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The New England
Youth Ensemble
IAMA Celebrates 25
Years
The Wedgwood Trio
The Liberty Singers
Winter/Spring 2009
President’s Message
Elsie Landon Buck
With this issue we celebrate the 25th
anniversary of the International Adventist
Musicians Association. For a quarter of
a century IAMA has served as a voice for
Adventist music, uniting our musicians
around the world and sharing news, events,
and the accomplishments of music groups
and fellow members. In doing that we have
also become better acquainted with each
other and become more aware of what we are
doing collectively as Adventist musicians.
It has been our privilege to meet music
professors and students through the printed
pages in our publications, NOTES being the
most recent. During these years we have
not only become acquainted with the work
presently being done in our school music
programs throughout our country and abroad
but have also gained a perspective about
how the music programs at our colleges
and universities started and evolved to the
present.
It is my special privilege at this time
to thank one amongst us who has worked
untiringly for more than 25 years in making
IAMA a reality. We stop to thank our editor,
Professor Dan Shultz, for the outstanding
contribution he has made in expanding the
scope of IAMA throughout all this time. We
owe him our deepest gratitude for bringing
the Adventist world of music together through
his work with Notes and, more recently,
with our website and online services.
As I end my tenure as president, I would
like to take this opportunity to express my
sincere respect and appreciation for others
who have been involved in IAMA and to you
as members for your support with dues and
contributions. As you have learned from our
publications, we have many wonderful men
and women in music who teach, perform, and
lead musical organizations around the world. I
am grateful for the high standards they uphold
and the influence they have had in presenting
the very best in musical outreach.
In a very special way I want to
congratulate the School of Music at Southern
Adventist University as it becomes an allSteinway school. It joins Canadian University
College and Pacific Union College as the
most recent of Adventist schools to upgrade
its keyboard resources. These are expensive
but necessary improvements to assure that
our students have the very best in instruments
on which to practice and present great music.
As you will read in this issue of Notes,
Southern is hoping to accomplish this goal in
two more years.
Many years ago when I was a student at
what was then Southern Junior College, now
President’s Message
The New England Youth Ensemble
IAMA Celebrates 25 Years
The Wedgwood Trio
CONTENTS
2
3
8
12
Southern Adventist University, I was totally
committed to mastering the piano, studying
under the inspiring and skilled direction of
Professor Harold A. Miller. Because of his high
standards and example, music was an integral
and respected part of student life and church
worship. The piano was the only keyboard
instrument in church at that time, and Professor
Miller’s playing of hymns with great beauty
and sensitivity was always a memorable
experience. His hymn “Like Jesus” (492 in our
hymnal) inspires and moves the heart.
In this issue of NOTES it is our
privilege to become acquainted with
dedicated musicians who came together
to establish musical groups of differing
sizes and types that have been a blessing
and inspiration to many. Whether it
be the instrumental music of the New
England Youth Ensemble or the singing
of the Wedgwood Trio, each has provided
music that speaks to persons with varied
backgrounds and life experiences.
Whether we perform or listen, the
inspiration provided by voice or instrument
can satisfy the heart and soul. For all of you
who have given and continue to give us your
best we offer our sincere and deep gratitude.
My prayer is that God will continue to be with
us all as we honor him with His gift of music.
Elsie L. Buck
Let the word of Christ dwell in you
richly . . . as you sing psalms, hymns and
spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts
to God.
Colossians 3:16
The Liberty Singers
News
Personal Notes
Photo Gallery
19
22
24
26
IAMA LOGO
IAMA’s logo, created in a few seconds with the quick movements of a writer’s quill, is a
cluster of notes from Beethoven’s sketchings for his Ninth Symphony.
The New England Youth Ensemble and Columbia Union College Columbia Chorale perform under the direction of Virginia-Gene
Rittenhouse at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in a 2003 concert celebrating the college’s centennial.
The New England Youth
Ensemble
Since its founding forty years ago, the New England Youth Ensemble has become a household name in
Adventist churches, an acclaimed ensemble both here and abroad. It has traveled more widely than any other
Adventist music group, taking countless tours in the U.S. and throughout the world. Under its professional name,
the New England Symphonic Ensemble, it is a resident orchestra at Carnegie Hall, where it has performed more
frequently than any other orchestra in the country.
T
he ongoing
story of the New
England Youth
Ensemble, now
in existence for
forty years, is a one of record-setting
accomplishments and numerous
accolades. Its successes can be
attributed to its director, Virginia-Gene
Rittenhouse, accomplished violinist
and pianist, an unstoppable woman
with a dream and the determination to
prevail, whatever the cost.
Hundreds of students have played
in the ensemble and sung in choirs
assisting it, performing in dozens of
countries around the world. Their work
and that of Rittenhouse and the choirs’
directors have inspired and uplifted
numberless persons in enthusiastic and
grateful audiences everywhere.
T
outreach center in that city, before
quartered in a woefully inadequate
he NEYE began when
hostel. During that time, their interpreter
Rittenhouse formed a small crossing the channel into France.
They
next
traveled
to
the
Ecoles
and tour guide, who had an antipathy
ensemble of her students
d’Americaine
de
Fontainebleau
towards Christians and a preference for
in South Lancaster, Massachusetts, and
outside Paris, where they gave a
jazz, prevented them from doing any
started performing locally. Positive
concert
for
world-famous
composer
performing.
reactions to these appearances led to
and
teacher
Nadia
Boulanger
and
At the end of the week, Rittenhouse
an expanded group and, in December
other teachers and students at the
courageously approached officials in
1969, participation in a Christmas
music school. This discerning group’s
what was at that time a communist
program at the First Unitarian Church
enthusiastic
response
during
and
after
country and requested a new tour guide.
in nearby Northboro, Massachusetts.
Those associated with the program
In that same month, they also
hastened to rectify the situation.
played for a Kiwanis Luncheon in
They arranged for vastly improved
Worcester, at the request of that
lodging and assigned two new
community’s orchestra director.
interpreters and guides, who
It was during this time that the
scheduled seventeen memorable
group became known as the New
concerts for the group in the
England Youth Ensemble.
remaining two weeks of the tour.
In 1970, they played at the
By the time they left, they had had
General Conference Session in
an enormous impact on thousands
Atlantic City, New Jersey. This
and were told that a request had
exposure led to an invitation for
The earliest known photograph of the NEYE (1970)
already been lodged for them to
them to play at the All-European
their
performance
was
affirmation
at
return
to Poland.
Youth Congress in Edinburgh,
the
highest
level,
an
exciting
end
to
Scotland, in July 1973.
this first venture abroad.1
hen they returned
This was the first international
a year later,
trip for the ensemble, which now
eginning
in
1974,
the
assisted by a choral
numbered 25 students, including the
ensemble enjoyed
group conducted by Francisco de
four children in the Taylor Family
the sponsorship of
Araujo, they were placed under the
String quartet. After a five-day en2
Friendship
Ambassadors
,
a
cultural
oversight of the two guides who had
route stop in Iceland, where they
exchange
program
underwritten
by
the
salvaged the previous year’s trip.
played four concerts and did extensive
Reader’s Digest and its former editor,
Midway through this tour, they spent
sightseeing, they traveled
Harry
Morgan.
Their
first
trip
to
Europe
four days in Vienna sightseeing and
on to Scotland.
playing during the General
The ensemble played
Conference Session being
an important role in
held in that city.
the Congress, held in
They returned to Poland
Edinburgh’s famous Usher
where, by coincidence,
Hall. They opened the event
U.S. President Gerald
with the Trumpet Tune and
Ford and his wife were
Air, a rousing prelude that
visiting while attending
was followed by the entry
the Helsinki Conference
of Scottish bagpipers and
in Finland. Last minute
flag-bearing delegates. They
arrangements were made
performed ten more times
for the ensemble and choir
President Gerald Ford publicly thanks the NEYE and choir at the end
during the four-day event and
of its 1975 performance in Poland at the Vilanow Palace.
to perform following the
closed it with a final concert.
in
this
program
was
a
tour
to
Poland
state
dinner
hosted by the president for
The ensemble then had a brief two-day
that year. It began inauspiciously when the premier of Poland. The program
stop in London, where they played in
during their first week there they were
was well received and as the final
the New Gallery Center, an Adventist
W
B
number, America the Beautiful ended,
the Americans, who had literally been
moved to tears, and others in the
audience responded with emotional
and heartfelt applause.
Following the concert, President
Ford on his own returned to the site
of the performance, where breakdown
of the setup was occurring, wanting
to personally thank the members for
their concert. Once the group had
reassembled, he stood in its midst
and praised them for their music and
representation of
America’s youth, finally
exiting with a farewell.
They received a thankyou letter from him a
few weeks later.
On those tours they performed in world
famous venues, including Notre Dame
and Chartres cathedrals in France; the
Dom in Salzburg and the Karlskirche in
Vienna; San Marco in Venice; as well as
St. Martin-in-the-Fields and cathedrals
at York, Leeds, and St. Giles in Great
Britain.
They also traveled extensively in
the U.S., playing in such nationally
noted places as the Riverside, St
Patrick’s, and St. Bartholomew’s
churches in New York City and the
I
countries in Europe including those in
Scandinavia. They have also traveled
to China and multiple times to South
Africa and Australia and other islands in
the Pacific.3 And the tradition of playing
at the church’s General Conference
Sessions, begun in 1970, has continued
without break to the present.
Rittenhouse, in an interview with
Lincoln Steed in 2001, when asked
about any incident that stood out in her
memory after all her years of traveling,
recalled a concert given in a stadium
at St. Petersburg in
1997. The response of
the crowd of 15,000
during and following
the concert, which
was given as part of
an evangelistic series,
moved her deeply.
While there, she and the
ensemble witnessed the
baptisms of hundreds of
persons.4
n the
decade
following
these initial forays
into Europe, the
Ensemble returned in
eginning
1976, one of the first
in 1975,
two groups chosen
when
to enter Russia under
Araujo and the Takoma
the sponsorship
Chorale under his
of Friendship
direction had joined
Ambassadors.
