Choral music thrives at Radford University, with three ensembles performing a wide variety of music throughout the year in the beautiful acoustics of the Covington Center for the Visual and Performing Arts Performance. Additionally, there is an annual Christmas performance at the historic architectural and acoustical splendor of St. Andrew's Roman Catholic Church in Roanoke. Each December also brings the Madrigal Dinner, a feast, a concert and a fanciful play all rolled into one.

Choirs from the university tour regularly including residencies performing with major orchestras in New Orleans and Roanoke. Director of Choral Activities, David Otis Castonguay has cultivated a special relationship with Russia which has resulted in regular performing tours of Moscow and Yekaterinburg. Each spring the university choirs combine to form the Radford University Choral Union and present concerts of major works with orchestra. Recent performances have included: Bach cantatas, Haydn's Creation, Mozart's Coronation Mass and Missa solemnis K. 337, as well as Orff's Carmina Burana.


Audition Information

Auditions are open to all students. Admission to each of the three choirs at Radford University is open to all students through competitive auditions which are held during the first week of each semester.

The choral audition consists of:

• vocalization to determine range
• an ear training test of pitch memory
• brief sight reading test
• no prepared piece is required

Returning students in Radford Singers and Madrigal Singers must re-audition each fall. In this way, first-year and transfer students have an equal opportunity to participate in these groups.

Madrigal Singers

MUSC 454 rehearses Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 1 p.m.

Conductor:  Dr. Meredith Bowen
Director of Choral Activities

While concentrating on vocal chamber music of the Renaissance and Baroque periods, the Madrigal Singers also perform music for chamber choir from the Romantic period through the most contemporary compositions of today. They are the featured performers at the annual Madrigal Dinners. Opportunities for small ensemble singing of music with one person on a part are an integral component of this choir.

Advanced levels of vocal technique and sight-reading ability are required. Strong musical skills and the highest level of personal commitment are necessary for admission. Experience in singing foreign languages is a significant advantage for admission. Working on music outside of class and memorization is required.

Returning members must re-audition for each year's membership.


MUSC 147 rehearses Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 2 p.m.

Conductor: Dr. Meredith Y. Bowen
Director of Choral Activities

University Chorale is a select chorus made up of treble voices and focuses on the beautiful and challenging literature for treble choir from the past five centuries. The members of this choir are a dedicated and spirited group of students including music majors as well as talented singers from every other academic discipline on campus. Their repertoire includes some of the most challenging music being written today.

A high degree of dedication and a strong work ethic are required for this ensemble. An excellent ear is required and sight reading skills are a plus, although students with modest sight reading skills will find that participation in this choir will enhance their skill level.

This choir is the oldest ensemble on campus and has existed in some form since the founding days of the Radford College for Women. One of the founders was Florence Baird, who also composed the Radford University "Alma Mater."

Membership is open to all university students through auditions held at the beginning of each semester.


MUSC 145 rehearses Tuesday & Thursday at 2 p.m.

Conductor: Dr. Meredith Y. Bowen
Director of Choral Activities

This choir embraces the traditional role of men's singing groups with performances of music ranging from Barbershop and Doo-wop to spirituals, Schubert and Poulenc. UM draws students from all walks of campus life. The blend of music majors and singers from other majors creates an exciting, convivial social structure that makes the University Men unique.

Membership is open to all university students through auditions held at the beginning of each semester.


Members of Chorale and University Men may audition to perform contemporary a cappella music in a small ensemble setting.