Ken Hoover was born in Chicago, reared in Portsmouth, VA, and earned his BA in English with a minor in sociology at Richmond College, University of Richmond. He went on to Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest and from there to serve churches in Virginia. Beginning in 1970, he was involved in Clinical Pastoral Education, which brought him to Duke University Medical Center in Durham in 1971. Apart from a three-year stay in Sanford from 1972-75, he has lived in Durham since then. He is currently retired after thirty years as a substance abuse counselor.
The landmark event of his life was a 1950 trip with other members of his high school band to Richmond to hear Arturo Toscanini and the NBC Symphony Orchestra on their last nation-wide tour. The Maestro and the sounds he brought forth from the instruments on stage captivated him, and he has been an avid classical music buff ever since.
In college, he sang in Men's Glee Club and Chorus and played trombone in the school band and in a jazz ensemble. He sang for two years in Carl Fehr's "The Common Glory" choir in Williamsburg and in the Chorus of Alumni and Friends of the University of Richmond (CAFUR) with the Richmond Symphony under James Erb. Locally, he sang with the Choral Society of Durham under Larry Cook and Rodney Wynkoop.
Hoover studied music sporadically at University of Richmond and at UNC-Chapel Hill. He studied composition privately with Peter Klausmeyer. He has composed ten choral anthems and a number of service pieces, some performed widely. He is especially interested in choral music and opera and finds passion in all music. He says his favorite piece of music is the one he is listening to right now.