A 1983 performance of the NEYE in St. Bartholomew’s Church
the ensemble for its
Following five days in
second tour to Poland, the NEYE
the Warsaw, Poland, area, they entered Crystal Cathedral in Garden Grove,
California. They have since performed began traveling with choirs on some of
Russia, where they performed
numerous times in the latter’s Sunday
their tours. One of these in the 1970s
for twelve days. They ended the tour
morning telecast of the Hour of Power. included James Bingham’s symphonic
with a concert in historic Leningrad
choir from Kingsway College. The
and then had an impromptu visit at the
he pace established in that
directors enjoyed the many experiences
Tchaikovsky Conservatory of Music.
first decade of travel that
of working together that followed in that
The Associated Press spread the word
had started with the trip to
decade, and in 1985, when Bingham
about this groundbreaking trip and its
Scotland in 1973 has continued now
became chair of the music program and
successes; Radio Moscow released
for over two more decades and into a
choir director at Atlantic Union College,
tapes of the group’s concerts for
new century. In that time, in addition
where Rittenhouse and the NEYE
broadcast across the country.
to crisscrossing the U.S. numerous
were based, they began performing and
In those ten years, the ensemble
times and performing several times in
touring together on a regular basis.5
toured to the Caribbean several times
In 1988, when Bingham’s
and to Canada, Austria, Romania, Israel, Canada, the ensemble and assisting
Collegiate Choir was invited to
Hungary, France, and other countries in choirs have returned to the Middle East
and Poland, Russia, England, and other
perform in Carnegie Hall as part of the
Europe, some of them multiple times.
B
T
Mid-America Productions program,
Rittenhouse suggested they include
the NEYE as the assisting orchestra.
The reception for that concert in May
1988 led to an invitation for a return
engagement in November.
The second concert featured violin
soloist Lyndon Taylor and the choral
music of noted English composer
John Rutter, who prepared the choir
and orchestra for the performance.
The success of that venture led to
an ongoing collaboration with the
composer in subsequent concerts at
Carnegie Hall and other venues as
well as a concert tour in South Africa.6
I
T
he use of soloists with the
NEYE is a longstanding
tradition that started in its
earliest concerts. Sylvia Twine is but
one example of recent vocal soloists
that included Alex Henderson, a tenor
who appeared with the orchestra more
than any other.
Instrumental soloists are most
often students from within the group.
Once they have demonstrated they are
ready, they must be prepared to play
on short notice at any time on a tour,
called upon at random by Rittenhouse,
sometimes even in the middle of a
concert. Many well-known Adventist
musicians have started or were given
a boost in their career as soloists while
associated with the ensemble.
especially when one of them is featured
as a soloist. The constant touring and
arduous schedules have led to rules and
protocols of the road, one of which is
that complaining is not an option.
There are worships on a regular
basis, and prayer circles when they are
faced with seemingly insurmountable
challenges. Friday Night Prayer
Fellowships, when possible, help
create a spiritual and caring dynamic
within the group.
Since some of the touring occurs in
the school year and is in conflict with
school schedules, study times are set
aside on the bus as it travels between
concerts. Members of the Ensemble
have been able to do well in their studies
in spite of absences from classes.
n 1994, Rittenhouse
and Bingham accepted
positions at
Columbia Union College
n March 2004,
in the Washington, D.C.,
Bingham
area. Rittenhouse and
conducted
the relocated NEYE now
the world premier of The
joined with Bingham’s
Vision of the Apocalypse,
CUC choral groups to
an oratorio by Rittenhouse,
continue touring and
in Carnegie Hall. She
performing concerts.7
narrated the presentation, a
In May 2003, they
dramatization of the Great
presented a gala concert
Controversy between good
at the John F. Kennedy
and evil as portrayed in
Center for the Performing
Adventist doctrine, assisted
Arts featuring Rutter and
Virginia-Gene Rittenhouse’s The Vision of the Apocalypse, in its
by the New England
premier at Carnegie Hall in March 2004
his music. In this program,
Symphonic Ensemble
which launched a two-year
(professional branch of the NEYE), the
Violinists Lyndon Taylor, Carla
celebration of the school’s centennial,
CUC Columbia Collegiate Chorale,
Trynchuk, Lynelle Smith, Dawn
Rittenhouse conducted Mozart’s
conducted by Bingham, and the Atlantic
Harmes, Naomi Burns Delafield, and
Die Zauberflote Overture to open
Union College Pro-Arts International
Preston Hawes have all served as both
the concert and Bingham began the
concertmaster and soloists. Other soloists Choir, conducted by Araujo. The
second half by conducting Vaughan
capacity audience responded with an
have included violists Lucy Taylor and
William’s Serenade to Music. Guest
enthusiastic and prolonged standing
Laurie Redmer (Minner) and pianists
conductor Rutter conducted two of his
ovation at the end of this Mid-America
Eileen Hutchins and Jacquie Schafer
well-known and popular works, the
(Zuill), the latter also serving as principal Productions sponsored concert, the
Gloria and Requiem, and closed the
seventeenth to be given in Carnegie Hall
player in the second violin section.9
program with Feel the Spirit, a recently
that year by a CUC music group.10
composed medley of African-American
t is a tradition in the
spirituals featuring the choir and
ittenhouse, born in
Ensemble that members
orchestra and soloist mezzo-soprano
Canada, spent her
of the group support
Sylvia Twine. The concert ended with
childhood in South
and
affirm
each
other
at
all
times,
a three-minute standing ovation.8
Africa, where her father, George E.
I
I
R
Shankel, was president of Helderberg
Mid-America Productions. Preston
College. She was a performing and
Hawes, who serves as concertmaster
composing prodigy who, at age ten,
and associate conductor, assists
debuted in a network broadcast,
Rittenhouse in her work with that
performing her own compositions. At
group.13 The NEYE under Rittenhouse
age thirteen she won a scholarship for
and the Columbia Collegiate Chorale
study at the University of South Africa continue to tour internationally and in
on both piano and violin.
the U.S., taking two trips a year, with
She started her
Bingham serving as the
career at Walla Walla
primary conductor.
College, now university,
Now that the
in the fall of 1945, a year
NEYE is in its fortieth
after completing a music
year, the question,
degree at the University
“How much longer will
of Washington. She
the NEYE continue?”
taught for one year,
is heard with increasing
before going to AUC,
frequency. The answer
where she taught violin
lies with Rittenhouse,
and piano until the early
who seemingly unfazed
1950s. During that
by the passage of time,
Virginia-Gene Rittenhouse
time she completed an
would probably respond
M.Mus. at Boston University and
in amused wonderment with one of
married Harvey Rittenhouse, a surgeon her own, “Why do you ask?”
and musician. She completed a DMA
Dan Shultz
at Peabody Conservatory in 1963.
The Rittenhouses then worked in
Factual information about the NEYE, its beginnings, travels in its
twenty years, and the dynamic and practices within the ensemble,
Jamaica from 1954-56 and also in 1961, first
is based on information provided in Encore, The Story of the New
England Youth Ensemble, Dorothy Minchin-Comm and Virginia-Gene
where he practiced medicine and she
Rittenhouse, Pacific Press Publishing Association, 1988.
This program, originally the Ambassadors for Friendship, now the
taught music. They returned to live in the Friendship
Ambassadors Foundation, started in 1973. The NEYE was
one of the first ensembles chosen to participate in a program, which in
community near AUC in 1964 and, five
subsequent years has sent hundreds of ensembles overseas, including a
years later, she started the Ensemble.11
number of SDA school groups.
Additional sources for this listing of countries include an article in
The oratorio performed at
Dialogue by Lincoln Steed, “Virginia-Gene Rittenhouse: Dialogue
with a musician with an up-tempo vision for Adventist education,”
Carnegie Hall was a refined and
14(3), 20,21, 2002; Articles in 2003 and 2004 IAMA Notes, fully listed
in endnotes 6 and 9.
expanded version of a previous
Steed, article mentioned in endnote 3.
Dan Shutz, “Music at Atlantic Union College,” IAMA Notes, Winter/
oratorio, The Song of the Redeemed,
Spring 2003, 16.
Steed, article mentioned in endnote 3; Music groups return from
that she had premiered in 1946, at
Carnegie Hall, CUC website, 19 April 2005; see also endnote 7.
the end of her year at WWC. She
Interviews: James Bingham and Virginia Gene Rittenhouse,
September 2003 and an email exchange with Bingham in March 2009.
had started writing portions of it at
Dan Shultz, “Columbia Union College at Kennedy Center,” IAMA
Notes, Summer/Autumn 2003, 3-5.
age twelve, inspired by reading the
Biographies for these persons available at www.iamaonline.com
News note in IAMA Notes, Summer/Autumn 2004, 20.
book of Revelation.12 The destruction
Rittenhouse biography is provided at www.iamaonline.com.
“Oratorio Choir, Orchestra, Premier Song of the Redeemed, The
of the Twin Towers in New York on
Collegian, Walla Walla campus newspaper, 2 May 1946; Billie Jean
Fate,
Musically Speaking column, The Collegian, 9 May 1945.
September 11, 2001, had inspired her
Email exchange with Preston Hawes in autumn 2008 and
to complete a final version of this
information in the resulting IAMA biography.
evolving, lifelong work in progress.
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
T
he New England
Symphonic Ensemble is
now the official orchestrain-residence at Carnegie Hall for
Columbia Union College
Choral Program
James Bingham established the
Columbia Collegiate Chorale, one of two
choirs at Columbia Union College, when
he became chair of the music department
and director of choral activities at the
school in 1994. Under his leadership,
both the Chorale and Pro Musica, a choir
founded in 1967 by the late Paul Hill,
have gained national and international
acclaim for the quality of their work.
They have sung at the John F. Kennedy
Center for the Performing Arts and
the National Gallery in Washington,
D.C. and performed numerous times in
Carnegie Hall and other notable venues
across the country and around the world.
