Alan L. Baker, D.M.A.
Artistic Director - Conductor
An Associate Professor of Music at Bloomsburg University, Alan Baker has served as the Society's Artistic Director since its formation in 1999. Conducting the Society's Symphonic Chorus and the adult chamber ensemble, the Choral Artists of Northeast Pennsylvania, he also guides and performs with the acclaimed professional vocal ensemble, The Lyric Consort.
From 1994-1998, Dr. Baker served as the Artistic Director of the Wyoming Valley Children's Chorus, and coordinated the choral/vocal programs of the Encore Music Camp of Pennsylvania. In 1999, he assumed similar responsibilities with the Young Artists program of Wyoming Seminary's summer Performing Arts Institute in Kingston, Pennsylvania.
A native of Springfield, Missouri; Dr. Baker holds advanced degrees from Temple and Stanford Universities, and has taught on the faculties of Temple University, California State University-Chico, Glassboro State College, and Wilkes University, where as Director of Choral and Vocal Program from 1993-1997, he founded the University's Opera Workshop and Early Music Ensemble and was honored in 1996 with an "Outstanding Faculty" designation from the School of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences. In 2002, he was similarly honored with the "Dean's Salute to Excellence" from Bloomsburg University's College of Arts and Sciences.
Dr. Baker has served as president of the Pennsylvania Collegiate Choral Association and the Repertoire and Standards Chair for Male Choruses with Pennsylvania ACDA. He presently serves the executive committee of the latter organization as its treasurer, and has twice been invited to sit on the choral/opera review panel for the PA Council on the Arts. Dr. Baker has recorded for Lyrichord Records with the studio ensemble, Schola Discantus, for Stanford University Recordings, and most recently with The Lyric Consort for WVIA and Lyric Discs. He has conducted high-school and middle-school honor choruses throughout northeastern Pennsylvania, and as a pedagogue, his students have been selected to national honor choruses and conducting competitions, as well as some of the country's most prestigious graduate programs.
Susan M. Kelly
Director of Children's and Youth Programs - Conductor
A native of Plains, Pennsylvania, Susan M. Kelly is summa cum laude graduate of Wilkes University, where she attended on a full-tuition Trustee Scholarship, and gained degrees in Music Education and English Education. While at Wilkes, Susan was president of the Wilkes chapter of MENC and president of the Pennsylvania Division of Collegiate MENC, receiving the Collegiate MENC Professional Achievement Award in 1994. In 1999, Susan completed a Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting and Vocal Performance at Temple University, where she was also a recipient of a full teaching assistantship in the Aural Theory Department. During her years at Temple, Susan was selected to be the conducting apprentice of the Mendelssohn Club of Philadelphia. Following graduation, Susan served as a one-year visiting instructor of music at Bloomsburg University. Currently, Susan is a candidate for a DMA in Choral Conducting at the University of South Carolina.
From 2000-2005, Susan taught chorus and general music to grades 7-12 at Mid Valley Secondary Center. In those five years, the program grew from 25 singers to over 200 singers, encompassing 5 choirs: Junior-High Men, Junior-High Women, High-School Mixed, Varsity Women's Choir, and Varsity Men's Choir. Under her direction, the Varsity Women's Choir won 6 consecutive superior ratings at both Music in the Parks Festivals and Classic Festivals, including an award for best overall choir. In 2005, Susan became the Director of Choirs at Abington Heights High School, where she directs the 150-voice Concert Choir, the Women's Ensemble, the Men's Ensemble, the Mixed Ensemble, and is music director for the musical theatre productions. All choirs have consistently received superior ratings in choral adjudications. Additionally, the Concert Choir performed with the Northeastern Pennsylvania Philharmonic during their 2009-2010 season.
Outside of her public-school work, Susan is the Director of Children's and Youth Programs of The Choral Society of NEPA and conductor of its Cantare Choir. Under her direction, the Cantare Choir embarked on a tour of Wales and England and was selected to perform on both the 2001 Summer ACDA-PA Conference and the 2007 PMEA State Conference. The Choral Society is also involved in the performance of and commissioning of new music, most recently commissioning two choral pieces for Cantare from composer Daniel Kallman, which premiered in May of 2005.
