2015-2016 TCDA Board of Directors

March 2016                                    Choral Notes

Volume 18
Spring 2016

In This Issue...So Much Information!!                

  1. Convention Pre-registration & Hotel housing is open
  2. Finding Balance, by Connie Horton, VP MS/JH
  3. 2016 Membership renewal, click here to get started
  4. 2016 Elementary Honor Choir - audition deadline April 1
  5. 2016 Festival Chorus Information
  6. VOTE - 2016 Candidates for TCDA Board of Directors
  7. Nominate a great choral director for one of the TCDA prestigious awards!  Submit by April 15.  More info here
  8. SCHOLARSHIPS!  Apply by April 29
  9. Special Directors Chorus with Eric Whitacre
  10. In Memoriam

Convention Pre-registration and Hotel Housing is open!  Be sure to make your hotel reservations early to ensure you get what you need and want.  All the information you need will be on our website on the Convention page, http://www.tcda.net/convention.

Grand Hyatt is sold out!

Finding Balance by Connie Horton, VP MS/JH

When I was little, one of my favorite toys was my Weeble farmhouse.  You may remember their slogan, "Weebles Wobble, but they don't fall down".  The Weebles were wonderful little plastic people shaped like an egg.  I was amazed at their ability to stay upright regardless of what I did to them.  I could push it and it would pop back up.  I could drop it and it would wobble slightly, then stand right up.  I was fascinated by their ability to always come back to a place of balance. 

My time of playing with the Weebles people is long gone.  However, as I considered what words of wisdom to share with our membership, the Weebles people came to mind.  My first thought was, "REALLY?!"  Then I began to think about the Weebles, who rely on gravitational force to keep them grounded and balanced, and the topic became clear: Finding Balance

Part of having a successful teaching career is being able to find and maintain balance in one's life in and out of the classroom.  There will be times that we wobble, but if we have something or someone to hold on to, we will not fall.  We need anchors to help us stay grounded and balanced so that we can move forward.

In one's personal life, these anchors will hopefully love, support, encourage, and inspire.  They guide us by providing honest answers and they hold us accountable.  They also bring a great deal of joy and meaning to our lives.  My faith and my family are the anchors that keep me grounded and balanced on a personal level. 

Regardless of how long you have been teaching, having a mentor in your professional life is essential.  All teachers need someone who will give advice, offer suggestions, hold us accountable, and encourage and support us.  In my career, I have lost my foothold and began to fall many times.  My mentors were always there with advice and words of encouragement to help me find center, regain balance, and move forward.

I encourage you to identify your anchors.  Reflect on who or what empowers you, lifts you up, holds you accountable and pushes you forward.  Think about times you have been inspired to be a better you and therefore, a better teacher.  Utilize your mentors, spend time with them, and learn from them. 

We all wobble, but with the right anchors in our lives, we can regain balance.  I wish you the best.

Membership renewal for 2016 is underway. 

The TCDA membership year is Jan. 1 - Dec. 31.  Renew your membership now to ensure you don't miss a thing!  Click here to get started.

2016 TCDA Elementary Honor Choir

4th, 5th and 6th graders
$15 audition fee
Please visit our website for ALL the details, http://www.tcda.net/2016-elem-honor-choir

Important Dates:

  • April 1 - Audition deadline
  • April 26 - Notification of acceptance
  • May 15 - Registration fee due
  • Late May - Music packets sent
  • July 21 - Rehearsals in San Antonio begin
  • July 23 - Elementary Honor Choir Concert in San Antonio

2016 Festival Chorus

The Festival Chorus will be comprised of adult church choir singers from all around the state as well as outside of Texas. 
Registration opens on February 8; early bird registration is $35;  After May 1, registration is $45.  Complete information can be found here.

Candidates for the TCDA Board of Directors

The 2016 Board of Director positions to be voted on are: President Elect; Vice President, Church; Vice President, Elementary; and Vice President, College/Community.  Please introduce yourselt to the slate of candidates by visiting our website, Candidates.  Voting is online and open NOW!

2016 TCDA Awards

Among the distinctive and highly regarded awards bestowed upon deserving individuals each year, two categories of awards are from nominees submitted by the TCDA membership: Texas Choral Excellence Award and the TCDA Young Director of Distinction.  Please go here to read more about the description of these awards and past recipients and to NOMINATE that special director!  Please have nominations in by April 15.

2016 TCDA Scholarships

Every year, TCDA awards scholarships to Texas college or university undergraduates and scholarships for professional development to active choral directors.  The application process is online and quick and easy!  Applications must be in by April 29.  Go here for more information.

Special Directors Chorus

TCDA is organizing a very special Directors Chorus to sing at our 61st Convention this summer in San Antonio, July 21-23.  This chorus will be the experience of a lifetime, with conductor Eric Whitacre!  In collaboration with the Texas Bandmasters, this 200 person chorus will participate in a performance along with the U.S. Air Force Band of the West.

Spots are limited!!  This is a first come, first serve opportunity available to all current TCDA members for the low price of $20.  The registration form will open on Monday, April 4th at 10:00am and will close when the voice parts are full.  Please find additional information here on our website.

In Memoriam

Please help us ensure we are aware of any of our colleagues that may have passed since the 2015 Convention.  We've created a simple and quick way for you to let us know.  Please click here to be directed to our website.


Be sure to visit our Facebook Page

TCDA Board of Directors 2015 - 2016
President - Kari Gilbertson, Richardson ISD
Past President - Billy Talley, Amarillo ISD
Vice President, HS - Thomas Rinn, Colleyville ISD
Vice President, MS/JH - Connie Horton, Conroe ISD
Vice President, Elem - Michele Hobizal, Katy ISD
Vice President, College/Community - Lynne Gackle, Baylor Univ
Vice President, Church - Josh Taylor, First Presbyterian Dallas
Secretary/Treasurer - Leigh Ann McClure, Keller ISD

Executive Director - Sharon Lutz
Member Services Coordinator - Hallie Boone

Texas Choral Directors Association
7900 Centre Park Drive, Suite A
Austin, TX  78754