Both choirs have toured extensively
in the U.S. and internationally on their
own, as well as in partnership with the
New England Youth Ensemble and
its professional counterpart the New
England Symphonic Ensemble. They
have sung in famous concert halls and
cathedrals in every region of the world,
and on six continents, including Europe,
Asia, Africa, North and South America,
and Australia, Bingham’s native country.
Among the many events they have
been invited to participate in was the
1995 Jerash International Festival in
Jordan, where the Chorale and the NESE
performed under the sponsorship of
Queen Noor, as well as numerous concerts
featuring the music of and conducted by
noted composer John Rutter.
Bingham began recording his
choirs while at Atlantic Union College
and has continued this project at CUC.
Recent recordings include the Louis
Vierne Messe Solennelle in c minor and
Bingham’s Requiem.
Biographies for the following persons associated with the NEYE can be found at www.iamaonline.com
Francisco J. de Araujo
James Bingham
Rachelle Berthelsen Davis
Naomi Burns Delafield
Preston Hawes
Eileen Hutchins
Jaime Jorge
Earl Raney
Laurie Redmer Minner
Virginia-Gene Rittenhouse
Jacquie Schafer Zuill
Win Osborn Shankel
Elaine Myers Taylor
Leonard Morris Taylor
Lyndon Johnston Taylor
Lucille Taylor
Morris Taylor
Carla Trynchuk
Jason Wells
IAMA Celebrates
25 Years!
For the past quarter-century, the International Adventist Musicians Association has worked to create a more
unified and collective identity among Seventh-day Adventists musicians and an increased awareness of what we
have been doing as a group at all levels and in all areas. As we celebrate this significant milestone, it is important
to review how we have evolved, celebrate what our organization has accomplished, and talk about the future.
T
wenty-five years ago,
in the spring of 1984,
IAMA officially was
born with the election
of its first officers. That summer they
met at Andrews University, where they
enthusiastically
planned for
IAMA’s future
and voted to
produce its first
magazines. Hans
Jorgen Holman,
an exacting and
scholarly music
history professor
at AU, eagerly
started to prepare
a professional
magazine, The
IAMA Journal,
while at the same time, another
group began to prepare Newsletters,
a magazine that would share news
and ideas for specific areas of music
endeavor.
The release of both magazines in
the spring of 1985 became the first
tangible evidence that IAMA had
become a reality. A quarter century, 67
issues of magazines and newsletters,
and nearly 300 articles later, its
magazines have served as a place for
dialogue on music issues during a
time of rapid cultural changes, and a
record of what has been happening
in Adventist music and with its
musicians.
T
he idea for IAMA had
developed during efforts
by Dan Shultz to establish
an SDA band directors’
association in 1981 while he
was serving as music chair
at Walla Walla College, now
University, and directing
its concert bands. His
secretary, Julianne Fisher,
aware of this project,
remarked, “You really
should be doing this for all
aspects of Adventist music.”
That
observation led
to a shift in focus
from the band
to the larger challenge of
creating an organization for
all of Adventist music and
musicians. Accordingly, in
the fall of 1981, a proposal
for a more inclusive
Adventist music organization
was presented at a meeting
of SDA college and
university music department
chairs in Dallas, Texas.
They endorsed the idea and
established themselves as a consulting
group and steering committee. A
constitution was written, General
Conference endorsement was
obtained, potential members were
contacted, and, in the fall of 1982, in
Seattle, Washington, an action was
taken by the music chairs to establish
the International Adventist Musicians
Association.
T
he need for such a group
had been felt for years
and had, in fact, led to
the founding of the SDA Church
Musicians Guild in 1970. Since most
Adventist musicians are teachers in
the church’s schools and others are
not affiliated with the church, the
name was seen as being too narrow
by definition
and too focused
on music of the
church service.
Most viewed
themselves as
educators or
performers first,
and second, in
some instances, as
church musicians.
The formation
of the guild
had increased
interest, however,
in creating an organization that
would serve the broader needs of
all Adventist musicians. For years
there had been a felt need for an
organization that would help create a
higher level of unity within Adventist
musicians and an increased awareness
about what was happening in
Adventist music and with musicians
not directly affiliated with the church.
There was no way to share news about
what was happening in Adventist
musical circles and no neutral forum
in which differing views about music
issues could be discussed.
A
lthough IAMA was started as
an association organized into
eight divisions for specialized
areas of music such as choir, band,
orchestra, piano, and others, each with
its own set of officers, that model
never really flourished. Splitting
the members into small subgroups
dependent on officers who, because of
heavy teaching responsibilities, did not
have the time to make their divisions
function effectively proved to be
unworkable and led to their being
phased out in 1996.
A
magazine seemed the best
possible vehicle to accomplish
the goals of the organization
and hence the interest in publishing
those first issues as quickly as possible.
As the editors quickly discovered,
however, creating a magazine from
scratch can be a daunting undertaking.
Computer technology was
in its infancy and not easy to use.
Additionally, midway through
preparation of the IAMA Journal,
professor Holman had to withdraw
because of serious health problems.
Charles Hall, a teaching colleague
at AU who had earlier that spring
facilitated the printing of IAMA’s
Newsletters, completed production of
the Journal. For the next six years, one
professional magazine was produced
annually, supplemented by a bi-monthly
newsletter titled Notes, both produced
by IAMA president Dan Shultz.
I
n the fall of 1991, Shultz
presented a proposal for
a more attractive, single
publication that would combine the best
features of the professional publication
and the newsletters. He also asked that
a new person be chosen as president
of IAMA so that he would have more
time to develop the new magazine. The
board voted to endorse the changes.
Elsie Buck, music educator, was
elected president the following summer.
That fall, the first issue of a newly
formatted, reader-friendly magazine,
Notes, was released. This is the 42nd issue
in that new format, one that has been
modified and improved as preparation
and printing technologies changed.
Today’s two-color magazine with
its varied content and photographs is
the end result of twenty-five years of
experiments in format and content.
In that quarter century, revolutionary
advances in computer technology have
dramatically affected the quality of
the magazine and how it is produced.
O
ver the years special issues
have been devoted to a
number of topics. As readers
might expect, the most discussed subject
has been the changes happening in
worship music. Beginning in 1995, a
special issue that gave equal time to
both conservative and liberal sides of
the argument was printed, launching an
ongoing discussion that has continued to
the present. Over 20 articles have since
appeared on the subject, including a
special issue of Notes devoted to a lively
discussion of the music used at the 2000
General Conference session in Toronto.
O
ther special issues have
focused on SDA Music
in Brazil, hymnody in the
SDA church, careers in music, the
challenges of being a professional
musician and keeping the Sabbath,
organs in the Adventist church, and
music touring. In addition to the
articles, the magazine has provided
readers with information about SDA
music and musicians around the world,
news about significant happenings in
Adventist music, and how-to articles
for developing special programs.
Beginning in 2003, a series of
articles on how music started and
evolved in each of the Adventist
colleges and universities in North
America was started and has now been
completed. Additionally, overviews
for music at Avondale College in
Australia and the University of
Montemorelos in Mexico were also
included in this series.
I
n response to rapidly
evolving technologies that
developed in the 1990s,
the board in 2000 voted to create a
website, www.iamaonline.com, and
endorsed the idea of maintaining a
hotline for keeping IAMA members
informed. Both have been successful
ventures.
In addition to becoming a
repository for articles published in
its magazines, the website facilitated
another SDA music history project,
that of creating a biographical
10
resource about Adventist musicians.
Over 750 musicians and their
biographies are now available at the
site. The creation and preserving of
a history of SDA music in the 20th
century will likely be IAMA’s most
enduring legacy.
F
rom the beginning, IAMA
expenses required funds
beyond the income provided
by dues, even though its only costs
have been the printing and mailing of
its magazines. Editing and layout have
been contributed, with the typical issue
taking about 200 hours to prepare and
special issues requiring additional time.
Dues typically have covered about half
of the expense and the remainder has
been covered through contributions. In
the past seventeen years, over $76,000
has been contributed to IAMA, sixty
percent of that by one person.
B
ecause of the escalation
in printing and mailing
expenses, this issue of
Notes will be the last magazine
published by the association.
While this will be the end of this
defining aspect of IAMA activities,
the association will continue as an
online presence using its hotline as
the conduit for news and its website
as a repository for its ongoing
Adventist music history research.
Although IAMA’s role in the
future will admittedly be more
limited, it will still continue as the
only association devoted solely to
covering all aspects of music in
the Adventist church. Hopefully,
it can continue to foster a sense of
community and unity among those
who work to make music an effective
avenue for ministry in the work of the
Adventist church.
Elsie Landon Buck
International Adventist Musicians Association President
1982 - 2009
With the end of her term this
autumn, President Elsie Buck
will have given IAMA seventeen
years of enthusiastic and effective
leadership. In those years she has
worked tirelessly on behalf of our
association, informing church leaders
about our work, promoting it at
gatherings of musicians and nonmusicians alike, and maintaining
contact with the board. She and her
husband, Edwin, have been very
generous donors, providing funding
for the operation of IAMA when
normal sources of income were not
adequate.
Elsie’s concern about all things
musical as they relate to the church
has been evident in the over forty
President’s Messages she has penned
in Notes and in the articles she has
contributed.
In my work as editor of IAMA
publications, I have had countless
encouraging and informative calls
from her as I have prepared Notes
and met with the board when
she was unable to attend Annual
Meetings. Along the way I have
gotten to know her as a thoughtful
and informed person as we have
talked about not only music, but
theology, world events, politics, and
personal matters as well. She is a
dear and trusted friend.
On behalf of all of the IAMA
family, thank you, Elsie, for your
outstanding leadership and work on
our behalf. You will be missed!
Dan Shultz, Editor
11
The
Wedgwood
Trio
The Wedgwood Trio, gifted American folk singers from the South with their stringed instruments, experienced decidedly
mixed reactions within the Seventh-day Adventist church when they began performing in the 1960s. For a church
accustomed to congregational hymn singing and other traditional types of formal sacred music, the sound in the church
sanctuary of a male trio singing mountain-style folk music accompanied on guitar, string bass, and banjo was jarring.