Additionally, Susan is the Director of Music at the First Presbyterian Church of Clarks Summit where she directs the 30-voice Adult Choir and the 20-voice Teen Choir. She is a member of the 8-voice professional vocal ensemble The Lyric Consort, which was a featured performer at the 2001 Eastern Division ACDA Conference and has performed on numerous concert series, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Johns Hopkins University, Bucknell University, and Dartmouth College. Susan has served on the faculty of the Wilkes University Community Conservatory as a voice instructor and on the summer faculty of the Performing Arts Institute of Wyoming Seminary. As a guest conductor, Susan has conducted the Zone 6 Area All-State Women's Chorus of NYSSMA and PMEA District 9 Song Fest. Susan has served as the ACDA-PA state chair of Repertoire and Standards for Middle-School and Junior-High School Choirs. In that capacity, she presented Junior-High Reading Sessions at the 2006 and 2007 State PMEA Conferences and hosted three statewide Junior-High Honor Choirs at the summer ACDA-PA conference. Currently, she serves as ACDA-PA state secretary.
Leslie Mason Moran
Leslie Mason Moran is a graduate of the University of Hartford's Hartt School of Music where she obtained certification in the Kodaly method of music instruction. She has completed additional studies through Villanova University and the University of the Arts. Leslie is the Band and Choral Director at the Mid Valley Elementary Center in Throop, Pennsylvania, and serves as an adjunct faculty member in applied voice at Marywood University. Through her teaching at Mid Valley, she has presented programs on teaching music to children at PMEA (Pennsylvania Music Educators Association) and PAFPC (Pennsylvania Association of Federal Programs Coordinators) conferences. Additionally, she has performed at ACDA state and regional conferences. She is a staff member for the Choral Society of Pennsylavania, directing the youngest ensemble, Cantus Novus, and the middle school ensemble, Kantorei. She has prepared Kantorei to perform several Holiday Concerts with the NEPA Philharmonic under the direction of Lawrence Loh. Leslie has also served as accompanist for the Choral Society, and has appeared as a soloist with its' adult Symphonic Chorus. Recently, she appeared as a soloist with the Marywood University Campus Choir in their performance of Faure's Requiem, She is a member of the professional vocal ensemble, The Lyric Consort, and served for many years as a voice teacher for the Wilkes University Community Conservatory, the Marywood School of Continuing Education, and as a faculty member for the Performing Arts Institute's Young Artists' Program of Wyoming Seminary.
Mrs. Moran resides in Scranton with her very supportive husband and four amazing children.
Linda Phillips Orseck
Singing with the community choral groups in Northeastern Pennsylvania since her high school years, Linda received her first musical training studying piano as a child with Bronis Voveris and later as a student and graduate student at Wilkes College with Anne Vanko Liva and Richard Chapline. In addition, she has attended conferences/master classes on conducting and choral singing with John Rutter, Leonard Slatkin, Robert Shaw and "Chanticleer". She serves as accompanist for the children's choruses of the Choral Society of NEPA and section leader and assistant conductor for its adult symphonic choir. In addition, Linda is also active in local musical and theatrical organizations, portraying on-stage roles for some productions, and serving as musical director and pianist for others. In past years she has served on the boards of Community Concerts in Wilkes-Barre, Wyoming Valley Oratorio Society and the Music Box Dinner Playhouse as well as the Wyoming Valley Council of Churches. Her professional affiliations include MENC, PMEA, PSEA, CRCCM, NPM and ACDA. A former director of liturgical music at St. Peter's Cathedral in Scranton, Linda has worked since 1970 as a director of music for churches throughout Luzerne and Lackawanna County. Currently employed as a choral director and teacher in the Mid Valley School District, Linda also serves as Director of Music and Liturgy for St. Rose Parish in Carbondale. She resides in Scranton and continues to maintain an active piano and voice studio in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Area.
