Photos Provided by Fishers Community Chorus
“Are you an adult who loves to sing? That’s all you need to be to join the Fishers Community Chorus,” says founder Marc Feeney. It is an all-adult, come-as-you-are, no-audition group. The choir is well known for its rapid growth, warm sounds and big heart for community service.
The chorus is an ensemble of Fishers Music Works, a local non-profit organization that helps Fishers residents experience the joy of music and community engagement. Seven different Fishers Music Works ensembles reflect a spectrum of musical genres and participant expertise. As one of these music ensembles, Fishers Community Chorus serves the community’s musical interests and has the expertise of professional musicians ensuring its success.
When the Fishers Community Chorus was founded in fall 2015, there were only 18 singers. During the ensemble’s most recent season, more than 70 singers took the stage. It is hoped that more new singers will join when the chorus begins rehearsals for their upcoming 2018-2019 season in early September.
Schuyler Brinson served as the director of the Fishers Community Chorus for the last two seasons and is a professional pianist, organist and conductor.
“The chorus is special to me because we have singers with varying degrees of musical experience and backgrounds who participate,” Brinson says. “Although we come with different abilities, we still have a common goal – to create beautiful and meaningful choral music.”
The chorus doesn’t just sing, they serve the community too. In May, the Fishers Community Chorus partnered with the Fishers Youth Assistance program to raise donations for the Summer Meals program that serves 400 local kids. The ensemble sings carols for the patients and staff of Community Hospital North every year. The Fishers Community Chorus also initiated a food drive last December with help from its sponsor, Star Financial Bank. Together, they collected 536 pounds of food and products for the Delaware Township and Fall Creek Township food pantries.
Greg Purvis is a Fishers Community Chorus member who helped organize the chorus’ food drive. “The Fishers Community Chorus is a unique asset to Fishers,” Purvis says. “We have people from all walks of life who come together to sing, improve their musical ability and share the joy of music with the community.”
“There is nothing in the world like performing beautiful music with a group of people – it completely touches your soul,” Meier says. “As a busy stay-at-home mom, participating in the Fishers Community Chorus is the one thing that I do for myself. It brings me so much happiness and gives me a sense of purpose outside of motherhood.”
The chorus members feel like they are part of one big family as they rehearse together each week and join their voices together. For Meier, the Fishers Community Chorus is truly a family affair. Her mother and father also sing in the chorus.
“We’re hoping that our other daughter (Bonnie’s twin) and my son also join the chorus soon,” adds Bonnie’s dad, Ed Jacques.
“This is my second season participating in the Fishers Community Chorus,” says soprano Lisa Laughner. “Singing with the chorus has brought a joy back into my life that I had forgotten. My self-confidence has soared through singing. There are chorus members who have shared their love of karaoke with me and now I am hooked on that too.”
Participating in a chorus is hard work but there’s a lot of fun and togetherness as well. Each choir season concludes with a special summer performance and outing. The Fishers Community Chorus recently sang the National Anthem at the start of an Indianapolis Indians baseball game in July. After the National Anthem, the chorus members took over a section of Victory Field to enjoy the baseball game together.
“As the founder of the chorus, my favorite experience has to be singing the National Anthem,” Feeney says. “We had more than 40 singers on the field last year and another 100 family members in the stands. We sang for more than 6,000 people that day, then enjoyed a ‘friends & family’ day at the ballpark. Now the event has become our chorus’ season finale tradition to celebrate the end of our season and look forward to the next.”
Feeney, the ensemble’s leadership team and Fishers Music Works are already planning the upcoming 2018-19 season of the Fishers Community Chorus. The next season’s rehearsals will start in early September and will be open for new members to join at that time.
“Any adult with any level of expertise is welcome to join us and sing,” Feeney says. “We are planning an exciting new season of community performances and we can’t wait to get started this fall.”
Information about joining the Fishers Community Chorus can be found on FishersChorus.org or the Fishers Community Chorus’ Facebook group.