While their music was viewed with alarm by many in the church, the youth, familiar with long-haired, poorly dressed
performers doing rock music focused on the baser aspects of life and folk singers singing angry protest songs, embraced
the well-dressed trio with its contemporary sound and wholesome music. From the perspective of nearly a half-century
later, The Wedgwood Trio, with its upbeat sound and mix of folk music, creative arrangements of traditional Christian
music, and original music, helped create a greater openness for newer forms of worship music in the Adventist church
while providing an attractive alternative for a generation that otherwise might have left the church.
T
he Wedgwood Trio
had its start when three
young American students
studying at Newbold
College in England
during the 1964-65 school year joined
forces to sing folk music and play
their instruments as a trio. While
they all had Southern roots and were
acquainted with one another, they had
not previously performed together. All
three had come from musical families
and had inherited a generous amount
of musical talent along with good
singing voices.1
B
ob Summerour, an
accomplished guitar and
banjo player, had a paternal
grandmother who had been one of
the first diploma graduates in music
from Southern Training School, later
Southern Missionary College and now
Southern Adventist University. She
returned to serve as its first teacher
with a music degree she had earned at
Washington Missionary College, now
Columbia Union College.2
His father was a physician
and a cellist and singer who loved
classical music. Bob learned to
play trumpet while young and made
his initial foray into playing folk
music with a banjo he purchased
in a pawnshop near Mount Vernon
Academy, where he was a student.
He practiced incessantly and by
the time he graduated had become
an accomplished performer on the
instrument and was playing in a folk
trio called The Sons of Thunder.
12
J
erry Hoyle, singer and string
bass player, had learned to play
the instrument at a youth camp
where he and Summerour sang and
introduced music they had arranged
to the campers at evening campfires.
Although fascinated with bluegrass
music from his earliest years, he was
trained in more traditional music on
piano and trumpet.
A shy child with a good singing
voice, Jerry was a reluctant though
popular soloist while very young.
His experience as a scuba diver had
led to an invitation to teach that skill
at the youth camp where he met and
worked with Summerour during
their academy years, assisting camp
director Bill Dopp. As Hoyle’s voice
matured, he was encouraged to use
it in the ministry, and following
graduation from Mount Pisgah
Academy in 1962, he enrolled as a
theology major at SMC.
D
on Vollmer, a gifted singer
who would learn guitar after
the trio was formed, had also
come from a musical family where
his father, a noted physician, and his
mother were excellent musicians, who
made music an important activity
in their home. His voice was an
inherited talent shared by others in
his larger family, including an aunt,
Dorothy Evans Ackerman, a wellknown Adventist singer in the South
and a voice teacher at SAU for over a
quarter of a century.3
He was a classmate of Hoyle at
Mount Pisgah Academy and was only a
casual acquaintance with Summerour,
having met him during visits to the
youth camp. When Vollmer enrolled
at Atlantic Union College following
graduation from MPA in 1962, he and
Hoyle kept in touch.
W
hen Summerour and Hoyle
sailed for England in
1964 for a year of study
at Newbold College, they planned on
continuing their musical collaboration
as a duo, with Hoyle playing string
bass and harmonica.4 Vollmer had
learned about the trip from Hoyle and
decided at the last minute to join them
and other friends he knew, secretly
gaining acceptance as a student, and
traveling to the school. A week after
classes started, he casually walked
into the cafeteria one afternoon during
mealtime, surprising all of his friends
who greeted him enthusiastically.
The three men started to sing
American folk music and arrangements
of spirituals and other religious music
to the delight of both students and
faculty at the college. It was at this
time that Vollmer, wanting to do more
than just sing, took a crash course in
playing the guitar from Summerour,
who, in addition to playing the banjo,
was also a skilled guitarist.
B
y the end of the first semester,
they had started to play offcampus, known as the Shady
Grove Singers, taken from the name of
their opening song at concerts. They
began playing at the New Gallery
Center, an Adventist evangelistic
venue in London, on a regular basis.
One of the goals of the center was to
present religion in a variety of settings
that would attract non-Adventists, a
strategy facilitated by the trio with its
folk music.
One of the programs presented
by the center, a variety show called
“The Best Saturday Night in Town,”
became a showplace where the trio,
which would engage in humorous
repartee and Southern style kidding
between numbers, became a highlight.
When the semester and their stay in
England ended, they were given the
“New Gallery Personality Award,”
an acknowledgement of the pivotal
role they had played in the center’s
programs.
Before the end of the end of the
semester they traveled to France where
they worked with Gisela Willy, a
visiting professor at Newbold, and her
French-singing choir, to record music
for use by the French Educational
Ministry and the French Voice of
Prophecy broadcast. They recorded
some Appalachian folk music and
also accompanied the choir with their
instruments on some of its numbers.
T
he return to the U.S. would
mean an end to the trio unless
Vollmer decided to transfer to
SMC from AUC. Following a summer
of extensive travel throughout Europe,
all three enrolled at SMC.
13
At this time they changed their
name to The Wedgwood Trio when it
was discovered that another group in
the South was using their first name.
Having just come from England, they
decided the name had a classy ring to
it and would suggest high quality folk
music.5
Word of their success in England
preceded them to the SMC campus
and when they played at the first
college program of the year, a
hootenanny, they were a hit with
the students. Although many of
the older generation were initially
unsure about them and their music,
Vollmer’s aunt, Dorothy Ackerman,
and Marvin Robertson, chair of the
music department, along with Jack
Castle, academic dean, encouraged
and supported them.
B
y the beginning of the
second semester, they were
frequently playing off campus
at numerous church functions and
at events in other Adventist schools,
including Andrews University and
AUC. When Hoyle graduated at the
end of the year, he took a job at a
school in nearby Chattanooga so that
the trio could continue.
During the school year they had
worked with Jim Hannum, a teacher
at SMC, to record and produce their
first record, My Lord, What a Morning.
Hannum, who had considerable
expertise in recording, worked tirelessly
with them for weeks and late into
the night, serving as both their sound
engineer and producer in a makeshift
studio with three microphones.
When the next school year started,
the trio resumed singing, and began
selling their record at concerts. The
sales of the record and playing of it on
religious music radio stations led to
increased popularity and more requests
to perform.
I
n November 1966, H.M.S.
Richards, Jr., while visiting on
campus heard them perform and
approached them about singing at
evangelistic meetings he was holding
in Texas on behalf of the Voice of
Prophecy. Richards had a special
interest in trying to connect with the
young people of the church and saw
the trio, with its music and informal
comments between numbers as a way
to reach that group.
Their success in
Texas led to another
invitation from
Richards to work with
him at a second VOP
evangelistic series in
Hinsdale, Illinois, in
the second semester.
Richards noted their
effectiveness in
reaching young people
and asked them to
join with him and Del
Delker that summer
during their tours to
camp meetings on
behalf of the VOP.
By the end of August 1967, travel
with the VOP, combined with other
appointments, totaled eighty thousand
miles. It had been an exhausting, yet
exhilarating eight months.
W
hen summer ended,
The Wedgwood Trio
was nationally known
in Adventist circles and hugely
popular with young people. The
reception accorded the group by
older Adventists, however, was
somewhat mixed. Conservative
church members and ministers were
convinced the trio constituted an
endorsement for current popular
music that would lead the youth
away from, not into, the church.
The reaction was visceral, surfacing
more than any other time during their
travels with Richards and Delker
that summer. After one introductory
performance in an evening meeting
at a Mid-western camp meeting,
Richards was angrily confronted by
the conference official in charge of
music for the meetings. At the end of a
discussion that continued into the early
morning hours, Richards was told the
trio would not be allowed to perform
The Wedgwood Trio performing in 1967
at the youth meetings the next day.
This action, the most extreme that
summer, was a blow to the trio as well
as Delker and Richards. All during
those travels they had to deal with
objections over the music, the group’s
attire (matching double-breasted blue
blazers with ties and gray slacks),
Vollmer’s naturally blond hair (thought
to be bleached), and the “girls” who
accompanied them (Hoyle’s wife and
Richards’ wife and daughter).
In spite of the criticisms, both
Richards and Delker later talked about
how they had personally enjoyed
working with the trio and the positive
impact it had had on the young people
that summer during their travels in
thirteen states and two provinces in
Canada.
14
T
he success of the trio’s first
record had led to the release
of another, Come, Follow
Me, recorded by Chapel Records in
the spring of 1967, during their final
semester at SMC. A third record was
recorded with Del Delker in the VOP
recording studio during that summer.
Their records, which were selling well,
led to their acceptance into mainstream
Adventist music and bookings for
performances now
had to be done six
to nine months in
advance. They were
performing in sellout
concerts to enthusiastic
and appreciative
audiences in large and
well-known venues
such as the Pasadena
Civic Auditorium in
California.
A
t the end of
the summer,
they returned
to England for two
weeks, where they
assisted in street evangelism in London
during the day and performed in the
New Gallery Center in the evenings.
That fall, the trio, now based
in California, continued its busy
schedule. The VOP and Bill Dopp,
who was working with Adventist
youth in Southern California, helped
find jobs for Vollmer and Hoyle so
that they could be in the area while
Summerour pursued his medical
studies at Loma Linda University.
Because of their work and
studies, they limited performances
to the weekends. Secular Saturday
evening concerts were sellouts, large
numbers of records were being sold
at these events and in Adventist
bookstores and income from concert
fees and royalties was substantial.
By the summer of 1969, however, a
decline in the size of audiences and a
drop in record sales was noticeable.
In mainstream music, edgier sounds
in rock music and more sophisticated
folk music were emerging as the new
rage with young audiences.
With the approach of a new
decade, Hoyle and Summerour felt
the trio should experiment with and
incorporate some of these newer
trends into their performances.
They believed this would revive
waning interest in their group and
broaden their appeal to young people
both in and outside the church,
creating expanded opportunities for
evangelism.
They proposed
including more rhythmic
activity by adding
percussion instruments,
using electric keyboards
and amplified string
instruments, and singing
songs with more thoughtprovoking lyrics about
challenging issues
developing in the church
and society. Vollmer,
however, became
increasingly uneasy as
these changes began to be
implemented.
