The Central Chamber Chorale was organized in 1971 by Dr. Jerry Schroeder, music instructor at the
University of Wisconsin-Marshfield/Wood County (now University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point at Marshfield). A small, core group of Marshfield and Wisconsin Rapids singers performed the first concert. Other central Wisconsin residents from Medford, Curtiss, Auburndale, Spencer, Stratford, Neillsville, Pittsville, Owen and Loyal have subsequently joined the Chorale at various times. The current director, Hana Worsham, is the ninth since the group’s inception.
The Central Chamber Chorale presents major choral literature, sacred and secular, accompanied and
unaccompanied, from all musical periods, for central Wisconsin communities. Two concert series are
performed each year, in the fall and spring. The two regular sites for each concert series are Wisconsin Rapids and Marshfield, with a third site alternating between Abbotsford and Medford. Membership is by audition. Rehearsals are on Monday evenings at First Presbyterian Church, Marshfield. The size of the group has varied from 25 to 50 singers who come from a wide variety of ages, backgrounds and musical experiences. But when these different people come together, it is to learn not only the notes and rhythms, but to strive for the heart of the musical message. This is the joy the Chorale hopes to bring to singers and listeners alike.
Highlights from the Chorale’s history include an American Bicentennial concert with guest conductor
Robert DeCormeir, a performance at the Wisconsin Choral Directors Association convention, and several broadcasts on Wisconsin Public Radio. Larger works performed by the group (some with orchestra and guest soloists) have included Bach’s "Sing Ye to the Lord," Cantata BWV 4, and Mass in B minor; Mozart’s "Regina Coeli," "Requiem" and "Missa brevis" in F; Hayden’s "Creation"; Honegger’s "King David"; Britten’s "Rejoice in the Lamb"; Vaughn Williams’ Mass in G minor; Pinkham’s "Wedding Cantata"; Copland’s "In the Beginning"; Rutter’s "Gloria"; and Forrest’s "Requiem for the Living." Additionally, a myriad of shorter choral pieces from the Renaissance through the 20th century have found their places in Chorale programs.
Support for Central Chamber Chorale comes through an annual fund drive in November, voluntary membership contributions and audience donations at concerts. An endowment fund provides additional funding and grant applications are frequently made to help fund special activities. It has been Chorale policy never to charge admission, thus making our concerts accessible to anyone who wishes to attend. In-kind support includes most concert sites.
Hana Worsham, Director
A native of Spencer, Wisconsin, Hana Worsham graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater with a degree in choral music education. She directed an a cappella student group, and conducted church choirs in Whitewater and Nebraska. She has taught voice, piano and guitar lessons in different capacities since 2012, and also plays the French horn.
Hana returned to central Wisconsin in 2023. She and her husband, Daniel, enjoy sharing their love of music with their three daughters.
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Tiffany Leffel, Accompanist
Tiffany Leffel is an experienced accompanist, having accompanied high school and church choirs since 1991. She has also at various times worked with university students, music departments, musical theater productions and church congregations. She taught piano lessons for more than 20 years. She joined the chorale as accompanist in 2023.