Partnerships and collaborations are one of the key successes to the operation of any nonprofit.  We are pleased to have partnered with the Nashoba Valley Chorale, the Westford Chorus, and the Greater Gardner Community Choir this season and we continually look for more partnerships with other arts organizations throughout Central MA and Southern NH.

The Nashoba Valley Chorale

The Nashoba Valley Chorale is a mixed-voice chorus with 90+ members based in Groton, Massachusetts. Our singers come together from a wide range of towns in Eastern and Central Massachusetts and Southern New Hampshire. Each season we perform choral masterworks with professional soloists and a professional orchestra.

We have performed: Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem, the Verdi Requiem, Gjeilo’s Sunrise Mass, the Mozart Requiem, the Mass in B Minor by J.S. Bach, Orff’s Carmina Burana, and many other major works, under the artistic leadership of conductor Anne Watson Born.

We love making great music together, and we work hard in rehearsals to bring an expressive and thrilling sound to our performances. We are a jovial and friendly group of people from all walks of life who enjoy singing together.

     The Nashoba Valley Chorale is a Greater Boston Choral Consortium member and the Central Massachusetts Choral Consortium.

Anne Watson Born

Anne Watson Born is thrilled to be in her tenth season with the Nashoba Valley Chorale. Under her direction, the Chorale has studied and performed well-known works such as Beethoven’s Mass in C, Haydn’s Creation, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and Handel’s Messiah. In addition, the Chorale has delved into chamber works by Debussy, Barber, and Wolf. Ms. Watson Born is also the Director of Music Ministry at the First Unitarian Society in Newton, where she manages a music program that includes a 30-voice choir, an intergenerational orchestra, various chamber ensembles, a folk/rock band, a family choir, and whatever else happens to pop up. The FUSN choir performs at least one major work per year; recent works include Ernest Bloch’s Sacred Service, Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem, the Faure Requiem, Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, and the premiere of Carson Cooman’s A Difficult Miracle.

Ms. Watson Born for several years was an Assistant Professor at Bristol Community College, where she was also the Composer and Sound Designer for the BCC Theatre Rep company. Shows that she has designed include: The Bacchae, King Stag, and Alice in Wonderland. In addition, she has music-directed Threepenny Opera, Marat/Sade, and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (which is a heck of a combination).

In addition to being the Music Director of the Brookline Chorus for many years, Ms. Watson Born was the founding Artistic Director of both the Women’s Chorus of Boston and the Avenue of the Arts Chorale.  In 2002 she conducted the Boston-area performance of the Rolling Requiem to commemorate the tragedy of September 11.

Ms. Watson Born obtained a master's degree in Choral Conducting from New England Conservatory, where her principal teacher was Lorna Cooke DeVaron. She holds a B.A. degree in Music from the University of the Pacific in Stockton California, where she studied conducting with William Dehning. She has also studied conducting with Helmuth Rilling and Murry Sidlin, composition with John Heiss and Andrew Imbrie, and voice with Jeanne Segal and Michael Strauss. She is a Unitarian Universalist Credentialed Music Leader and serves as Chair of the UUA Music Leadership Certification Committee and as the Lifelong R & R chair of the Massachusetts ACDA chapter. She lives in Jamaica Plain with her husband and two obstreperous dogs.

The Westford Chorus

The Westford Chorus is a SATB community chorus, and a significant cultural community organization, whose mission is to present the widest possible spectrum of choral music to Westford and the surrounding communities and have a whole lotta fun in the process!

Since its founding in 1983, the chorus has transcended the bounds of a community chorus by performing diverse and challenging music from sacred to secular, classical to contemporary. Past performances include works by Bach, Brahms, Faure Requiem, Ralph Vaughn Williams, Samuel Barber, Randall Thompson, Aaron Copland, Eric Whitacre, and music from Broadway. Performances are often accompanied by small orchestra ensembles – or even Flamenco dancers!

Recent works include Faure’s Requiem, Britten’s Ceremony of  Carols, Mozart’s Requiem and Coronation Mass, and Verdi’s Requiem. Our Song and Dance concert included Lullaby of Broadway, Libertango, Let’s Face the Music and Dance, Come Dance with Me, and Dancing Queen. Costumed productions have delivered Gilbert and Sullivan works, and Bizet’s Carmen.

The Chorus has performed with a full orchestra, a swing band, a Bluegrass band, and eclectic groups such as Urban Myth. The season may also include a Pops concert complete with cabaret-style seating. The Westford Chorus also brings music to the residents in area nursing homes and participates in community singing events.

The Chorus is under the direction of Jim Barkovic, and rehearses on Tuesdays, at 7:00 p.m. at the Parish Center for the Arts, 10 Lincoln Street in Westford Center. The membership size of the Chorus averages 30-40 members. The performance season consists of concerts in January and May, performed in venues in Westford and Chelmsford.

Jim Barkovic

Jim is active in the Boston area as a conductor, pianist, organist, and accompanist. In addition to directing the Westford Chorus, he is the Assistant Conductor and Accompanist for the Spectrum Singers.

Jim joined the chorus as Music Director in 2008 and has been enthusiastically received by all the singers for his conducting, teaching, playing skills, and his humorous personality that embraces all members of the chorus.

On the tenth anniversary as Music Director of the chorus, a video was made including testimonials by 10 members of the chorus. To view the tribute to Jim you can click here: Barkovic Anniversary Tribute Video.

Jim also serves as Music Director at West Concord Union Church and Holy Family Parish, both in Concord MA. He is the Chapel Organist at Middlesex School in Concord MA. Jim received his Master of Music in Piano Performance from the New England Conservatory. A native of Minnesota, Jim did his undergraduate work at St. Olaf College, with concentrations in music history and theory.

The Greater Gardner Community Choir

The Greater Gardner Community Choir is a non-auditioned mixed choir open to teens and adults of all backgrounds and abilities from Gardner, MA, and surrounding communities. We sing varied programs of secular, sacred, and popular accompanied choral music, and our Chamber Singers perform an array of acapella works. We are a member of the Central Massachusetts Choral Consortium and a 501c3 non-profit organization. 

Diane Cushing

Diane Cushing is the Founder and Director of The Greater Gardner Community Choir. The Choir started in 1983 at Mount Wachusett Community College and then transferred 14 years ago as an independent group. She also directs the Keene Pops Choir in Keene, NH.  

Diane taught at all the schools in Gardner for 16 years and recently retired from Keene State College after 20 years teaching Private Voice and directing The Concert Choir.  She has performed as a soloist with The Bach Society, Monadnock Chorus, The Hamilton Baroque Ensemble, The Nashua Symphony, and The Masterworks Chorale of Boston.  She was also a member of the Boston Baroque.  She has performed American music at Queen’s College in New York, Newberry College in South Carolina, and Keene State College.  She has also performed in several musicals throughout the region. Diane received a Master's Degree in Voice Performance from Boston Conservatory and studied Graduate Conducting at Syracuse University.