Pope John Paul II Chamber and Women's Choir

Pope John Paul II Chamber and Women's Choir



Pope John Paul II High School with a student enrollment of 630 in Hendersonville, Tennessee, has had a choral program of consistent excellence. There are 5 choirs at JPII, 3 of which are Advanced Choirs: Chamber Choir, Advanced Women, and Advanced Men. All 3 of these choirs have received the highest ratings at both District and State Choral Festivals since the school’s inception in 2002. In 2005, Advanced Women and Chamber Choir sang at the Basilica in St. Louis, Missouri. In 2006, the Advanced Women’s Choir joined 85 other women at Carnegie Hall in New York to perform two major choral works, Missa Pro Defunctis by Francesco Brusa and The Rose of Avontown, by Amy Beach. These works, with chorus, professional orchestra and soloists, were conducted by Jeannette Ebelhar, Pope John Paul II Choral Director.

These choirs are invited to sing at Masses, weddings, clubs and organizations. In August of 2007 they were the music presiders for the Mass of the 125th Supreme Convention of the Knights of Columbus held at the Opryland Hotel in Nashville. Most recently they are one of 13 local choirs to perform in a PBS Special called CELEBRATE AMERICA in October of 2009.
The mission of the choral program at Pope John Paul II High School is to provide a comprehensive music education for its young choral students focusing on an understanding of the basic elements of music, developing independent singers/musicians, consistently working to possess an above average sight reading ability and increasing the student’s aural skills and vocal technique. Most importantly, in all our musical endeavors, we will seek to glorify God through the gifts of musical talent which He has given us.

Jeannette (Jj) Ebelhar, director
Jeannette (Jj) Ebelhar is the choral instructor and Fine Arts Chair at Pope John Paul II High School in Hendersonville, Tennessee. Since the school’s inception in 2002, the Advanced Women’s Choir and Chamber Choir have received Superior Ratings in performance and sight reading at both the District and State Choral Festivals. Ebelhar is also the private voice and piano instructor at Pope John Paul II High School. Before JPII opened, Mrs. Ebelhar composed its Alma Mater and JPII Fight Song.

In April of 2007, at the Tennessee State Music Conference in Nashville, Ebelhar was awarded an Outstanding Service Award. The service awards are predicated on years of service; however, Tennessee Music Educators Association members who are in good standing nominate these candidates, and the leaders of the state music association review the nomination before making the final decisions.

In June 26, 2006, Ebelhar conducted a 150-voice national women’s honor choir with professional orchestra and soloists at Carnegie Hall, where they received a standing ovation from an audience of 2000. The group performed Francesco Brusa’s Missa Pro Defunctis and Amy Beach’s The Rose of Avontown. Ebelhar took 65 girls from Pope John Paul II High School Advanced Women’s Choir and past students from St. Cecilia Academy and Pope John Paul II High School. The Foothills Women’s Chorus, a semi-professional choir from Tucson, Arizona, also performed in this choir.

At the invitation of Bishop David Choby of Nashville, Pope John Paul II High School Chamber Choir and Advanced Women’s Choirs were selected to be the music presiders for the Mass of the 125th Supreme Convention of the Knights of Columbus on August 8th, 2007. Nearly 100 bishops and cardinals from all over the world attended this convention.

Ebelhar presented an interest session with her JPII Advanced Women’s Chorus entitled “Developing Singers’ Musical Minds, Ears, and Voices,” for the 2005 Fall Tennessee American Choral Directors’ Association Conference in Knoxville, Tennessee, in October.

Prior to coming to JPII, Ebelhar was the choral director at St. Cecilia Academy in Nashville for 9 years. During these 9 years, her Advanced Women’s Choirs earned superior ratings in both performance and sight reading. St. Cecilia Advanced Women’s Choir performed at the National Music Educator’s National Conference in April of 2002 in Nashville. Ebelhar’s women’s choirs have also sung for Masses at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church and St. Jean Baptiste Catholic Church in New York City.

Ebelhar was recognized as an “Outstanding Teacher for Tennessee Governor’s School for the Arts” in 2000. She has also been guest clinician/conductor and accompanist for several Mid-State Honors Choirs sponsored by the Middle Tennessee Vocal Organization. Since 2004, Ebelhar has served as Chairperson for the Tennessee All-State SATB Chair and in 2006, the All-State Women’s Chorus. For 2 years, Ebelhar also directed the Nashville Music Teacher’s Association “Pianorama,” a concert featuring multiple piano ensembles of young pianists.

Ebelhar served as director of the Hendersonville Community Singers for eleven years. She served on the Executive Board of Middle Tennessee Vocal Asso

Set List

*= music to be sung during the Vatican Mass
1. Sing a New Song by Shirley W. McRae (Psalm 98)
2. Prayer of the Children Words and music by Kurt Bestor, arr. by Andrea S. Klouse
3. Jesus Christ the Apple Tree by Elizabeth Poston
4. *O Taste and See by Anthony Doherty
5. *My Song in the Night, Southern Folk Hymn, arranged by Paul Christiansen
6. Speak to One Another of Psalms (sung in German or English) by Jean Berger
7. Wondrous Love, Traditional Hymn arranged by Alice Parker and Robert Shaw
8. Sing Me to Heaven by Daniel E. Gawthrop
9. *I See His Blood upon the Rose by Michael Bedford
10. *Esto Les Digo by Kinley Lange
11. The Eyes of All Wait Upon Thee by Berger
12. *The Word Was God John 1:1-3 by Rosephanye Powell (#10-#15 are all Spirituals)
13. I’m Gonna Sing ‘Til the Spirit Moves in my Heart by Moses Hogan
14. Give Me Jesus arranged by L. L. Fleming
15. Elijah Rock arranged by Jester Hairston
16. My Soul’s Been Anchored in the Lord by Moses Hogan
17. *He