For him, the new
approach was a departure
from what they had wanted
to do as a group when they had started
five years earlier. The newer music
conveyed a message of anger and
rebellion that stood in sharp contrast
with the music of hope and affirmation
they had been singing.
He was troubled over what he
felt would be a compromise of his
principles if he continued with the
group and, after discussing his concerns
with the other two, withdrew. It was
a troubling development for all of the
trio, the end of an experience that had
created extremely close personal bonds
and many satisfying memories.
V
ollmer left the group three
weeks before a major concert
scheduled at La Sierra
College, later University. A cancellation
of the contract wasn’t possible and
since time was of the essence, the
two men invited Gary Evans, a
senior at Glendale Academy and an
accomplished guitarist, to audition.
Although Evans’ life experience
of growing up in California and his
age differed from that of the other
two men, musical aspects meshed
surprisingly well from the start.
A 1970 Wedgwood publicity photograph
John Waller, Jerry Hoyle, Gary Evans, Bob Summerour
Evans now became part of a new
group called Wedgwood, one that
began forging a new identity, a more
contemporary sound.
Electric string instruments were
added and Hoyle’s acoustic string bass
was replaced with an electric one.
Electric keyboards were added, played
by John Waller, a medical student who
had attended MPA with Hoyle and
Vollmer and been at SMC when the trio
was there. When the transformed group
played the concert at LSC previously
15
scheduled for the older trio, some in the
audience did not like the changes and
began leaving during the program.
Percussionists and other studio
musicians joined the group for
recording sessions. The first album
released by Chapel Records under the
Wedgwood name, Country Church,
with its soft rock feel, drew decidedly
mixed reviews.
I
n February 1970, five months
after Evans and Waller joined the
group, Wedgwood gave a Saturday
night concert at Walla Walla College,
later University, introducing their new
sound, music, and appearance to that
campus. The new look captured in a
publicity photo used to
announce that concert featured
various members with long
hair, a beard, and moustaches,
attired in modish clothes
including paisley shirts,
scarves, and leather jackets.
Although their concert
created some controversy
on that campus, it was a
concert given at Pacific
Union College a month
later that became a turning
point for them. At the time
of the concert, the students
responded as they had at
WWC, with increasing
enthusiasm as the program progressed,
and then gave them a rousing ovation
at the end, a response the group
viewed as an affirmation of what they
were doing.
Shortly after their return home
from PUC, however, they received a
letter from F.O. Rittenhouse, president
of the college. In it, he revealed that
although the music department had
unanimously urged a cancellation
of the scheduled performance prior
to their coming, the school had not
done so, feeling it should honor its
agreement with them. Rittenhouse
concluded his letter by stating the
action of the school: that in light of its
performance and standards, the group
would not be invited back for another
appearance on campus. Additionally,
he noted that a copy of his letter was
being sent to all of the other Adventist
colleges and universities.
A
few weeks later, they
performed at Andrews
University, where again the
students greeted their performance
with great enthusiasm. Older members
of the church and school faculty and
administrators, however, reacted
angrily, deeply concerned over the
influence Wedgwood was having on
the younger generation. Rittenhouse’s
letter, distorted news about the group,
and false rumors about supposed
drug use resulted in fewer and fewer
invitations for concerts.
Wedgwood felt it was speaking to
cultural issues with thought-provoking
lyrics and finely crafted music suitable
for Adventist youth in the 1970s, an
era characterized by rebellion against
authority and the status quo. Increasing
numbers of Adventists began, however,
to see them as facilitating turmoil
within the church’s youth.
A
pparently, the greatest
concern about the group,
other than its appearance,
was the more contemporary rhythms
and lyrics of their music. From an
arranger’s viewpoint, the quality of
scoring and creative orchestrations
using numerous instruments, such
as recorder, electrified harpsichord,
dobro, and other exotic instruments,
was remarkable.
They began working on an album
titled Dove that would present their
best work. For a year, they rewrote
and rescored some of the songs and
had multiple recording sessions,
redoing numerous tracks in their quest
for perfection.
In the midst of that year, they
were invited to present a concert at
the Loma Linda University Church
in September 1972. They decided
that the concert would be recorded
and released as a live-concert album.
A small orchestra was formed and
orchestrations for a dozen of their
numbers were prepared to complement
other numbers that they would
accompany with their usual string,
keyboard, and percussion instruments.
The church was packed with
an audience that had come with high
expectations. From the start of the
concert, the performers could sense
the growing excitement in the crowd
and responded with one of the best
performances of their lives. A third
of the way through the concert, the
audience began applauding at the end
of numbers, an unheard of reaction in
Adventist church sanctuaries at that
time.
The euphoria following the
obvious success of the program
vanished a few days later when the
Loma Linda city newspaper panned
the concert in a review headlined
“Wedgwood: Shall We Dance?” When
the album of that concert was released
a few weeks later, the university
church requested that its name not be
mentioned in the liner of the jacket. Yet
another blow followed when release
of the Dove album was recalled from
Adventist bookstores a month later.
In the earliest days of the
formation of Wedgwood there had
been talk of it becoming a full-time
entity and possibly breaking into
mainstream music outside the church.
The realities of what it would take to
pursue that course and now the loss
of support from within the church
that had been its base ended that
16
possibility. They now made moves to
begin their post-Wedgwood lives.
S
ummerour did a residency
in psychiatry at Loma Linda
University and set up practice
in nearby Riverside. Disillusioned by
the university concert and what had
happened to the Dove recording, a
project he led out in, he put his guitar
and banjo in a closet, rarely touching
them and then only to try out a tune
and lyric that had come to mind.
Hoyle, who had been teaching
at Loma Linda Academy, went
through a traumatic divorce about
the time of the group’s ending. He
briefly worked as a medical social
worker and then enrolled in a doctoral
program in clinical psychology. After
completing a Ph.D. in that area, he
did a post-doctoral internship in the
LLU department of psychiatry and
eventually became a faculty member
there, a position he still holds.
After leaving the trio in 1969,
Vollmer continued to teach Bible. He
completed an M.Div. in the seminary at
Andrews University and then taught at
Greater Miami Academy in Florida. In
1982, after serving as a pastor in North
Carolina, he accepted an invitation to
work as a pastor/evangelist in Galway,
Ireland. Working in this enchanting
part of that country proved to be a
wonderful experience for him and his
family. In 1987, they returned to San
Diego, California, where he was senior
pastor in the El Cajon church.
I
n 1990, twenty-one years after the
original trio had disbanded, Hoyle
called Vollmer with a suggestion
that they get together with Summerour
and play for the fun of it. Although
Vollmer was hesitant, they and their
families met at Hoyle’s home where,
following a meal together, they tuned
their instruments and began to sing. It
was an emotional reunion that started
with Down in the Valley and ended
with Shall We gather at the River,
the song they had used as the ending
number at every concert they had
given as a the Wedgwood Trio.
Inspired by that informal reunion,
they agreed that they would perform
together again as the Wedgwood Trio,
if invited to do so in the future.
T
wo years passed before they
received an invitation to play
at a reunion concert for a
convention of baby boomers in Long
Beach, California. After accepting the
invitation, Vollmer began to worry that
the other two might want to do some
of the newer music that Wedgwood
had done. His fear was allayed
early on, though, when Summerour
suggested they do only the “old
music” associated with the trio.
As a warm-up
for the convention
appearance, they
performed in
Vollmer’s church
two weeks before
the concert. The
positive reaction at
the church proved
to be a prelude to
that afforded them
at the convention,
which ended in a
standing ovation.
It was a resounding
affirmation of
the role they had
played in the lives
of their audience in
another age, when
both the trio and
those in attendance had been younger.
The reuniting of the three men
also meant more than just making
music. The comments and humorous
interaction between numbers, which had
ended when the trio had disbanded, now
resumed. Summerour recently observed:
Our music was one thing, but our
stage style was what really made our
group successful. We were able to put
people at ease with religious issues.
Don was really good at this type of
interaction. We had this rhythm where
I played the rebellious one, he was the
innocent, and Jerry was the peacemaker.
These usually secular exchanges, when
combined with the music, enabled us to
connect with our audiences and enhance
our spiritual message.
Still unsure about whether to
continue and, if so, at what level, they
accepted an invitation to perform
during alumni weekend at Southern
Adventist University, their alma mater.
Because of the enthusiastic reception
the trio received at this appearance,
they made personal and financial
commitments to continue as a trio.
ending in standing ovations. They
bought back the rights to their earlier
records and, in February 1993 released
a CD with recordings done from 1964
to 1969. The success of that collection
led to a second CD featuring music
done from 1970 to 1973. They have
since recorded additional CDs, with
sales of the collections and new
releases totaling over 50,000 copies.
After the concerts, countless
persons from all age groups have
surrounded the group, asking for
autographs and telling them about the
important role their music has played
in their lives and spiritual journey.
Although they received apologies from
persons who had criticized the group
years earlier, occasionally some older
church leaders and members let them
know they have not changed their
minds, despite the sweeping changes
that have happened in church music in
the last forty years.
I
N
umerous requests for concerts
began coming in and by
1995, three years after that
first reunion concert, they were giving
up to 25 performances a year, many
17
n 1995,
Wedgwood
traveled to
Australia, where
they sang in camp
meetings and at
Avondale College
to enthusiastic
audiences. Two
of their more
meaningful concerts
abroad, however,
were performed for
at alumni weekend
at Newbold College
in England in the
summer of 1995.
They took their
families along and
shared with them nostalgic visits to sites
that had had meaning to them as young
men in their early twenties. Both sacred
and secular programs that weekend were
highly successful.
A week before going to Newbold,
they performed at the General
Conference Session in Utrech in the
Netherlands. While three decades
earlier they had been viewed with alarm
by many in the Adventist church, they
were now featured at the largest church
gathering in history and greeted with
applause, no less, after their numbers.
Two years later, in March 1997, the
General Conference invited the trio
to give a concert at GC headquarters.
