Conductor William Skoog Hails “Transformational” Experience Performing in Carnegie Hall
William Skoog serves as professor and chair at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee. Previously he taught at Bowling Green State University; Indiana/Purdue University, Fort Wayne, Indiana; and Southwestern Michigan College, Dowagiac, Michigan. He has been published in Choral Journal and Music Educators Journal. Mr. Skoog has conducted the Memphis Symphony Orchestra, Toledo Symphony (Ohio), Fort Wayne Philharmonic Orchestra (Indiana), Elkhart Symphony (Indiana), Prague Radio Symphony, and the Moravian Symphony and has led performances at international choral festivals in Lucerne, Rome, and Prague, and is due to conduct the Dublin Choral Festival in 2018. As a singer Mr. Skoog participated in the Robert Shaw Festival and Institute Singers under Robert Shaw, also performing with Sir Neville Marriner, André Previn, and Peter Schreier at Carnegie Hall. We asked him to share a little about his extensive experience, both as a conductor and a performer, in Carnegie Hall and with MidAmerica Productions:
MAP: How did you hear about MidAmerica Productions?
William: I brought choirs to MidAmerica at Carnegie in the early days during the 80s but had not been back with them since. Peter Tiboris had been reaching out to me in recent years to re-connect, and I decided it was time to accept this invitation. I’m glad I did.
MAP: Why do you think the MidAmerica experience is important?
William: It provides a large number of people -- of all generations and backgrounds -- to foster the choral art; to perform great works in great cities and world-class concert halls, with excellence as a constant goal. This helps nurture the arts in our country -- which is a crucial endeavor.
MAP: What was the main musical experience that your performers took away from their residency in NYC which culminated in their Carnegie Hall performance?
William: As I brought the better part of two choirs, and some additional folks who had sung with me before, and two choirs directed by former students, the combination choir proved to work together cohesively, and collectively we all had a wonderful artistic experience. The community forged was a superb one, and the music (artistry) benefitted from this. Our folks felt this; the collective energy and passion was palpable.
MAP: As music director, what was the most memorable personal experience you took away after this residency?
William: I served as music director and also guest conductor for this; as music director, I was extremely pleased in the end result, and the process, that the music was served well, and the singers I brought felt that as well. It was top notch. As a conductor, the artistic experience was beyond satisfying; the orchestra was attentive and played beautifully, the singers came together as a cohesive unit, and the audience showed their appreciation with an extended, standing ovation. The piece of music was transcendent, and came off as such; the experience was transformational for our people and for myself.
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Over the past 34 years, MidAmerica Productions has produced over 1300 concerts in Carnegie Hall and at historic halls all over the world. To have your ensemble perform in Carnegie Hall or internationally, call us at 212-239-0205 or visit us at www.midamerica-music.com.