Ron received his first musical lessons at the age of five from Michael Hoysock, his grandfather. He was later a student of Anne Vanko Liva in Scranton, PA. In 1995 he received a Bachelor of Music degree from Wilkes University, where he was a student of Thomas Hrynkiw. He has been featured as piano soloist with orchestras including the Schuylkill Symphony Orchestra (Pottsville, PA) in 1991 and 1996 and the Wyoming Seminary/Performing Arts Institute Civic Symphony Orchestra (Kingston,PA) in 2008. Ron has spent many summers accompanying and
teaching at Encore Music Camp of Pennsylvania and Performing Arts Institute of Wyoming Seminary in Kingston, PA. Ron has performed in Arizona, New Mexico, Michigan, Ohio, Illinois and throughout the Northeast. Outside the United States, he has played in Germany, Spain, England and Belgium. From 2004-2008, Ron worked extensively on a series of performances of the complete Beethoven Violin Sonatas with violinist Sophie Till. In January 2007, he began presenting a series of music performances, primarily but not exclusively focused on improvisation, in Wilkes-Barre, PA. He received Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts Project Grants in 2007 and 2008 for this series. Since 2000, Ron has been studying the Taubman Approach to piano playing with Edna Golandsky in New York City. He is also a piano student
of Ilya Itin. His mentors in the art of improvisation include Bill Dixon in Vermont and Joel Futterman in Virginia. He also studies jazz through correspondence with Charlie Banacos. Ron was the 2008 recipient of the F. Lammot Belin Arts Scholarship.
Jessica Hitchcock, a native of Clarks Summit, PA, is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Mansfield University, where she earned a degree in vocal performance. At Mansfield, she studied voice under Dr. Youngsuk Kim and Dr. Pamela Kurau and was a member of the Mansfield University Concert Choir and the Mansfieldians, Mansfield University's select chamber/jazz choir. With these groups and others, Jessica has sung in many parts of the United States, as well as Austria, Germany, Greece, Bulgaria and Turkey. Jessica is an experienced soprano soloist and was one of the winners in the 2007 Mansfield University Concerto Competition. Currently, Jessica owns and operates the Vocal Studio of Jessica Hitchcock, which offers private voice and piano lessons. She is also a section leader and frequent soloist for the Choral Society of Northeastern Pennsylvania. Jessica has also been a soloist at weddings and other events in both the NEPA area and beyond.
Francis C. McMullen
Francis Carroll McMullen received his degree from Wilkes College, where he studied tuba with Jerome Campbell and voice with Richard Chapline. McMullen has been featured as a lyric baritone soloist with the Wyoming Valley Oratorio Society, the Singers' Guild of Scranton, the Wyoming County Chorale, the Sullivan County Chorale, the College Misericordia Choral Society, and the Choral Society of Northeast Pennsylvania. McMullen also sings with the renowned Lyric Consort, which he co-founded, and is a member of the Quartet of St. Luke's Episcopal Church in Scranton.
Fran can also be found occasionally in saloons and bowling alleys in the company of a gang of men known variously as "Four Men and an Alto," a notorious male a cappella group in the tradition of the Revellers, Comedian Harmonists, Hudson Shad, and other "disturbers of the peace." McMullen is the Technical Director at the F.M. Kirby Center in Wilkes-Barre, has been part-time classical music host for WVIA-FM, and has been an adjunct instructor of music at Wilkes College and College Misericordia.
Tenor Jason Brocious is a section leader with the Choral Society of Northeast Pennsylvania and the choir of Trinity Episcopal Church, Pottsville. He has appeared in concert with Scranton's Mostly Opera and has performed leading and supporting roles in the operas of Puccini, Bizet, Menotti, and Strauss, Jr. with regional opera companies including Northeast Pennsylvania Opera, Capitol Opera Harrisburg, and OperaWorks, Inc. of Pottsville. Also an accomplished oratorio soloist, Jason has appeared with the Schuylkill Choral Society, the Choral Arts Society of the Upper Perkiomen Valley, and the York Youth Symphony.
Jason has been honored to sing as a guest with The Lyric Consort and has appeared as a soloist in the Cadet Chapel at the United States Military Academy at West Point. He has used his talents selflessly throughout the years to support various charities, organizing and performing in several concerts and recitals to benefit organizations such as the American Cancer Society, Heartspring, and Oasis Youth Centers. His biggest enjoyment comes from working with the devoted and talented students at Blue Mountain High School, where he serves as the assistant director and vocal coach of their musical productions.
A native of Schuylkill County, Jason is a Certified Public Accountant and works as an accounting manager for Providence Service Corporation, a nationwide human services provider based in Tucson, Arizona. He also maintains a small tax practice from his home in Gordon, where he resides with his wife, Francine.