They played for an appreciative and
applauding SRO audience that included
the GC president. When they
performed the following
month at Leoni Meadows
campground in Northern
California, PUC president
Malcolm Maxwell publicly
invited them to return to the
campus, reversing the stance
taken by the college president
nearly thirty years earlier.6
All these things can and did happen.
And in the midst of them, Jerry was
unflappable and kept on as if nothing
had happened, even when he pulled one
wrong harmonica after another out of
his pocket. In the years I have known
him I don’t remember Jerry complaining
about anything. He just kept writing
wonderful songs and making his music.
I first heard Don sing the hymn
Softly and Tenderly during one of my first
concerts with them. To watch and hear
him sing that hymn was for me a moment
of great insight into the love of God, a
moment I carry with me to this day.7
T
he passage of years and the
changes around them in
society and the church as well
as those that have occurred in each
member’s life have forged friendships
and a bond that will be with them for
the rest of this life and into the next.
Like the Voice of Prophecy broadcast
and Faith for Today telecast, which
pioneered new ways in which to do
evangelism for those outside the
church, the Wedgwood Trio was the
first to show a way to reach and keep
young people and members
with differing tastes in the
church.
Dan Shultz
__________________________
1
This article is based in part on interviews
conducted by Marilyn Thomsen with
members of the Wedgwood Trio, which
were then edited and placed in context by
her in Wedgwood: Their music, their
journey, Pacific Press Publishing
Association, 1996.
2
From her biography at
www.iamaonline.com
B
3
From her biography at
eginning in 1995
www.iamaonline.com
4
and continuing
Roy Scarr had been guest teaching at
SMC during the previous year and invited
for the next seven
them to come to Newbold and sing their
years, Dick Walker, a
music, offering to provide a string bass for
The trio with Dick Walker following a recording session in Nashville for their
their use. They sang in his choir and he
fiddler, joined them for
last CD, Mountain Christmas
featured the trio on choir tours.
some of their concerts.
5
There is a difference in recollection about the name
he openness to new music that
change. Vollmer recalls it as stated here. Hoyle recalls it as
During those years, he played with
happening when they realized the name they had chosen was
now
exists
in
the
Adventist
them in concerts in Australia, New
puzzling to the English, who questioned the use of “shady”
church
contrasts
sharply
with
in the name for a group of clean-cut young men singing
Zealand, Canada, and the U.S. He later
Christian music.
attitudes of the 1960s and 1970s. In
wrote about that experience and the
6
William G. Johnson, “The Sound of Wedgwood,”
the four decades since the trio started,
Adventist Review, 17 July 1997, 13.
realities of life on the road:
changes in music have occurred at warp
Dick Walker, “Dick’s Forum - No.13,” www.
7
dickwalkermusic.com/forum13.html
speed. What was considered radical
During our concerts, Bob was the
8
Reger Smith, Jr., “In All Directions, A brief survey of
leader. It got to the point where he and I then now seems bland and dated to the
Adventist musicians today,” Adventist Review, May 2005,
could read each other with eye contact
ears of many of today’s youth
32,33.
and make adjustments as we were
In an article by Reger Smith in the
performing, a form of communication I
Conversations/Interviews/emails: Don Vollmer, 17,
Adventist Review in 2005, Del Delker
23 March 2009; Bob Summerour, 19,22 March 2009;
really enjoyed. All of us had a good way
spoke about her work with the trio in
Jerry Hoyle, March 2009.
of pulling together to make things work.
the
1960s:
“I
was
about
as
popular
as
Live music is fraught with endless
a skunk at a picnic. They wouldn’t let
possibilities for disaster. Strings break,
us sing at the adult camp meeting tent,
sound systems squawk or don’t work
Biographies for Jerry Hoyle, Bob Summerour, Don
only with the youth. Now, of course,
at all, words to songs are forgotten at
Vollmer, Gary Evans, John Waller, and Dick Walker
crucial moments, and the fiddle player
when I join with the Wedgwood on their
are provided at www.iamaonline.com
forgets to make his entrance, just standing reunion tours, they won’t let us sing
there with a goofy look on his face.
with the youth . . . too old-fashioned.”8
T
18
The Liberty Singers
&
Wretha Griffin Lang
For over two decades, The Liberty Singers, under the direction of Wretha Lang, thrilled residents in Charlotte County,
Florida, with their concerts. Her leadership and insistence on high standards in performance created a sound rivaling
that of professional groups and earned the support of a grateful community. The story of that ensemble and Lang’s life
provides an inspiring example of how professional fulfillment can be realized without support from the usual church
entities, especially when one has a dream and then pursues it with an unflinching commitment.
T
he Liberty Singers, a
Florida community choral
group with a professional
sound, began when a
neighbor discovered that
Wretha Lang, wife of the newly arrived
physician in town, was a musician
with an extensive musical background.
The neighbor joined with local radio
station manager Jack Lotz in 1972 to
extend an invitation to Lang to start
a community chorus. Lotz offered
to advertise auditions on his station
and help underwrite the expense for
purchasing music.
At the end of the auditions, they
needed more men. In response to a
contact by Lang, the personnel director
19
of Medical Center Hospital where her
husband was a resident agreed to let
participation in the choir be a perk for
the hospital’s employees. In its earliest
beginnings, the Langs personally
covered part of the expense for the
music. When it appeared the group
would survive, Wretha approached
the hospital about underwriting music
expenses in return for naming the group
The Liberty Singers of Medical Center.
F
rom that beginning in 1972 to
1979, audiences grew to include
nearly a thousand. Highlights
in those years included performing
Handel’s Messiah in 1974, with
members of the Fort Myers Symphony;
providing choreography and chorus in
support of professional soloists from
New York City in a performance of
the complete Mikado in 1975; and
a patriotic salute to the country in
1976. They also presented a concert of
excerpts from Oklahoma and the Music
Man, including costumes, acting, and
scenery, in 1977 and did highlights
from the Easter portion of the Messiah
with the West Coast Symphony,
directed by its conductor Paul Wolf.
B
eginning in 1979, Wretha took
a four-year break. When she
resumed conducting the group
in 1983, she continued to provide
effective and creative leadership for
the next nineteen years. During that
time they performed at Disney World,
and gave eighteen performances
of Joy Comes in the Morning, a
religious musical drama. In addition
to numerous seasonal programs
and countless performances in the
community, they presented A Salute to
Fred Waring and a patriotic salute to
those from Charlotte County who were
serving in the first Gulf War.
The group, now known as the
Liberty Singers, had assumed an
independent identity apart from the
hospital when it had earlier planned
a trip to Europe. It received funding
from the Arts and Humanities Council
of Charlotte County and other area
organizations, including the Medical
Center Hospital, after its connection
with the ensemble ended.
The Liberty Singers recorded
two albums in 1995, titled Slice of
Americana and Faith is Like a Child.
Both CDs evidence in a striking way
a sound and quality of performance
rivaling that of the best of professional
choral ensembles.
In 1998, the group performed a
fully staged version of Oklahoma! in
the county Civic Auditorium, assisted
by a sixteen piece orchestra. The
following year, Linda Salisbury, in
an editorial in the Charlotte HeraldTribune, spoke of the reputation
enjoyed by the ensemble and the
contribution it had made to the
community:
The Liberty Singers are remarkable
for many reasons. The first is the
group’s vocal excellence and blend of
voices. The choral group also enjoys
a cohesiveness that comes from the
longevity of many singers. Four
members have been with it since the
beginning . . . . Through the years the
Liberty Singers have performed great
sacred and secular music - sometimes up
to twenty performances a year.
Sometimes they have turned their
concerts into fund-raisers for good
causes. One program featured the
musical talents of local attorneys to help
raise money to alleviate world hunger.
Another featured area preachers, to
bring into bring in funds for the United
Way.
W
retha was born in North
Carolina to an Adventist
evangelist and moved
frequently during her childhood. Her
family was musical, her mother being
an aunt of Wayne Hooper, and she
began singing in a family quartet at
age two.
She started academy at Glendale
Academy in California and graduated
from the academy at Southwestern
Junior College in Texas in 1952 at
age 15. That summer she attended
a workshop at Westminster Choir
College that made a deep impression
on her. She recalls,
20
It was a two-week workshop
conducted by John Finley Williamson.
Merritt Schumann, choir director
at Southwestern at the time and an
inspiration to me, was also in attendance.
After leaving the college, he arranged
to have me travel to Campion Academy
[in Colorado] to sing the Messiah solos
with his choir. I had first performed those
solos at age 15 and then continued doing
them annually, singing as many as three
performances of both the Christmas and
the Easter portions, until I was 33.
She continued as a college student
at SWJC for a year, before transferring
to Union College. Following a year
there, the family moved to California,
where she started directing choral
groups under Oliver Beltz, director of
the music program for the Loma Linda
University Church, and continued
when Patrick Hicks succeeded him.
When Hicks pursued graduate study in
the summers in the late 1950s and early
1960s, Wretha directed the choir from
June to September, an experience she
would later recall as being invaluable.
She worked to pay off college
bills before deciding to return to UC
to resume her studies. In the year she
returned, she met Robert D. Lang,
who was planning on a career as a
physical therapist. When he left for
study at the medical school at Loma
Linda, Wretha returned to her home in
Loma Linda and continued her studies
at La Sierra College, studying under
John T. Hamilton and Harold Hannum.
She found Hamilton’s approach in
presenting his choirs to be instructive,
later observing, “I learned from him
how to bring an audience to its feet.”
S
he completed a B.A. degree
with an emphasis on church
music in 1959, the same year
in which Robert completed his studies
in physical therapy. They married that
summer and stayed in the area.
Following the birth of their second
child, Robert returned to college to
complete the prerequisites for entering
medical school and then continued
study towards a medical degree. While
he continued his schooling, she taught
piano and voice lessons in their home
and was a frequent soloist at the LLU
church and with the Vincent Mitzelfelt
Chorale, singing the soprano solos in
many performances of numerous major
choral works. She also simultaneously
held church music positions at the
Azure Hills SDA Church and a San
Bernardino Presbyterian church.
