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Your independent source for Harvard news since 1898

Alumni

Alumni Sing Out

The Jameson Singers help rekindle a love of music.

May-June 2011

Jameson Marvin

Jameson Marvin

Photograph by Kris Snibbe/Harvard News Office

The newly formed Jameson Singers, a Boston-area choral group of 52 members—47 of them alumni (39 of the College, 8 of the graduate schools)—were scheduled to make their debut on April 10 at the Payson Park Congregational Church in Belmont, Massachusetts. Singing music by Brahms, Monteverdi, and Samuel Barber, the group will be conducted by its founder, retired Harvard choral director Jameson Marvin. 

“It’s been amazing getting back into singing and not just using the muscles, but that piece of the brain,” says Juliana Koo ’92, the group’s manager and a former member of the Collegium Musicum. “I sang a little after I first graduated, but then life takes over—and if you don’t have it in your work life, music goes by the wayside.” 

That’s a common experience, judging by the number of alumni who’ve joined the group to rekindle the passion for choral music they felt as undergraduates working with Marvin, whose tenure spanned more than 30 years. “I wanted to recreate the same high-quality musical experience we had at Harvard not only for myself, but for them,” he says. “It can be very uplifting for the audience and for members to experience that.” 

Very few of the choir members are professional musicians; Marvin could think of only one. The others are mainly lawyers, doctors, or business consultants, like Koo, who seek a “great musical experience,” she says. More singers are needed, she adds; the group is open to members of the community as well as Harvard affiliates. Weekly rehearsals are required—as are annual dues of $100 (to cover the costs of rehearsal space, sheet music, and an accompanist). For more information, singers and music lovers can visit the group’s website at www.jamesonsingers.org.

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