Kennedy quits Master Chorale after one season

By Lawrence A. Johnson

Karen Kennedy

Karen Kennedy has resigned her post as artistic director of the Master Chorale of South Florida after less than one year on the job.

In a released statement by the Chorale, Kennedy cited an “intense” travel schedule that would only allow her two weeks to rehearse the Chorale’s programs next season. She also cited her duties as director of choral studies at the University of Miami’s Frost School of Music. (The two previous Master Chorale artistic directors also held the same Frost position concurrently.)

The timing is unfortunate, since the Master Chorale is set to mark its tenth anniversary next April.

Founded a decade ago from members of the Florida Philharmonic Orchestra Chorus after the Philharmonic went bankrupt, the Chorale quickly established a strong reputation under the direction of Jo-Michael Scheibe for polished performances and adventurous programming. Scheibe departed in 2008 for California, and Joshua Habermann, Scheibe’s successor, left in 2011 after three seasons to take up a post as director of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra Chorus.

In this tenth anniversary season, the 120-member Chorale is presenting fall performance of Carmina Burana at Festival Miami and an April program in which all three former music directors will participate, along with appearances in Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Cleveland Orchestra in November and March, respectively.

The Master Chorale has appointed a search committee to find a new artistic director.

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Wed Aug 29, 2012
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