During that time she also worked
with four other singers to produce
a recording used to accompany a
textbook on music appreciation for use
in Adventist schools worldwide. Wayne
Hooper invited her to sing with himself,
tenor Bob Edwards, alto LuAnne
Strachan, and soprano Bunny Phillips
Thornburgh to complete this project.
In 1969, the Langs moved to
Orlando, Florida, where Robert
completed his internship. In their year in
Orlando, their four children, ranging in
age from four to nine, sang frequently as
a family quartet in area SDA churches
and won a talent show that year at the
hospital singing songs from Oliver.
She also started a girls’ chorus, which
continued for ten years after they left.
The Lang family then moved to
Charlotte County in Southwest
Florida, where Robert served at
the Medical Center Hospital as the
emergency room physician for a year
Before entering private practice.
Wretha was contacted during this time
to form the community choral group.
W
hile it is true the
community benefited
from her leadership of the
Liberty Singers, she herself found
musical fulfillment and gained many
friends from this experience. In 1999,
when she attempted to retire as director
of the ensemble, Lang, reflected on her
years with the group, observing:
Getting acquainted with people in this
community has been a marvelous part
of my life. I fell in love with this place.
Outstanding people became participants in
Liberty Singers “gigs” and supported our
activities way beyond the “call of duty.”
They are amazing people! Almost
half of the existing group today has
been in it for twenty years. It has given
me the opportunity to develop a certain
SDA church for thirty years. She was
able to take a break in 1999 after serving
in that capacity for 28 years, when
Marvin Robertson, dean of the school
of music and choir director at Southern
Adventist University for 33 years, retired
and moved to the area and assumed that
responsibility. She returned to that post
when he left the area in 2006.
Both the Liberty Singers and her
church choir were known for the quality
of their singing as well as for the blend
of their voices. Those who have studied
voice with her or listened to her students
know firsthand the excellence of her
work as a voice teacher.
B
choral sound with them and that is what
has kept me going. They are not cliquish,
however, and have welcomed new
members enthusiastically.
When Lang finally retired, she
received numerous tributes at her final
concert in April. Naomi Donson, art
critic at the Sarasota Herald-Tribune
noted that the most significant tribute
was a memorable performance by
the group that sent the “director
out in style.” Later that month, the
University Club of Charlotte gave her
its Genesis Award, a high honor in
that community, for her leadership in
enriching the cultural life of Charlotte
County and the surrounding area.
T
hrough the years, Lang also
continued her work as a church
musician, now having led the
music program at the Port Charlotte
21
eginning in 1979, Lang
developed a troubling speech
problem that reduced her
speaking to a whisper and ended
her career as a singer. It has been a
frustrating experience for one whose
voice in earlier years enabled her to
freely express her musical feelings in a
way that inspired so many.
She recently wrote about another
experience that helped her spiritually
and allowed her to inspire others:
In 1998 God impressed me to develop
a Bible reading plan which is topically
and chronologically arranged as far as
possible. It enabled me to read the Bible
completely through in a very short time
for the first time in my life. I thought
God gave that plan just for me! But in
2003-4, Mark Bond produced a website
for me so I could share my plan.
www.thisislifeeternal.org
Over 30 countries and seven
universities have visited the site. It’s an
incredible and amazing journey I’m on!
Now I pray that God will bring people
to want to know Him better and read the
scriptures and find the wonderful truths
that I hold dear. I like to think that my
life began in 1998, for God’s Word has
blessed my life abundantly!
Dan Shultz
News
IAMA’s FUTURE
Church. In a final appearance, they opened for a concert by
Richard Smallwood & Vision. They brought the audience
to its feet with You Must Have That True Religion, which
featured soprano Lianna Wimberly.
Because of rapidly increasing expenses associated with
publishing Notes and the wish of editor Dan Shultz not to
continue as editor, the board recently took action to suspend
publication of the magazine, yet continue the organization
with reduced services. Shultz has offered to serve as editor
of IAMA’s Hotline and maintain the website, which will be
funded by contributions. The hotline will be expanded to
include news and personal notes. Not on the hotline? Send
your name and e-mail address to: [email protected]
IAMA BIOGRAPHY PROJECT
The biography project will continue. Notice of additions
to the website biographical listings will be posted on the
hotline as they are completed. At our website there are now
biographies for over 750 musicians who are or have been
associated with the SDA church. (www.iamaonline.com).
If you do not see a biography for a favorite Adventist music
teacher or musician friend, you can help us create one for
him/her by forwarding the name and any information you
might have. Don’t be bashful! If you are not yet listed or
even if you are, we invite you to send information, or an
update, if needed, to: [email protected]
The Riverside, California, Mt. Rubidoux Seventh-day
Adventist church choir won three awards, including Best
Overall Choir in the regional Verizon Wireless “How Sweet
the Sound” choir competition held in Los Angeles in October
2008. In addition to winning $15,000 in prize money, they won
an all-expense paid trip to compete in the finals held in Atlanta,
Georgia, in November. The Oakland performance can be seen at
http://www.howsweetthesound.com/media/video_player/21.
Sacred Music Piano Festival, an annual event given under
the auspices of the Children’s Ministries program at the
Loma Linda University Church, presented its 7th festival
in November this past year. Lily Diehl, who started this
program to stimulate young musicians to expand their studies
in classical repertoire to include works with sacred themes,
serves as coordinator and chair of the festival.
Participation is open for students from ages five to
eighteen, who participate in four categories: solo, duet,
composition, and improvisation. The one-day non-competitive
event, which is held on a Sabbath from 1 to 5:30, offers
master classes with outstanding clinicians who also choose
the students who are showcased in a Grand Finale Concert.
The Loma Linda Broadcast Network aired this year’s concert
on satellite TV. SMPF is an activity accredited by the Music
Teachers’ Association of California.
New Creation at the National Presbyterian Church
New Creation, an Atlanta, Georgia, based Adventist choir,
participated in the inauguration of the 44th U.S. president,
Barack Obama, in January. They opened the People’s
Inaugural Gala Prayer Breakfast on Saturday with Holy is
Thy Name and sang the benediction for the event, introducing
an original work by Patrick Tyson of Chicago titled Change
We Can Believe In. At noon, they performed at the inaugural
luncheon held in the Grand Hilton to celebrate Michele
Obama’s birthday, where they sang Daniel Saw De Stone
to start the event. They closed the Sabbath by singing in the
Metropolitan Adventist Church.
On Sunday, they sang Lift up Every Voice and Sing in the
morning worship services at the National Presbyterian
The Southern Adventist University school of music recently
received the first in an initial shipment of 21 new Steinway
pianos. These instruments are part of a piano replacement
program which, when completed, will make SAU and
22
News
Canadian University College the first of the Adventist
universities and colleges to be All-Steinway schools. SAU
will be one of five in Tennessee and the 100th in the world to
be able to claim that distinction. A total of thirty pianos will
be purchased and placed in selected practice rooms, teaching
studios, and Ackerman Auditorium, which will have a 9-foot
grand.
The project was launched two years ago, following a
survey of the school’s pianos by music school dean Scott Ball,
professor of piano Peter Cooper, and Ted Summitt, a retired
local Steinway dealer and SAU alumnus. When SAU’s
corporate and foundations director Joy McKee was
approached about the project, she responded positively to the
idea, fundraising goals were determined, and Ruth Liu was
chosen to chair the campaign. The total cost of the project
will be in excess of a million dollars. Good progress has
been made in raising the needed amount, and the goal is to
complete the project in two more years.
Upper Columbia Academy in Spangle, Washington, had to
give their annual Christmas Concert, A Savior From on High,
on January 10 instead of December 20 because of a record
snowfall at the time of the original scheduling. Even so, the
program, which featured the concert band, full choir and the
two elite choral groups, the Choraliers and Vocal Octet, as
well as other ensembles, attracted more than 1,000 people.
The concert, given in the historic and prestigious Fox Theatre
in nearby Spokane, was presented as a gift to the community.
The Columbia Union College Concert Band, under the direction of Bruce Wilson, toured in Puerto Rico in March. The band
performed five sacred and three secular concerts, the latter ending with encores and standing ovations. Wilson, now in his eleventh
year as director of the CUC band program, has taken six international tours with the ensemble, four of them to Europe. In his
39-year career, he has commissioned nationally known composers to write twelve sacred compositions for band. The composers
guest directed the premieres of those works with Wilson’s groups. A graduate of Union College, he completed a master’s degree at
Shenandoah Conservatory of Music. He has written and arranged over sixty works for brass choir. His Shenandoah Valley Academy
bands received numerous superior ratings and first place awards from 1985 to 1998. The CUC band is a yearly feature at the Pageant
of Peace Christmas program at the White House.
23
Personal Notes
Florence Clarambeau, now retired
and living in Las Vegas, Nevada,
taught piano at four academies and
four colleges and universities in a
career spanning nearly five decades.
From her first encounter with the
piano as a young child, her goal was
to be a music teacher, one she realized
fully as she taught and enjoyed
working with students of all ages.
Her interest in music and piano
started the day a new piano was
delivered to their home. She was
unable to leave it alone and within a short while her mother
made arrangements for her to study with a neighborhood girl.
She was an apt student and by age eight was playing for church.
She attended Enterprise Academy in Kansas, where she studied
piano under Eleanor Krogstad and played clarinet in the band
under Eleanor’s husband, Norman. Following graduation from EA
at age sixteen, she enrolled at Union College and studied piano
under Adrian Lauritzen and Charles Watson. She was the primary
accompanist for voice lessons and the choirs, assisting Lauritzen
and then Harlan Abel.
In 1950, following completion of a degree at UC, she
accepted a position at Walla Walla College, now University,
where she taught for three years and married Lyle Clarambeau.
In 1954, after teaching for one year at Gem State Academy, they
accepted positions at Atlantic Union College, where they stayed
for five years.
