Winner of the 2014 Mayor’s Richard Hay Arts Organization Award!
This award recognizes an arts group that has made significant contributions to Lincoln’s art community over a period of years.
It is provided through a bequest to the Lincoln Arts Council from the late Dr. Richard Hay. Read more here.
Vision and Mission…
The Lincoln Boys Choir consists of organized choral groups which promote healthy, lifetime singing skills through musical performance and strive to:
- instill a sense of self-confidence and achievement through a commitment to excellence;
- promote fellowship among boys from different schools and backgrounds; and
- provide educational and enrichment opportunities through domestic and international travel and performance.
The Choirs also exists to make a visible and worthwhile contribution to the cultural climate of the city of Lincoln, the state of Nebraska, and beyond. Currently in its eleventh year, the Lincoln Boy's Choir's vision is to become a regionally premier performing group.
Choir members, currently 120 boys ranging in age from 8-17, perform in one of three groups: the Cantare and Chorale, both under the direction of Burton Schernikau, and the Concert Choir, under the direction of Kevin Scheele. Each group provides rehearsal, performance and travel experiences that enrich the lives of the performers as well as their audiences. The choirs are also blessed with very talented accompanists Karen Karr Ammons and Julie Schumacher.
Background and History…
The history of the Lincoln Boys Choir dates back to 1952 when the Choir was sponsored by the Lincoln Public Schools. Until 1968, the Choir, under the direction of Dr. Hugh Rangeler, provided hundreds of boys a myriad of educational opportunities through performances and travel.
In 2002, the Lincoln Scottish Rite Preservation Foundation expressed an interest in doing something more for young people. An officer of the Scottish Rite, who had been a member of the Lincoln Boys Choir in the 1950s, suggested re-establishing a boys choir in Lincoln and the Foundation agreed. The Lincoln Boys Choir is now an incorporated entity in its own right, and the Scottish Rite continues to provide space for the Choir’s rehearsals and special events. The Choir’s early successes have permitted rapid growth of the organization and have drawn the attention of notable conductors and the performing arts community.
The choirs make 8 to 10 appearances per semester at various community events and locales, and also present two concerts of their own each year. Recent invitations to perform have included:
- Governor’s Inaugural Ball
- Nebraska State Quarter Launch
- Lincoln Stars Hockey Game
- Lincoln Salt Dogs Game
- UNL Men’s Varsity Glee Concert
- National Orff Convention
- Holidays in the Haymarket
- Capitol Tree Lighting Ceremony
- Nebraska Holocaust Commemoration
- Worlds of Fun Festival of Choirs
In June 2006, the Chorale was one of a select few choirs invited to perform in Austria at the International Youth Choir Festival, a celebration of the 250th anniversary of Mozart's birth. Recognizing the benefit of such trips to its members, the Choir is developing a policy to take part in major travel events every year or two. In the summer of 2008, the Chorale and Cantare choirs participated at the Festival of States in New York City. This past summer the boys traveled to Rome, Italy!
Board of Directors…
The Lincoln Boys Choir is incorporated as a not-for-profit organization and is a 501(c)(3) entity. It is governed by a Board of Directors that is charged with broad management of the organization. The board prepares the by-laws of the organization, makes major policy decisions, and conducts major fundraising initiatives. It has oversight of Lincoln Boys Choir employees and of the organization’s budget. Members of the board were selected for their interest in music and their support of the goals of the Lincoln Boys Choir, and for their community influence, professional expertise and their ability to encourage the development of the Lincoln Boys Choir’s reputation and standing in the community, the region, and beyond.
Though the Lincoln Boys Choir is governed by a Board of Directors, it is supported by active parent volunteers and committees. LBC parents are extremely important to this organization and are encouraged to participate. Parental assistance with fundraisers, event planning, web information, publicity, music inventory, uniform orders, and chaperoning keep this organization exciting and full of fun, new ideas every year. Parents who participate on committees or help on an as-needed basis allow the organization to save money, keeping families’ costs lower. It also encourages the boys to stay involved, and gives parents a chance to get to know other members and their families.