CARLINVILLE - Blackburn College Department of Music and Theatre will be hosting a Choral Festival Monday, March 2, 2020. The festival will consist of two open rehearsals with the Blackburn College Choir and guest conductor Kevin McBeth. The open rehearsals will be from 2:30-4:00pm and 4:30- 6:00pm in Bothwell Auditorium. We invite all church and school choirs to join us and observe the process of working with an acclaimed conductor.

The Blackburn College Choir is comprised of Blackburn students, Blackburn faculty and staff, and singers from Carlinville and surrounding communities. The Choir will be rehearsing John Leavitt’s mass Missa Festiva with Kevin McBeth in the open rehearsals.

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Kevin McBeth was appointed Director of the IN UNISON Chorus in 2011. McBeth is the Director of Music at Manchester United Methodist Church in suburban St. Louis. Over the past 20 years, he has conducted honor, festival, and touring choirs (choral and handbell) in the United States and Canada. Previous appointments include Assistant Conductor of the St. Louis Symphony Chorus and Music Director of the St. Louis Metro Singers. His 30-year career in church music has included appointments in churches in Houston, Texas, and Cedar Rapids, Iowa. McBeth is a graduate of Houston Baptist University, and has done graduate studies in Choral Conducting at the University of Houston.

McBeth has conducted concerts at Carnegie Hall and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. McBeth has prepared choruses for performances with Sarah Brightman, Josh Groban, John McDaniel, Andy Williams, Billy Porter, Take 6, Larnelle Harris, Jenifer Lewis, Wintley Phipps, and Hugh Smith. In the fall of 2002, the National Religious Music Week Alliance named him as one of the top ten Church Music Directors in the country. In the church music field, he has collaborated with Mark Hayes, John Leavitt, Hal Hopson, Joseph Martin, Howard Helvey, John Purifoy, Michael Burkhardt, Craig Courtney, David Morrow, and Jeffery Ames.

The Blackburn College Choir is directed by Dr. Joseph Welch. The Choir is accompanied by Dr. See Tsai Chan. The rehearsals are free and open to the public. For more information about the upcoming concert and other music and theatre events at Blackburn College, call (217) 854-5704 or email

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