About the Chorus
The Springfield Symphony Chorus is an unpaid professional group of singers from throughout the greater CT River Valley. The Chorus is associated with the Springfield Symphony Orchestra which performs at Springfield Symphony Hall. The Orchestra and Chorus collaborate on works throughout each season. The Chorus also performs in concerts on its own with our accompanist, chamber orchestras, and other artists. Auditions for the Springfield Symphony Chorus are typically held in September and January.
If you love singing and being part of exciting live performances, possess a basic knowledge of music notation and would like to work with over 100 others who share your passion, consider joining the Springfield Symphony Chorus! It’s a great way to meet new people and keep music in your life!
Springfield Symphony Chorus Director
Coach/accompanist, piano soloist, singer, and conductor Nikki Stoia is known for her musical versatility, with repertoire that encompasses traditional and contemporary classical and popular music. Her concert work has taken her to many U.S. cities, including New York, Washington, San Francisco and Honolulu, and as accompanist for the Smith College Chamber Singers, she appeared in concerts in London, Paris, Berlin, and Stockholm, among others. Ms. Stoia’s performance as piano soloist with the Massachusetts Wind Orchestra of Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue and her duo-piano recital with conductor Raymond Harvey (Kalamazoo Symphony) have been aired by National Public Radio. She has also appeared in performances at various U.S. and Canadian venues as a member of the “Bob Becker Ensemble” and has performed as collaborative pianist in concerts at International Tuba and Euphonium, International Trumpet Guild, and Percussive Arts Society conferences.
Ms. Stoia recently retired as Associate Dean of Undergraduate Education for the College of Humanities and Fine Arts as well as Senior Lecturer II and Music Honors Program Director in the Department of Music and Dance at UMass Amherst. She was a four-time Distinguished Teacher Award nominee and a 2006 Outstanding Academic Advisor Award winner at the University.
From Fall 2003 through March 2005 she was the Music Director, conductor, and pianist for all the premieres and subsequent performances of the opera The Captivation of Eunice Williams (music by Paula Kimper, libretto by Harley Erdman, conceived with Linda McInerney, Stage Director). Having served as accompanist for the Springfield (MA) Symphony Chorus for nineteen years, Ms. Stoia is now in her seventeenth year as Music Director/Conductor of this ensemble. In the summer of 2008, she served as Head Vocal Coach and Chorus Master for the opera program, Italian Operatic Experience, in Urbania, Italy.
Ms. Stoia is the Founder and Director of the Western Massachusetts Singers for Survivors, a chorus of cancer survivors and caregivers, which performs in the Western Massachusetts area to bring attention to cancer survival and support fundraising activities for cancer care. She is the Director and serves on the Steering Committee of the UMass Unions United Labor Chorus.
She holds a Master of Music degree in Vocal Accompanying and Chamber Music from UMass Amherst, acknowledged as a Phi Kappa Phi graduate, and is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Smith College, where she majored in Music and German.
History of the Springfield Symphony Chorus
The Springfield Symphony Chorus was founded in the 1944-1945 concert season to join the one-year old Springfield Symphony Orchestra in its performance of Brahms’ “Schicksalslied” on April 22, 1945. The Chorus has performed continuously since then with the Orchestra as well as in its own performances. The chorus was originally under the directorship of Alexander Leslie, the founder of the Springfield Symphony Orchestra. Today, under the baton of Chorus Director Nikki Stoia, the 80-member chorus continues its collaboration with the SSO, as well as presenting choral recitals in the greater Springfield area, and other venues.