PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The Berkshire Concert Choir is pleased to announce the appointment of Carlton Maaia II as their Artistic Director for 2011-2012, their 34th season. A classically-oriented composer, pianist and organist, who also spends much of his time playing and writing jazz, Mr. Maaia seeks to offer the best from a wide range of musical sources. He is very interested in the work of Berkshire-based composers and also in presenting lesser-known or forgotten works by 19th century composers. Always committed to the educational aspect of music, Mr. Maaia plans to build a student presence into The Berkshire Concert Choir’s long and distinguished tradition. Beginning in September, he will also be the new Director of Music at the First Church of Christ in Pittsfield, Congregational, on East Street.
The Berkshire Concert Choir is a community and social choir of singers from Berkshire County and surrounding communities. The mission of The Berkshire Concert Choir is to present the finest choral literature from all musical periods, striving always for excellence in performance and providing an opportunity to members of the community to express and develop their musical talents and interests. Membership is open to all persons at varying levels of experience and skill who are committed to hard work and the joy of singing. Rehearsals begin on Wednesday, September 14, at 7:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Room of the First Church of Christ in Pittsfield, Congregational, on East Street. For more information, please contact Michael Gerhard at (413) 442-6120, or e-mail him at Michael.E.Gerhard@lmco.com
Mr. Maaia was the 2010-2011 Musician-in-Residence at the Scarritt-Bennett Center in Nashville, Tennessee, where he helped charter “Vespers…and All That Jazz!,” a jazz-based evening prayer service held each Sunday night in SBC’s Wightman Chapel. He is currently the Music Supervisor for that program, hiring and preparing musicians as well as composing and arranging all musical selections. He returns there periodically to teach and present workshops.
From 2005 to 2010, he was the Fine Arts Coordinator at Memorial United Methodist Church in White Plains, N.Y., and before that was the Music Director at St. Mark’s Church in Pittsfield. While at St. Mark’s, he also served as the Associate Organist at The National Shrine of the Divine Mercy in Stockbridge, Mass. He has served as interim organist and choir director at numerous area churches and has directed music and accompanied dozens of student musical and theatrical productions in and out of Berkshire County. Since 2005, Mr. Maaia has directed music productions at The Berkshire Theatre Group. He is currently preparing that company’s community production of The Wizard of Oz for The Colonial Theatre on September 9, 10, and 11.
From 2000 to 2003, Mr. Maaia was the resident Music Director for the Berkshire Youth Theater Ensemble, based in Chatham N.Y. From 2003 to 2005, he was the Music Supervisor for Cheesecake Charlie’s Cabaret in Great Barrington, Mass., and in 2004 was a répétiteur for The Shaker Mountain Opera Co.
Michael E. Gerhard
President, Berkshire Concert Choir
89 Stratford Ave.
Pittsfield, MA 01201-7034