About our Director
Marion van der Loo’s work as a choral/orchestral conductor is well known in the Midwest. Her facility for the voice and for language has developed her reputation for bringing out the nuance of both the music and the text. Ms. van der Loo earned the B. Mus degree in Opera Performance, magna cum laude, and the M. Mus. degree in conducting from Temple University’s Esther Boyer Conservatory of Music. She completed her doctoral residency in conducting at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. After more than 20 years as a professional soloist and choral musician on the east coast and in Europe, she began her full-time conducting career. She served as conductor for several choruses and churches on the east coast before becoming Director of Music at First Presbyterian Church for 10 years and Director of the Illinois Symphony Chorus for 12 years, during which time she frequently conducted the Symphony Chorus and Orchestra.
Ms. van der Loo is now in her 11th Season as Music Director and Conductor of The Springfield Choral Society, with which she has performed works from nearly every musical period to ever-increasing and appreciative audiences. Over the past 6 years, she has conducted the Choral Society in 7 performances of Handel’s Messiah for a total of more than 3,600 people. in France Ms. van der Loo conducted her fifth European concert tour, accepting, among others, an invitation to conduct the chorus in the full Sunday morning Mass at Notre Dame.
As the Choral Society has grown to its present 70 members, expanding its repertoire and its influence, Ms. van der Loo plans to continue its reputation for excellence by preparing beautiful and creative concerts for this season.
Celebrating 46 years as part of the Springfield arts mosaic, the Springfield Choral Society offers an eclectic repertoire of secular and sacred music from the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical and Contemporary periods.
The Choral Society is known for high-quality performances presented in historically correct text settings and musical styles. Its body of work includes masses and motets by the great masters, carols and celebratory pieces and a range of outstanding contemporary choral selections. In addition, over the past several years it has commissioned for new compositions, premiered by the Choral Society.
The Springfield Choral Society contains an exciting mix of amateur, professional and semi-professional singers, some of whom have taught music at elementary, secondary and college levels. Others, while engaging in various professions, enjoy performing choral music as their avocation. Many singers have been members of other choral groups from around the country prior to settling in the Springfield Area. With its growth over these past years and its vision for the future, the Springfield Choral Society expects to continue its long tradition for many years to come.