To everything there is a season…

At a special August 6 meeting of the ACDA-MN Board of Directors, I informed them of my intention to retire from my position as Executive Director effective June 30, 2022, at the end of the current fiscal year.

Subsequent actions of the Board and of the FMC Executive Committee approved a transition plan that allows me to become an Independent Contractor continuing to serve and provide important leadership continuity to the organization as Director of Development and Coordinator of the FMC 151st Anniversary Concert through the end of calendar year 2022. Further, I will assume more limited development duties in January and February of 2023 producing the 2022 FMC Annual Report.

I look forward to working extensively with the ACDA-MN and FMC leadership teams throughout the coming months to ensure a smooth and seamless transition for our organization and my successor.

Thank you for the distinctive honor to serve our Minnesota choral music community in this staff capacity since 2009. It has been a special position that has nurtured me as a collaborative arts administrator, an appointment that I have cherished greatly for a total of thirteen years. Thank you for pouring your overwhelming support and faith into me that resulted in my attempts to serve our organization with dedication, honesty, integrity, and above all, immense joy!

…a time for every purpose under heaven.

Bruce W. Becker
Executive Director
ACDA of Minnesota



ACDA-MN officially welcomes these newly elected and appointed leaders as of July 1, 2021:

Stephanie Trump
Stephanie TrumpState President 2021-23
Robbinsdale Armstrong High School
Diane Heaney
Diane HeaneyState Vice President 2021-23
Albert Lea High School
Jerry Upton
Jerry UptonState President-Elect 2021-23
East High School, Duluth
Tim Cayler
Tim CaylerCentral District Chair 2021-23
St. Mary’s Catholic Church, Willmar
Amy Jo Cherner
Amy Jo ChernerMetro East District Chair 2021-24
Eagan High School
Laura Quaintance
Laura QuaintanceNorthwest District Chair 2021-24
Minnesota Community and Technical College, Fergus Falls
Zack Carlson
Zack CarlsonRepertoire & Resource Chair for High School Choirs 2021-23
Buffalo High School
Ryan Deignan
Ryan DeignanRepertoire & Resource Chair for Vocal Jazz 2021-23
University of Minnesota-Duluth
Gerald Gurss
Gerald GurssRepertoire & Resource Chair for TTBB Choirs 2021-23
Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus
Shekela Wanyama
Shekela WanyamaRepertoire & Resource Chair for World Musics and Cultures 2021-23
University of Minnesota-Twin Cities
Andrew Parr
Andrew Parr4-5-6 Boys’ Honor Choir Co-Chair
Rogers Middle School


Honoring Legacy

Celebrating Influence and Inspiration

The annual ACDA-MN State Conference will be scheduled for Friday-Saturday, November 19-20, located at St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church in Mahtomedi. The conference has been programmed by Stephanie Trump, ACDA-MN State President.


  • Bethel University Choir, Merrin Guice Gill, conductor

  • Concordia University Christus Chorus, David Mennicke, conductor

  • Fertile-Beltrami Senior High Choir, Richard Schrom, conductor

  • Le Donne, Wayne Kivell, conductor

  • Luverne High School Concert Choir, Seana Graber, conductor

  • Minnesota Boychoir (all ensembles), Mark Johnson, conductor

  • Northfield Youth Choirs Treble Choir, Nicole Thietje, conductor

  • Twin Cities Gay Men’s Chorus, Gerald Gurss, conductor

  • Waconia Middle School Choir, Evan Jones and Susan Snorek, conductors


FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 19 – Legacy Concert #1

Axel Theimer
Axel Theimer
  • St. John’s University Men’s Chorus, Bradley Miller, conductor
  • College of St. Benedict/St. John’s University Chamber Choir, Bradley Miller, conductor
  • Kantorei, Adam Reinwald, conductor
Philip Brunelle
Philip Brunelle
  • VocalEssence Singers, G. Phillip Shoultz, conductor
  • Plymouth Congregational Church Senior Choir

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 20 – Legacy Concert #2

Kathy Saltzman Romey
Kathy Saltzman Romey
  • University of Minnesota University Singers, Matthew Mehaffey, conductor
  • University of Minnesota Graduate Alumni Choir, Amanda Weber, conductor
  • The Minnesota Chorale, Katherine Chan, guest conductor
Dale Warland
Dale Warland
  • The Singers, Matthew Culloton, conductor

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 20 – Urban Initiatives High School Choral Festival

Coty Raven Morris
Coty Raven MorrisClinician / Guest Conductor


  • VocalEssence Singers of this Age, G. Phillip Shoultz, conductor
  • Urban High School Singers Coalition:
    • Central High School, Alex Ferderer, conductor
    • Edison High School, Stacy Athorn, conductor
    • Harding High School, Natalia Romero, conductor
    • Humboldt High School, Barbara Lawrence-Windholz, conductor
    • Johnson High School, Melanie Tlusty, conductor
    • Minneapolis North High School
    • Patrick Henry High School
    • Open World Learning Academy, Seth Bovis, conductor
    • Roosevelt High School, Adrian Davis, conductor
    • South High School, Laurie Meyers, conductor
    • Southwest High School, Bryan Fisher, conductor
    • St. Louis Park High School, John Myzsowski, conductor
    • Washburn High School, Timothy Buzza, conductor

24 Interest Sessions programmed for conductors of all levels of singing

Conference schedule is subject to change. Updates will be posted on the registration site and communicated through The Weekly Pulse as needed.

Conference registration site is open.


Inspiring New Generations for Excellence

For detailed information on how to audition students for the ACDA-MN Honor Choir program go to:  MNHonorChoirs.org

Student participation in the ACDA-MN honor choir program is a direct benefit of current membership in ACDA.


