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The Chorus

The Medina Chorus is a non-profit regional choral ensemble originally formed in 1935 as a Messiah Chorus.  The impetus was to offer area high school students and community singers the opportunity to perform  Handel's oratorio at Christmas.   The WW II years were lean years in the men's sections, but the Chorus endured.  Eventually a spring season was launched and the ensemble performed lighter musical numbers in May.

Since 1991, the ensemble has performed a number of ambitious, large-work programs.   It replaced a volunteer orchestra, engaging professional instrumentalists in an ensemble scaled to specific program needs.  Noted area professionals from the teaching faculty at northern Ohio universities provide solo voices in these larger works.  Chorus members have enjoyed the occasional venture into these performances.  They help to raise the bar acoustically as well as artistically.

Medina Chorus singers are not auditioned.  The ability to read music and have some understanding of it is helpful.  They are dedicated singers who volunteer their time to help the Chorus meet its operational and logistical needs.  Members purchase their music through the organization.  We are reliant on patrons, grants, advertisers and gifts for operating expenses. 

The Chorus performs two major concerts each year, with additional concerts at the Western Reserve Senior Residence and caroling at the Medina Home.  When possible, we have accepted invitations to sing at community events. 

This is the testament to the importance of music in our lives.  The Chorus is a volunteer performing arts ensemble which has continued to provide singers in the community a place to express what is in our souls.   Despite challenging economic times and the societal upheaval of wars, we have endured since 1935. 

Our Director, Kurt Sauer

Mr. Sauer is a graduate in music education from Heidelberg College. He has studied choral conducting at the Masters level at Kent State, Cleveland State, Bemidji State universities, and the State University of New York. Among his important choral teachers are Ferris Ohl, Paul Christiansen, René Clausen, Robert Shaw and Robert Page.

For many years Mr. Sauer sang with the Blossom Festival and the Cleveland Orchestra Choruses as well as the Blossom Festival Chamber Choir. Appearances with the COC at Carnegie Hall, and winning a Grammy under Lorin Maazel's direction for the recording of Gershwin's Porgy and Bess (the first complete, with an all black cast) are but some of the highlights he counts as significant musical events. Additionally, his onstage performances with conductors Robert Shaw, Robert Page, Leonard Bernstein, Lorin Maazel, Eugene Ormandy, Clayton Krehbiel, and Pierre Boulez are highly influential in his musical life.

Mr. Sauer is a life-long music educator and is numerously listed in Who's Who Among America's Teachers. He is the recipient of numerous scholarships and awards, and has served as a trustee for the Medina County Arts Council, a local arts advocacy organization. For thirty-two years he served as choir director for area churches.

In 1991 Sauer was invited to direct the Medina Chorus, and he counts among his achievements: renewed awareness in community singing, increased membership in this historic ensemble, challenging singers artistically and expanding the Chorus' repertoire.

Pianist, Cathy Fafrak

Cathy Fafrak is a cum laude graduate of Capital University's Conservatory of Music, where she studied piano, organ, voice, chamber music and accompanying. After Graduation, she accompanied many vocal and instrumental groups at Capital University, The Ohio State University, and elsewhere throughout the greater Central Ohio area. Miss Fafrak currently serves as the organist at the United Church of Christ, Congregational, on Medina's Square.