Indiana University's Singing Hoosiers, a choral ensemble within the Jacobs School of Music, will celebrate its 60th anniversary with a gala performance March 27 at the IU Auditorium.
"For this 60th anniversary concert, many Singing Hoosier alumni from all over the world are coming back to IU to see old friends and relive their college days as Singing Hoosiers by attending the concert," said Michael Schwartzkopf, conductor of the choral ensemble. "The audience will once again see and hear a wide variety of music that they have come to expect from the Singing Hoosiers throughout its rich history."
The performance will commemorate the lives of Al Cobine and Erich Kunzel, two musicians who greatly contributed to the Singing Hoosiers in the past decades.
Cobine, who passed away last spring, was well known locally as a band leader and performer who also arranged or composed more than 150 songs for the Singing Hoosiers (including many songs by Hoagy Carmichael) beginning in 1963.
The Singing Hoosiers' collaboration with Kunzel began in 1974. Often called the "Music Man" during his life, Kunzel's association with the choral ensemble resulted in many concerts with the orchestras of Detroit and Indianapolis as well as the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, and six recordings, two of which were nominated for Grammy Awards.
The concert will include favorite popular music by composers such as Gershwin, Rodgers and Hammerstein, and Hoagy Carmichael and music from recent Broadway shows including Wicked and Copacabana. The show will also feature the individual talents of its members -- including harpist Emily Levin, who was featured during the ensemble's 2009 Chimes of Christmas concert, and the Varsity Singers, showcasing their precision choreography.
At its pre-concert banquet, Singing Hoosiers alumni will present the Distinguished Singing Hoosier Award to Barbara Stock (B.A.'78), an actress whose numerous TV credits include an appearance on a classic "Seinfeld" episode; David Deeg (B.A.'59, MA'66); Thor Steingraber (B.A.'88); and Samuel Bortka (B.A.'93, MA'97). The Outstanding Young Singing Hoosier Award will be presented to ElizaBeth Stanley (B.S.'01), who is currently in rehearsals for her third major role in a Broadway show, Million Dollar Quartet.
Singing Hoosiers director Michael Schwartzkopf was a member of the Singing Hoosiers from 1964 to 1969 and also was a graduate assistant while working on his master's degree from 1974 to 1976.