Thursday, February 19, 2022

Rehearsals:  Westminster Presbyterian Church, Minneapolis

Performance:  Bethel University, Benson Great Hall, Arden Hills

Auditions Due:  Friday, October 29

Director Notification:  Tuesday, November 9

Scholarship Applications Due:  Friday, November 19

Registration Forms and Payments Due:  Wednesday, December 1

Guest Conductors

Greg Douma
Greg DoumaTBB
Eastview High School, Apple Valley
G. Phillip Shoultz
G. Phillip ShoultzSSAA
VocalEssence, Minneapolis
Kyle Fleming
Kyle FlemingSATB
Regis University, Denver CO


Saturday, May 7, 2022

Rehearsals & Performance:  St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, Mahtomedi

Auditions Due:  Friday, February 11

Director Notification:  Tuesday, February 22

Scholarship Applications Due:  Friday, March 4

Registration Forms and Payments Due:  Wednesday, March 23

Guest Conductors

Herbert Washington
Herbert WashingtonBOYS'
Phoenix Boys’ Choir, Phoenix AZ
Karen Howard
Karen HowardGIRLS'
University of St. Thomas, St. Paul


Saturday, May 7, 2022

Rehearsals & Performance:  St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church, Mahtomedi

Auditions Due:  Friday, January 19

Director Notification:  Tuesday, February 8

Scholarship Applications Due:  Friday, February 18

Registration Forms and Payments Due:  Wednesday, March 2

Guest Conductors

Lin Warren
Lin WarrenCTB
Hastings High School (ret)
Shelly Schaeufele
Shelly SchaeufeleSSA
Waukee Community School, Waukee, IA

Needs-based student scholarships are available from the FMC Endowment Fund. Encourage and support eligible students to apply. Please observe timelines.


Audition fees for 2021-22 remain at $16 per student, and registration fees for selected students at $124.

Audition and registration fees cover these annual costs:  on-line audition site costs, guest conductor artistic fees and travel expenses, accompanist, instrumentalists, on-site medical staff, rental of rehearsal and performance venues, liability insurance, food, t-shirt, downloadable audio concert recording, professional rehearsal tracks, and ACDA-MN administrative staff support services.


ACDA-MN will honor the following individuals for their outstanding contributions to our choral music community at the annual award luncheon scheduled for Saturday, November 20.


Zack Carlson
Zack Carlson
Buffalo High School


Brian Stubbs
Brian Stubbs
Brainerd High School


René Clausen
René Clausen
Conductor Emeritus, The Concordia Choir


We remind our members that the ACDA-MN membership roster from the ACDA national office is available to all members via our website homepage. This monthly updated roster serves our organization as our official membership roster. To access, please register on the ACDA-MN website at:  acda-mn.com/register/

Please keep your membership profile updated with the ACDA national office. This is the only source of personal contact information that our state organization uses.  Phone updates to:  405 232 8161 x 110.

When given the option, please consider clicking “automatic renewal” next time you are eligible to renew your membership.


ACDA-MN will receive ten complimentary memberships to be distributed to new members during the ACDA national new member campaign this fall. The ACDA-MN Board of Directors and R&R Chairs have been invited to nominate new member prospects from all seven geographic districts. In addition, all members within ACDA-MN will have an opportunity to nominate new members by sending contact information directly to Bruce W. Becker, ACDA-MN Executive Director at:  execdirector@acda-mn.org with the following nomination information:

  • Name of new member prospect
  • Institution Served
  • Email Address


FMC 135th Anniversary Concert

FMC 135th Anniversary Concert

On Sunday, November 20, 2022, thousands of enthusiastic choral music patrons from Minnesota’s “Land of 10,000 Choirs” will descend upon Orchestra Hall in downtown Minneapolis to celebrate the 151st birth anniversary of F. Melius Christiansen, the “father of a cappella choral singing in North America” and founder of the famed St. Olaf Choir. These six distinguished choirs will gather to commemorate this milestone occasion:

  • The Augsburg Choir, Kristina Boerger, conductor
  • The Concordia Choir, Michael Culloton, conductor
  • Concordia University Christus Chorus, David Mennicke, conductor
  • The Gustavus Choir, Brandon Dean, conductor
  • The St. Olaf Choir, Anton Armstrong, conductor
  • National Lutheran Choir, David Cherwien, conductor

The 151st Anniversary Concert will be a significant event in Minnesota’s rich choral music history, one that not only celebrate the ongoing legacy of F. Melius Christiansen, but will also raise funds for the F. Melius Christiansen (FMC) Endowment Fund, named in his honor, that provides scholarships and financial support to this generation of choral music leaders and their students.

It was a similar benefit concert that launched our F. Melius Christiansen Endowment Fund in 1996. Since then, we’ve awarded scholarships to 514 Minnesota choral directors and their students totaling more than $292,936. This event will create an unforgettable concert celebration and will ensure that qualified and deserving members and students always have the financial help needed to pursue their professional goals in choral music education and performance.


If you are interested in offering your time to volunteer with any ACDA-MN event or activity, please contact Executive Director Bruce W. Becker at:  execdirector@acda-mn.org.

We are seeking volunteer leadership positions with State Honor Choirs, State Conference, Summer Dialogue, Interest Session presentations, and future leadership with our Repertoire and Resource (R&R) positions, along with our State Board of Directors.


If you have moved to a new home or work address, please contact the ACDA national membership office with this information at:  405.232.8161 x 110.

With ACDA-MN now using the ACDA national membership roster for our state organization, it’s important that members revise and update their contact information.