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Nashville Mayor Bill Purcell and vocal coach Renee Grant-Williams announced today the formation of Music City Community Chorus (MC3), a non-profit, broad-based volunteer performing chorus in Nashville. As the group's conductor, Grant-Williams' goal for the chorus is to give both professional and non-professional singers in Nashville a chance to participate in a community musical experience, building a bridge between the various genres of music that flourish within Nashville's music community.

"I envision MC3 as the people's chorus of Nashville," says Grant-Williams. "There are so many talented people in this city that we don't ever see and hear perform. This organization will provide them that opportunity."

Mayor Bill Purcell feels, "Now, with the formation of the Music City Community Chorus we have additional opportunities for the local music community and citizens of Nashville to come together."

The chorus will be open to anyone 18 years of age or older. Auditions will be structured to recruit not only those who are skilled at reading music, but those who are willing and able to acquire music skills. Grant-Williams is already holding auditions, which began August 2.

"I'm so excited about the news of the chorus, because Nashville is sorely lacking and needs to have a community chorus opportunity," says singer/musician John Cowan. "The fact that the chorus will be in the hands of Renee Grant-Williams tells me it will be guided by a consummate professional who has the resources to guarantee excellence."

It is Grant-Williams' plan to have two performances per year. The Winter performance will follow rehearsals that take place September through December and the Spring performance will follow rehearsals that take place late January through May. Auditions will be held again in January.

The repertoire will be primarily, but not limited to, classical choral works in the tradition of the great composers. Whenever possible and appropriate, solo assignments will be extended to members of Nashville's non-classical community. As dictated by programming and budget, all performances will be accompanied by the appropriate professional caliber instrumentalists.

Music City Community Chorus will include a scholarship program of four $850 voice scholarships for section leaders representing 10 private lessons to study with one of Grant-Williams' associate teachers.

Grant-Williams established a similar program when she lived in San Francisco, where she was hired by the Community Music Center to form a city-wide broad-based community chorus. Very quickly, the San Francisco Community Chorus became a highly respected, highly disciplined performing choral ensemble of 200 dedicated enthusiasts that presented polished, sold-out performances.

MC3 will rehearse at Glencliff High School at 160 Antioch Pike. To arrange an audition, call 887-5599.

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