This preview has been provided by the Hickory Choral Society.

Hickory NC:  Hickory Choral Society welcomes Elena Sharkova to the podium as Guest Conductor for the upcoming Fall Concert.   First Baptist Church, 339 2nd Avenue NW in Hickory, hosts the concert at 3 pm on Sunday, October 18.

Born and trained in St. Petersburg, Russia, Elena Sharkova holds a graduate degree in conducting from the famed Rimski-Korsakov Conservatoire as well as a second graduate degree in conducting from Western Michigan University. Making her career in the U.S. since 1993, Elena dedicates her work to building communities through joyful and meaningful musicmaking and enjoys working with singing people of all ages. Recognized as an inspirational, versatile and passionate conductor and music educator, Ms. Sharkova has conducted professional, university, youth, and community choirs and orchestras in seventeen countries across three continents.

In her eighteenth year as Music Director of Symphony Silicon Valley Chorale in San Jose, California, Elena Sharkova has prepared and conducted the symphony chorus in over 50 major choral-orchestral works.  Also as Artistic Director of Cantabile Youth Singers of Silicon Valley since 2004, Ms. Sharkova oversees all educational and performance aspects of the program that now serves over 300 children ages 4 to 18, and also directs the top touring choir Vocalise.

One of the nation’s busiest choral clinicians and festival conductors, Elena Sharkova has conducted state, divisional, and national honor choirs for American Choral Directors Association, National Association of Music Educators, Organization of American Kodàly Educators, and Association for Music in International Schools. In February 2015, Ms. Shakova received one of the nation’s highest honors when she conducted the Junior High/Middle School Women’s Honor Choir at the 2015 ACDA National Convention in Salt Lake City.

As a soprano, Elena Sharkova has performed and recorded with Lege Artis, one of Russia’s finest professional choirs, and appears on five studio CDs on SonyClassical label.

Ms Sharkova’s presence here continues the tradition set by Hickory Choral Society to offer professionally respected choral conductors for the enjoyment of both our singers and our faithful patrons.

The fall program consists of works by British composers with the centerpiece the Dona Nobis Pacem by Ralph Vaughan Williams.  Thank you to the Kenneth K. and Suzanne G. Millholland Endownment for their generous sponsorship of this concert and their continued support of the arts in this community.

Since the spring of 1978, the Hickory Choral Society has continued to delight audiences with excellent choral music literature. Each year, the Hickory Choral Society provides local music lovers with a series of exciting and well-attended concerts.  The all-volunteer group, made up of 110 singers from Catawba and surrounding counties, is well known throughout North Carolina for its annual Christmas Concerts at Corinth Reformed Church in Hickory.  They have also been noted for numerous concerts, including performances with the North Carolina Symphony; a concert at Lincoln Center in New York; and a trip that included concerts in Portsmouth and London, England and Edinburgh, Scotland.  The 2003 Christmas Concert was broadcast live statewide over UNC-TV and has continued to be rebroadcast.  In May 2010 the Hickory Choral Society was honored to be part of the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC.  In January 2013 they were pleased to be included in the Carnegie Hall, NYC performance of A Great and Glorious Victory, by British composer/conductor Jonathon Willcocks.  They returned to Carnegie Hall in January 2014 for the world premiere of a work they had commissioned in honor of their 35th Anniversary, Requiem for the Living by Dan Forrest – a noted composer, pianist, and music editor.

The Fall Concert is free and open to the public. For membership and other information, call the Hickory Choral Society office at 828-322-2210.  A special invitation is extended to the public to attend the Fall Concert – a tradition with audiences in the Catawba Valley. This concert offers something for everyone.  The Hickory Choral Society is a funded affiliate of the United Arts Council of Catawba County.