Artistic Team

Gretchen Kuhrmann, Artistic Director

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Artist Director Gretchen Kuhrmann is the founder and visionary of Choralis. A true advocate for choral music in all schools and communities, she has spent her career honing choral ensembles into musically sensitive performers and encouraging young singers to develop their skills.

The daughter of a diplomat, Ms. Kuhrmann has traveled and lived around the world, including an extended stay in Hamburg, Germany, where she spent her formative years. Before leaving Europe, she toured and performed with her own ensemble throughout Western Europe. In addition to being a sought-after conducting and choral clinician, Kuhrmann has shown great success with building choral organizations and is in demand as a speaker and consultant on the topic at choral conventions and workshops around the world.

Audiences and critics alike have recognized Choralis for its musical excellence. Ms. Kuhrmann’s detailed preparation and skillful conducting have earned Choralis ensembles acclaim throughout the United States and Europe. Critics observed “…Kuhrmann has trained this big group to sing with the delicacy and transparency of a chamber chorus, and it does this very well” and “…Conductor Gretchen Kuhrmann drew a clear and beautifully blended sound from the group, which was maintained when the music pulled down to only a handful of voices.” (The Washington Post)

In 2014, Choralis and Cantus Primo were selected to be featured performing ensembles for the Chorus America national conference held in Washington, DC in June. Ensembles under Ms. Kuhrmann’s direction have also been selected to perform for both ACDA (American Choral Directors Association) and VMEA (Virginia Music Educators Association) conventions.

Ms. Kuhrmann has prepared choruses for many notable U.S. and international conductors as well as numerous area diplomatic and political events. She is the Director of Music for Fairfax Presbyterian Church and holds performance degrees in conducting from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and George Mason University.

Todd Fickley, Associate Director and Keyboard Artist

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Todd Fickley is the Associate Director and Keyboard Artist for Choralis. He is also the Acting Director of the Washington Bach Consort, after having performed with them for over 15 years, and Associate Music Director and Chorus Master of the Cathedral Choral Society.  He also is the Organist of The Falls Church Anglican in Falls Church, Virginia.

A native Washingtonian, Mr. Fickley began his organ studies at the Washington National Cathedral under Bruce Neswick. At the age of 23, Mr. Fickley was made a Fellow of the American Guild of Organists (AGO). He also holds the AGO Choirmaster Diploma as well as the M.A. in Organ Performance with High Distinction from the University of Wales.

A prize-winning organist, Mr. Fickley has been featured numerous times on NPR and PRI, and has performed and conducted across the United States, Israel, and Europe. In 2014, he launched “The Bach Project,” a cycle of concerts performing and recording all of Bach’s organ works — the first time in almost a quarter of a century that such a project has been undertaken in the DC area. The first volume of this cycle was recently released on the MSR Classics label and was praised in Fanfare Magazine as “some of the most enthralling Bach organ playing you are likely to hear anywhere by anyone.”

Mr. Fickley also has extensive experience teaching and preparing choirs of all ages using the Royal School of Church Music system for performances of repertoire such as Bach’s Passions and Cantatas, Handel’s Messiah, and annual Nine Lessons and Carols Programs. He is frequently seen as conductor, soloist, accompanist, and speaker in the area.

Margaret Woods, Director, Cantus Choral Scholars Program

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Margaret (Margie) Woods recently joined the Choralis Artistic Team as Director of the Cantus Choral Scholars Program. Margie brings with her exceptional knowledge, skills, and experience in developing young choral musicians, including advanced degrees in music education and 16 years of experience as a choral music educator.

Margie is currently teaching at Washington Irving Middle School in Springfield, VA. Prior to this position, she taught at Rachel Carson Middle School, J.E.B. Stuart High School, and Hayfield Secondary School, and also completed six years as Choral Music Resource Teacher for Fairfax County Public Schools. Her choirs consistently receive superior and excellent performance ratings in festivals and competitions, and received two invitations to perform at the Virginia Music Educators Association In-Service Conference. She currently serves as treasurer for the Virginia Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA), and previously served as VA-ACDA’s R&S chair for Ethnic/Multicultural Music (2006-2012).

Ms. Woods also is a Presidential Scholar at George Mason University, completing a PhD in music education (ABD). Her research interests center around multicultural choral music as well as the health and well-being of music teachers. Her dissertation topic is on alleviating difficulties in teaching multicultural choral music. She received a bachelors degree in Music and Psychology from the College of William & Mary and her masters degree from the University of Colorado-Boulder.

Our Singers

Choralis at Epiphany Chorus America

Our singers come from across the Metro DC area and from all walks of life. Many of our singers are professional musicians and music educators, while others have developed their choral music performance abilities as dedicated amateurs. Singers are admitted to our ensembles only after passing an audition, and re-auditions are required to return for a subsequent season. This ensures that the high quality of Choralis performances is maintained.

    Contact us:

  1. The Choralis Foundation
    PO Box 6012
    Falls Church, VA  22040
    (703) 237-2499 (t)
    Email: info@choralis.org