She subsequently taught at Sandia View Academy for a year,
Highland View Academy in Maryland for two years, and then
at Baltimore Junior Academy and Columbia Union College,
teaching at the latter from the late 1960s until 1982. During
those years, she also maintained a private studio and completed a
master’s degree at the University of Maryland in 1976. In 1983,
the Clarambeaus accepted positions at Canadian Union College,
now Canadian University College, where they taught until 1993.
When they retired they moved to Creston, British Columbia,
where she became the primary piano teacher in that community.
She moved to Nevada in 2002, two years after her husband died.
John T. Dennison, director of choral activities at Walla Walla
University for the past six years and conductor of its orchestra
since 2006, is retiring at the end of this school year. Coming from
the Los Angeles area, Dennison taught in schools in that region and
directed the sanctuary choir in the Glendale City SDA Church. He
also was Music Director of the Southeast Symphony Orchestra, a
position he continued to hold until 2006.
A 1970 graduate in voice at the California State University,
Los Angeles, he also completed a master’s degree there in 1972.
He completed a DMA in church music at the University of
Southern California in 1985. He studied with Herbert Blomstedt
in the International Institute of Orchestral Conducting held at
24
Loma Linda University from
1975 to 1983 and was one of
twelve chosen to study personally
in a master class with Blomstedt.
In 1986, he was chosen through
auditioning to participate in a
conducting workshop at the
University of West Virginia taught
by Harold Faberman.
Dennison chaired the music
department at Oakwood College,
now University, and directed its
Vocal Ensemble and Touring
Choir from 1983 to 1987. In
1986, he directed a performance
of Rossini’s Stabat Mater with
choir, orchestra and soloists from
OC, as well as spirituals, at the
John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington,
D.C., to critical acclaim in the Washington Post.
More recently, as a result of a choral workshop Dennison
conducted in Penang, Malaysia, in 2006, he was invited back in
the following year to conduct a performance of the Messiah in
that city’s primary concert hall.
William DeWitt is director of the Saipan Southern High School
Manta Concert Band in the
Commonwealth of the Northern
Mariana Islands. He is also
founder, conductor, and music
director of the Saipan Pacific
Winds Community Concert Band.
In 2008, his award winning high
school band and the SPWCCB
were participants in activities
associated with the 2008 XXIX
Summer Olympic games in
Beijing, China. They
performed with other band
musicians at the Olympic Stadium,
the Great Wall of China, and in Tiananmen Square, the first
foreign ensembles to play in that historic square.
The group was invited to participate as part of that large
band, numbering 2008, following the winning of the prestigious
Gold Award at the June 2008 Tumon Bay Music Festival in
Guam. They were chosen as being among the best musicians
from the Oceania “green zone,” one of four different zones in that
geographic region.
Dewitt started teaching in 1992. Since he accepted the
position at SSHS in 2000, he has twice been nominated to Who’s
Who Among America’s Teachers, in 2004-2005 and in 20052006. In 2006, he was selected as the Saipan Southern High
School Teacher of the Year, an honor acknowledged in a
Personal Notes
February 2006 House Resolution by the Northern Marianas
Commonwealth House of Representatives. DeWitt, who
completed theology and music degrees at Pacific Union College
in 1992 and 1993, and his wife, Lois, have three children.
Ivan E. Flores, a brass performer,
is the new music teacher at
Emerald Christian Academy
in Pleasant Hill, Oregon. A
1983 graduate of Laurel Brook
Academy in Tennessee, he
returned to his native Mexico
in 1995 to complete a B.Mus.
with a major in trombone at the
University of Montemorelos.
He then taught at UM where
he served as band director until
2000. Beginning in 2001, Flores
attended Andrews University,
where he taught as a graduate assistant while completing an
M.Mus. in conducting under Allan Mitchel. From 2001 to 2003,
when he completed his degree, he was music director at the Niles,
Michigan, Westside Elementary School.
From 2004 to 2007, he served as chair of the music program
at Medellin, Colombia. A versatile performer, Flores frequently
performs in brass ensembles on French horn, trombone, or tuba.
Jeremy Irland is director of the
band and choir at Walla Walla
Valley Academy and handbell choir
at Milton Stateline SDA School.
He is also an adjunct voice and
Introduction to Music teacher at
nearby Walla Walla University.
Born in Langley, British,
Columbia, Canada, Irland grew up
in a family where music was an
important activity. Aside from
singing publicly with his siblings,
starting when he was in first
grade, he started lessons on piano
and guitar at an early age. Following graduation from WWVA in
1999, he enrolled at WWU where he completed B.Mus. Ed. with
a vocal/choral emphasis in 2005. He continued study in voice at
the University of Washington, completing an M.Mus. in voice in
2008.
Irland was a district winner in 2005 Metropolitan Opera
competitions and a Seattle Opera Young Artist alternate in
2006. He is a frequent bass soloist and has played key roles in
numerous opera and other vocal/choral productions. He spent
two seasons with NOISE (Northwest Opera in Schools, Etcetera)
where he sang roles in the Barber of Seville and The Daughter of
the Regiment.
LeRoy Peterson, professor
of music at Pacific Union
College for the past 25 years
and widely known violinist,
retired at the end of this past
school year. Peterson was
born in Canada. The son of
missionary parents, he grew
up in Singapore.
Two years after giving
his first violin recital at
age 14, he went to Geneva,
Switzerland, to study. At 17,
LeRoy performed with the
National Symphony Orchestra
in Washington, D.C. After
graduating from Columbia
Union College, he completed
his graduate studies at the
Peabody Conservatory of Johns Hopkins University. He taught for
three years at Pioneer Valley Academy and Atlantic Union College
and 15 years at Andrews University, before going to PUC.
His love of travel has taken him from the jungles of Borneo,
where he climbed the highest mountain in SE Asia, Mt. Kinabalu,
to the 1,000 year-old temples of Angkor Wat in Cambodia,
from the Great Wall in China to the Garden of Gethsemane,
from swimming in the Volga River to sailing on the Black Sea
along the coast of Yalta, from Masada to Bali, to the land of the
Midnight Sun. Peterson has visited 35 countries and performed
in most of them. This past summer, he completed his ninth trip to
Russia, working in evangelism with music and preaching.
Aside from performing in Carnegie Hall and Town Hall in
N.Y. City, he has appeared on television and radio and as soloist
with orchestras in Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Singapore,
Michigan, N.Y. City, California, and the Ukraine. Chapel Records
recorded him on six different albums, and he was been featured in
the international Strad magazine. Highlights in his musical career
include performing in the world premiere of Handel’s Messiah
in Bethlehem and as soloist in a memorial concert in Baltimore
for John F. Kennedy. Peterson has been a contest winner in
badminton and bodybuilding and has received several awards in
violin performance and painting.
His wife, Carol, works as a nurse for a dermatologist at the
St. Helena Hospital. His son, Todd, and daughter, Shelley, both
graduated from P.U.C. and have also taught there. One of his
great joys now is spending time with his 20-month-old grandson,
Blake, and his 14-month-old grandson, Lachlan.
As Professor Emeritus at PUC, he continues to perform, to
teach World Music and Culture, and to give string lessons.
More complete biographies for persons listed in Personal
Notes can be found at www.iamaonline.com
25
MUSIC CALENDAR
December 15-19
Midwest International Band and Orchestra Clinic
Chicago
Segue
John Dennison
Retiring, choir and orchestra conductor, professor of music, Walla Walla University
Contributors
1992-2009
C. Warren Becker
Elsie and Edwin Buck
Steve Brown
Gracie E. Cafferky
Lily Diehl
Lucille D. Evans
Barbara Favorito
Gary Fresk
Paul Hamel
McKee Foods Corporation
James Hanson
William and Marjorie Ness
Matthew James
Joan Ogden
Ruth Bergstrom Jones
Eurydice Osterman
Erna J. Koch
Blythe Owen
Donna Leno
Wayne Patriquin
Felix A. Lorenz, Jr.
Marvin Robertson
Carol Mayes
Kenneth E. Rudolf
Total Contributions
$76,500.00
Photo Gallery
Back Cover Photograph
(Opposite Page)
The Wedgwood Trio
Left to right: Bob Summerour, Don Vollmer, Jerry Hoyle
IAMA Website http://www.iamaonline.com
The IAMA Hotline! To register: [email protected]
LeRoy Peterson,
noted Adventist
musician and
violinist
Photograph by
Dick Dower
NOTES is a compilation of articles, news, and
information contributed in part by IAMA members.
Accuracy of submitted material is the responsibility of
the contributor. Viewpoints expressed are those of the
writers and not necessarily those of IAMA.
THE INTERNATIONAL ADVENTIST
MUSICIANS ASSOCIATION
is a professional organization committed to facilitating
communication throughout the total spectrum of
Seventh-day Adventist musicians.
President
Vice President
Secretary Treasurer
Publications Editor
Dan and Carolyn Shultz
Will Stuivenga
Karin Thompson
Bruce Toews
Lynn Wheeler
Elsie Landon Buck
Jeffry Kaatz
Terri Koch
Dan Shultz
Editor/Layout
Copy Editor
Typography
Logo
IAMA
PO Box 476
College Place, WA 99324
Dan Shultz
Carolyn Shultz
Matthew McVane
Tom Emmerson
Photograph Credits:
Cover collage: Selected photos from features in this issue. Others: Florence Clarambeau,
24, upper left; Columbia Union College and James Bingham, page 3; Gordon R. deLeon,
page 4, top; Mark Janke, 23, top; Steve Johnson, page 5; Pacific Union College alumni
office, 24, lower; Southern Tidings, 22, left; Walla Walla University yearbook 1968
Mountain Ash, 211, page 14 and newspaper The Collegian, 19 February 1970, 1, page 15;
Unknown, pages 4(lower), 6, 7, 12, 17, 18, 19, 21, 22(right), 23(lower), page 24(upper
left), page 25(all), back cover.
E-mail: [email protected]
Website: http://www.iamaonline.com
27
The Wedgwood Trio
See pages 12-18 for the story of this popular and historic group in Adventist music
International Adventist Musicians Association
P.O. Box 476 College Place, WA 99324
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