Vocal Ensembles

The College Choruses

Chamber Singers
Western Reserve Women's Chorus

Dawn Sonntag, Conductor

The College Choir performs music in a wide variety of styles, from Renaissance to Contemporary. Many works are performed unaccompanied and others with piano, organ or orchestral accompaniment. The Choir presents a concert each semester and sometimes performs off campus. In recent years, the group has performed works by Bach Beethoven, Brahms, Mozart, Rachmaninoff, Tchaikovsky, Debussy, Copland and many others. One recent concert featured international folk music sung in eight different languages and another featured international folk music sung in eight different languages and another featured a performance of Leonard Bernstein's Chichester Psalms. The choir provides a wide variety of musical experiences.

Western Reserve Women's Chorus: 




Men's Chorus

José Gotera, Conductor

The Hiram Men's Chorus is a college-community TTBB ensemble, open to students, faculty, staff and area residents regardless of gender. Members drive from Warren, Akron and Cleveland to participate. They sing a wide variety of repertoire, from folk music and spirituals to barbershop and classic popular song. They have premiered works of several area composers. The Men's Chorus appears both on and off campus.


Women's Chorus

Damaris Peters Pike, Conductor

Organized in 2005, the Hiram Women's Chorus is a college-community ensemble of 30-40 women who perform SSA arrangements and sometimes join the Men's Chorus for SATB selections. The group is open without audition to students, faculty, staff and women of all ages from nearby communities.


The Marcia Kenyon Bissell Opera/Musical Theatre Workshop

Dawn Sonntag, Conductor

2014 Marcia Kenyon Bissell Opera/Musical Theatre Workshop:   Verlorene Heimat - composed and directed by Dawn Sonntag


2013 Marcia Kenyon Bissell Opera/Musical Theatre Workshop:   an excerpt of Cavalliero Rusticana - directed by Jose Gotera


Each year, the workshop presents fully staged short operatic works and scenes from full-length operas and musical theatre, giving students a wide range of performances opportunities. Recent productions have included John Gay's Beggar's Opera, Purcell's Dido and Aeneas, Bernstein's Trouble in Tahiti, scenes from works by Puccini, Verdi, Bizet, Mozart, Gilbert and Sullivan and musical revues of composers Irving Berlin, Cole Porter, Richard Rodgers and George Gershwin.


Instrumental Ensembles

Wind Ensemble

Matthew Salvaggio, Conductor

The Hiram Wind Ensemble is the premier instrumental ensemble on campus. The group performs literature of a wide variety and skill level, including cornerstone works for band. Membership in the ensemble is open to all Hiram students (regardless of major), community members and advanced high school students. The wind ensemble performs one concert per semester, and also plays for graduation at the end of the year.  The Department of Music maintains an inventory of instruments for student use in the ensemble. A short audition is required at the beginning of the semester for chair placement.

Jazz Ensemble

Paul Ferguson, Conductor

The Jazz Ensemble performs one concert each semester. The preferred instrumentation is two alto saxophones, two tenor saxophones, one baritone saxophone, four trumpets, four trombones, piano, guitar, bass and drums. In addition to performing various styles of big band charts, individual solo opportunities exist and time is allocated for developing individual improvisational skills. The Jazz Ensemble provides students with an enjoyable and energetic musical experience.

Chamber Orchestra

Tim Staron, Conductor

The Chamber Orchestra showcases not only Hiram students but college faculty and friends as well, playing such composers as Bach, Beethoven, Copland, Mozart, Franck, Schubert, Verdi, and Vaughan Williams. The repertoire challenges the more experienced musicians yet allows those with less time to devote to their playing to contribute as well. The orchestra collaborates with other college ensembles, drawing wind, brass, and percussion players from the Concert Band and performing join concerts with the College Choir.


African Drum Ensemble

Olugbala Manns, Conductor

This Campus-community drum circle is open to Hiram students, faculty, staff and other residents of all ages. There are sections for both beginners and advanced players. The director is Cleveland percussionist Olugbala Manns. African drums are provided or players may bring their own. The ensemble performs each semester with the Jazz Ensemble and for other occasions.


Top O' the Hill

Top O' the Hill is an ensemble of music faculty and community members who play Irish traditional music. Students with skills in this area are invited to perform with the group each year. This is an unusual and popular group where faculty and students can make music together on an informal basis.

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Vocal Ensembles

  • Chamber Singers
  • Women's Chamber Singers
  • Men's Chorus
  • Women's Chorus
  • The Marcia Kenyon Bissell Opera/Musical Theatre Workshop

Instrumental Ensembles

  • Wind Ensemble
  • Jazz Ensembles
  • Chamber Orchestra
  • Recorder Ensemble
  • African Drum Ensemble
  • Top O' the Hill