Summer Conference

July 13 and 14, 2015

The University of Alabama | Tuscaloosa, AL

Our Alabama Choral Directors Association Summer Conference will take place on Monday and Tuesday, July 13-14, 2015. Please mark your calendars to reflect these dates. The conference will include much of what we return for year after year: interest sessions by Alabama choral directors, reading sessions that encompass all ACDA R&S areas, food, fellowship, and fun.

NAfME Members: Alabama ACDA will cover ACDA membership for AVA (Alabama Vocal Association) members who are attending the summer conference for the first time. Include a completed ACDA Membership Form with your registration.


Summer Conference 2014 Resources

Registration Form  Conference Schedule

Sonja Sepúlveda
PowerPoint Presentation on African, Spirituals, and Gospel Music.
Marvin Latimer
PowerPoint Presentation on Selecting Appropriate Repertoire.
DeVore & Schaeffer
Handout on Preparing for the First Years of Teaching Choral Music.


Additions to Dr. Sepúlveda's music packet: All Right by Robert Winder and other gospel selections.

2014 Guest Clinicians

Dr. Patrick Freer is Associate Professor of Choral Music Education at Georgia State University in Atlanta where he conducts the University Men's Chorus and the Choral Union.  He holds degrees from Westminster Choir College and Teachers College, Columbia University.  He has guest conducted or presented in 36 states and 17 countries.  Dr. Freer is Academic Editor and Chair of the Editorial Committees for Music Educators Journal and has authored over 80 articles in most of the field's leading national and international journals.  Publications include "Getting Started with Middle School Chorus" (named outstanding Academic Title by Choice) and the DVD series Success for Adolescent Singers. His most recent publications include a chapter in the book “Perspectives on Males and Singing,” articles in the Bulletin of the Council for Research in Music Education, Choral Journal, Middle Grades Research Journal, Arts Education Policy Review, and Philosophy of Music Education Review, and guest editing two issues of Choral Journal focused on male singing from middle school through college.




Sonja Sepúlveda is Director of Choral Activities and Theory at Salem College in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and conducts the Salem Chamber Choir, Chorale, and Jazz Voices.  She came to Salem following positions at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, Kentucky and Brewton Parker College in Mt. Vernon, Georgia.

Graduating from Winthrop University with a Bachelor of Music Education and Master of Music degrees, Sonja Sepúlveda earned a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of South Carolina where she studied under Dr. Larry Wyatt and Dr. Carol Krueger.  She received the William H. Nolte Graduate Assistant Teaching Award from the University of South Carolina in 2006 for her work in conducting and teaching.  While working on her doctorate at USC, she conducted Carolina Alive and the Renaissance Singers. Sonja Sepúlveda is former SC Choral Festival Chairman and served as SC All-State Chairman for four years. She also served as her state ACDA Chairman for Jazz and Show Choirs.


Her choirs have toured Europe, Mexico, and Canada and have performed concerts for the National Cathedral, Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, the Lincoln Center, South Carolina Music Educators Association (SCMEA), National American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), Southern Division ACDA, and the Music Educators National Conference (MENC). She conducted, as well sang choral parts for the ABC mini-series, North and South. Sonja Sepúlveda sang with the Robert Shaw Festival Chorus for eight years,  as well with the Carnegie Hall Chorus in 2000 and 2002.  She is well known for her work with youth choruses and is in demand as a choral adjudicator and clinician.

In 2006, she founded the Palmetto Voices, a choir of alumni students from Western Kentucky University, University of South Carolina, Brewton Parker College, Salem College and Sumter High School.  The choir strives to preserve the legacy of the Negro Spiritual and share the vision that this unique American choral art form is for everyone.  The  Palmetto Voices  sang at the National American Choral Directors Association in Dallas, Texas in March, 2013  at Guadalupe Cathedral.  This past summer the Salem Choirs were chosen for the Aegean Festival in Syros and Athens,  Greece and sang the Verdi Requiem, televised concerts of opera choruses and solo concerts.  
Dr. Sepulveda is married to Juan Sepúlveda and they have two sons, Dru and Brys.


2014 Guest Choir

The Palmetto Voices are made up of alumni of Dr. Sonja Sepúlveda from Salem College Choirs of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, Brewton-Parker College Concert Choir of Mount Vernon, Georgia, Western Kentucky University Women’s Choir of Bowling Green, Kentucky, Carolina Alive of the University of South Carolina in Columbia, South Carolina and graduates of Sumter High and the Sumter High Concert Choir.

Formed in 2006,  the choir strives to preserve the legacy of the Negro Spiritual and share the vision that this unique American choral art form is for everyone.  The choir performed at the South Carolina Music Educators Conference in 2009, combined with the Brewton-Parker Concert choir in the summer of 2010 to sing a solo concert at Carnegie Hall, sang a solo concert with composer Eric Whitacre in 2011, was the demonstration choir for Dr. Sepulveda’s presentation on the Spiritual at the Southern Division American Choral Directors Association conference in 2012. They were invited to sing at the American Music Festival in Colombia in 2012, and sang at the 2013 National ACDA in Dallas, Texas.  They will be a demonstration choir for Dr. Sepulveda’s presentation on the Spiritual for Alabama ACDA in July, 2014.