Akron Symphony Chorus

About the Chorus

At nearly 100 members, the Akron Symphony Chorus is dedicated to achieving the highest level of choral singing. Its volunteer singers represent all walks of life from our Akron community and surrounding areas. The Chorus is an indispensable part of the Akron Symphony Orchestra, and along with the Orchestra and the Akron Youth Symphony, functions as part of the Greater Akron Musical Association.

The Akron Symphony Choral Society, as it was first known, began rehearsals in the fall of 1956. The first performance was Brahms’ German Requiem on April 17, 1957, under the direction of Robert Shaw. In the years to follow, the renamed Akron Symphony Chorus performed much of the major choral repertoire of the last six centuries, as well as several regional first performances and world premieres.

Highlights have included Honegger’s Joan of Arc at the Stake featuring world-famous actress and dancer Vera Zorina, and in recent years, Mozart’s Coronation Mass with guest conductor Jeannette Sorrell, Handel’s Messiah directed by James Mismas, and an all Brahms program conducted by Grammy and Emmy award-winning guest conductor Vance George, retired choral director of the San Francisco Symphony Chorus. In 2007, the chorus performed Verdi’s La Traviata, conducted by Christopher Wilkins.

Vocal Placements

The Akron Symphony Chorus will hold vocal placements for new members via Zoom with Akron Symphony Chorus Director Chris Albanese. Vocal placements are by appointment only.

Vocal placements consist of:

  • A brief vocalize/range check
  • Singing a provided excerpt, which will be provided when you schedule your vocal placement)
  • A brief conversation

To schedule a vocal placement, or for more information, please contact Brenda Justice, Coordinator of Choral Programs, at 330.535.8131 or by email at bjustice@akronsymphony.org.

Free professional development credit is available for members of the chorus who are also teachers.

Chris Albanese is director of the Akron Symphony Chorus, while Karen Ní Bhroin serves as assistant director.

Akron Symphony Chorus 


Laura Beth Arnott
Ann Barni
Michelle Bisconti
Elizabeth Brumbaugh
Julie Carlson
Karla Cummins
Sarah Dush
Susan Holbrook
Dawn Horner
Joan G. Houger
Nancy Irby
Brenda L. Justice
Louisa Kreider
Lisa Lazar
Rebecca Lieb
Christine Makosky
Megan Meyer
Maryann Nething
Rachel O’Connell
Mary Ellen Porcella
Diana Ray
Mary Anne Schmidt
Judith Schwager
Jane L. Schweitzer
Kelly Thy


Martha E. Banks
Barbara Bock
Carrie Chapman
Karen Dick
Lisa Donatelli
Natalie Gilbert
Karen Gracy
Janet Harrah Grafton
Theresia Hartz
Peggy Hogan
Beth Illes-Johnson
Lindsay Kean
Valentina LeHoty
Lindy Lincicome
Deborah Marine
Amy Greenberg McCormick
Natasha Mekler
Joan Niewierowski
Diane Reitz
Kathy Schaefer
Cindy Spenoso
Penny Thompson
Sylvia Thompson
Michelle Wagner
Debra Walton
Rae Welker
Barbara Winberg
Anita S. Young


George Gaiser
Sam Garner
Sean Gilbow
William Hartz
Ralph Heimburger
Arne Hosbach
Steve Lord
Paul Martucci
William Smith
Fan Yang
Michael Yeager


Robert Balli
John T. Burkley
Leigh Conti
Eugene Fubler
Joseph A. Gardner
Christopher Godard
Caleb Helgeson
Steve Hogan
Jack Jennemann
Kenneth Linscott
Joseph Palmiero
Henry J. Payden Jr.
Bob Peyak
Kurt Spenoso
Patrick Stromberg
Greg Taylor
Rich Weber

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