Music Department supports new choir co-founded by professor

The Brenau University Music Department is supporting a new local choir that was co-founded by Ashley Conway, WC ’08, Brenau choral director and music education coordinator.

Lux will perform its first concert on Saturday, July 30, at 7:30 p.m. in Brenau’s Hosch Theatre. The concert is free and open to the public. The theme is Lux: Light in the Darkness and features music related to light and similar ideas.

Conway and her friend, Emily Allison, who is the choir director at Cherokee Bluff Middle School, founded Lux — named after the Latin word for light — because there wasn’t a choir that performed professional-level treble music closer to Gainesville.

“We have both been teaching choirs since 2008 and have a passion for treble choral music, so it was a great fit for us both,” said Conway, who also co-conducts the choir.

Ashley Conway and Emily Allison
Ashley Conway and Emily Allison

In addition to hosting this week’s performance, Brenau supported Lux with rehearsal space.

“The Department of Music is proud to be able to offer these kinds of spaces for local music groups, when possible,” Conway said. “Also, Dr. Barbara Steinhaus, the chair of the music department, was thrilled to hear about the beginning of the ensemble and suggested some Brenau alumni she thought would want to audition.”

Along with Conway, other Brenau alumni in the choir include Julie Brady, WC ’20, Jenna Coon, WC ’11, Arielle Crumley, WC ’14, Glenda Franklin, WC ’75, and Arabia Jones, WC ’20. Conway said the group is open to treble singers from all over the region, including many from other area colleges and universities.

Instead of weekly rehearsals, Conway said the singers learn the music on their own and meet up at a retreat to polish their performance as a group. Brenau hosted the choir’s retreat, July 22-23, on the historic Gainesville campus.

Coon said she was looking forward to performing with other music educators, her former choir mates, composers and friends.

“The music Emily and Ashley have selected for Lux is all about shining a light through darkness,” Coon said. “I think we can all relate to feeling some anxiousness and helplessness in the last couple of years. The music we get to sing is a reminder that there is still light in the world. As singers in this choir, we have the opportunity to share it.”

Other concerts are scheduled throughout the fall, with the next concert at Young Harris College on Sunday, Oct. 2, at 3 p.m. A full list of concerts, which are free and open to the public, can be found here.