's clinicians were:
Grade 5 - Katie Schroeder, with pianist Mary Lou Manke
Grade 6 - Albert Bergen, with pianist Jane Duerksen
Grades 7/8 - Gabriella Gallo, with pianist Colleen Koop
Grades 9-12 - Rob Monson, with pianist Kim Bestvater-Sidorchuk