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President of the Jury
The 2023-24 season is Anton Armstrong’s 34th year as Conductor of the St. Olaf
Choir, marking him as the longest tenured conductor in the ensemble’s storied 112
year history. He is the Harry R. and Thora H. Tosdal Professor of Music at St.
Olaf College, becoming the fourth conductor of the St. Olaf Choir in 1990 after ten
years in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he served on the faculty of Calvin University
and led the Calvin Alumni Choir, Calvin Campus Choir, the Grand Rapids Symphony
Chorus and the St. Cecilia Youth Chorale. He is a graduate of St. Olaf College and
earned advanced degrees at the University of Illinois (MM) and Michigan State
University (DMA). He is editor of a multicultural choral series for Earthsongs
Publications and co-editor (with John Ferguson) of the revised St. Olaf Choral Series
for Augsburg Fortress Publishers. In June 1998, he began his tenure as founding
conductor of the Oregon Bach Festival Stangeland Family Youth Choral Academy. Dr.
Armstrong currently serves as Chair of the National Board of Chorus America and has
returned to serve on the National Board of The Choristers Guild.
Maria Emma Meligopoulou
Dr. Maria Emma Meligopoulou is Assistant Professor of Choral Conducting in
Macedonia University of Thessaloniki School of Music Science & Art (Greece),
where she teaches choral conducting techniques and directs the University
choirs. She also teaches in the master’s program of Macedonia University and
is visiting Professor at Aegean University. She holds a Master Degree in Choral
Conducting from Boston University CFA and a PhD and a Post-Doctoral Diploma
in Choral Conducting and Choral Pedagogy from Ionian University SFA. She also
holds a Bachelor Degree in Law, from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki. In
1992 she founded and directs the SS. Cyril & Methodios Choir of Thessaloniki,
the largest choral organization in Nor thern Greece, which cerebrated its 30th
anniversary in 2022 with over 250 singers at the ages of 6 – 25 years. She
has performed numerous concer ts in Greece, Europe, Asia, Africa and America
(USA, Canada) and is recipient of many international distinctions as choral
conductor. Dr. Meligopoulou is International lecturer on demand, adjudicator
and guest conductor in Greek and International festivals (China, USA, Canada,
Italy, Germany, Turkey, South Africa, Indonesia, Israel etc).
Yu-Chung Johnny Ku
Dr. Yu-Chung Johnny Ku is the Music Director of Taipei Philharmonic Chorus, Taipei Philharmonic Chamber Choir, and the Taipei International Choral Festival and Competition. He is also an assistant professor in the National Taiwan University of Arts, a board member of Taiwan Choral Association, a member of the World Choral Council, IFCM Asia-Pacific working committee, and a founding director of the Asian Choral Association. Dr. Ku is an active conductor working with choirs, orchestras, operas, and musical theaters. He has conducted concerts, masterclasses, workshops, and lectures in more than 20 countries, including Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Hungary, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, South-Korea, Russia, USA… etc. He also serves as the Chorus Master for more than 50 operas and choral-symphonic productions. In addition, he serves as an adjudicator in international competitions, such as the World Choir Games, World Choral Festival, among several others. Dr. Yu-Chung Johnny Ku received his D.M.A. from the College-Conservatory of Music in University of Cincinnati, and holds a master degree from Temple University.
Dr. Chin-Seop Yeom graduated from the Seoul National University of Music and received his Master of Music in Choral Conducting from the University of Hartford and earned a doctoral degree in choral conducting from Arizona State University. After returning to Korea, he served as artistic director of the National Choir and director of the Seoul City Choir.
He toured with the National Choir to New York, Los Angeles, Cicago, Houston, and Washington, D.C. in the United States; Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal in Canada; Tokyo, Osaka, and Nigata in Japan; Vladivostok in Russia; Amsterdam, London, and Paris in Europe; and Tanjin, Tsingtao, and Macao in China, receiving many favorable reviews from the media in each city. He has been invited as a judge and lecturer at many choral competitions and seminars, including the Busan Choral Festival and Competition and the Qingdao International Choral Festival in China. He has also appeared as a regular guest on broadcasting networks such as Voice of America in the United States, as well as KBS, MBC, and CBS in South Korea. After serving as a professor at Baekseok University for over a decade, he retired and is currently serving as a director of the Korean Choral Federation, a director of the Busan Choral Festival and Competition, and a visiting professor at China's Sichuan University.
Dr. Shin-Hwa Park
Dr. Shin-Hwa Park is professor emeritus of the College of Music at Ewha Womans University, president of Korea Church Music Association, president emeritus of the KFCM, Director of Ewha Chamber Choir, member of World Choir Council, and broadcasting host of FEBC FM. He also conducts Young-Nak Presbyterian Church Choir, which consists of 150 members. He was the conductor of Ansna City Choir for 25 years. Dr. Park received his D.M.A in Choral Literature and Conducting from University of Colorado at Boulder.
Since 1996, his choirs have produced 113 CDs. He is often invited to judge for choral competitions, and he became the artistic director of World Choir Game in 2023. In 2019, Ansan City Choir performed at the ACDA National Conference held in Kansas City. Ansan City Choir has also performed at the 6th, 10th, and 11th World Symposium on Choral Music. Dr. Park was awarded the 2020 Korean Christian Arts Award and received the grand prize at the 35th Korea Artistic & Cultural Awards(Music) for the contribution to Korean choral music in 2022. He received the 2021 University of Colorado Distinguished Choral Alumnus Award and Yonsei University Alumni Award in 2023.