Theme: Give Thanks: A Grateful Heart

Verse: Colossians 3:15-16 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.
Verse: Psalm 95: 1 - 2 Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song



Bonclarken Choir Clinicians

Eric Nelson, Adult Choir Clinician, is Professor of Music and Director of Choral Studies at Emory University. He is also the conductor and Artistic Director of Atlanta Master Chorale. For most of his career, he has also served as a church minister of music, most recently as the interim choral director at Glenn Memorial United Methodist Church. Dr. Nelson’s choirs have performed throughout the world, including London, Rome, Krakow, Berlin, Leipzig, Prague, Moscow, Seoul, Carnegie Hall, Lincoln Center, and the Sydney Opera House. He has conducted choirs at eight American Choral Directors Association conventions, including Atlanta Master Chorale’s performance at Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis for the National Convention in 2017, and the Emory Concert Choir’s performance at Chicago’s Orchestra Hall for the National Convention in 2011. In May of 2017, he embarked with the Emory Concert Choir on a performance tour to Spain and Portugal where they sang in Granada, Seville, Lisbon and at the Alhambra. Dr. Nelson is no stranger to the Bonclarken Music Conference. Dr. Nelson’s ensembles are characterized by the performance of repertoire in a wide variety of styles and for their ability to fuse technical precision with warmth of musical expression. He appears regularly as clinician, lecturer, and guest conductor for honor choirs, conventions, symposiums, workshops, and all-state choral festivals. Nelson is also past president of the GA ACDA. Dr. Nelson’s choral compositions and arrangements are sung regularly by ensembles throughout the United States. He is the editor of the “Atlanta Master Chorale Choral Series,” a division of Morningstar Music Publishers and EC Schirmer. His compositions are also published by Colla Voce and Augsburg Fortress. He holds degrees in voice and conducting from Houghton College, Westminster Choir College, and Indiana University.

Adult Choir Accompanist - David Coleman

Dr. Troy D. Robertson is the Director of Choirs at Tarleton State University in Stephenville, Texas. Tarleton choirs are renowned for excellence under his direction. Tarleton’s Chamber Choir has performed in the Xi’an China International Choral Festival, New York’s Carnegie Hall, and toured Japan. Robertson is also the conductor of the Cross Timbers Civic Chorale, a community ensemble. Dr. Robertson is an avid composer. The Florida State University Singers premiered "This Mystery," under the direction of Dr. Kevin Fenton, at the national convention of the ACDA. Dr. Robertson’s works are published with Music Spoke, Santa Barbara Music, Hinshaw Music, and Colla Voce Music. An active clinician and adjudicator, Dr. Robertson has served in festivals across the United States. Earlier Dr. Robertson was Assistant Professor of Music Education at Ithaca College in Ithaca, NY. and served as choral director at East Gaston High School in Mount Holly, NC. The chorus performed in Florida, Virginia, and Carnegie Hall. He taught alongside Trip McGill as co-conductor of the Gaston County Choral Ensemble. He also served as associate conductor of the Charlotte Oratorio Singers and Charlotte Chamber Singers. He served as Director of Music for First Presbyterian Church of Thomasville, Georgia, and Director of Music for First Baptist Church of Gastonia, NC. Dr. Robertson holds degrees from Florida State University (Ph.D.), the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (M.M.), and Furman University (B.M.Ed.). He is a lifetime member of ACDA and an active member of NCCO, TMEA, and TCDA. He is married to Dr. Stephanie Robertson, a psychologist, and they make their home in Stephenville, Texas, with their son, Winton.

Youth Choir Accompanist - Ginger Statom

David Mandt, Middle School Choir Clinician, is currently the Director of Choirs at Chelsea Middle School, where he teaches nearly 200 students. He attended and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Florida State University, where he had the privilege to work under the tutelage of Dr. Kevin Fenton, Dr. Judy Bowers, and Dr. Andre Thomas. In addition to his work at Chelsea Middle School, he is also a Senior Music Assistant for the Birmingham Boys Choir. He has worked for three years under Ken Berg, and together they teach 160 boys aging from 8-18. He has traveled the world as a chorister and in professional choirs to Japan, the UK, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, and all over the United States. He most recently returned from Xi'an, China, where he sang with the Festival Singers of Florida and participated in the Xi'an International Choral Festival as a soloist and chorister. David is currently an actively sought-after clinician and judge. He and his wife Aria currently live and work in Birmingham, AL, where he continues to teach and sing in any capacity that he can.

Middle School Accompanist - Richard Scott

Amy Joye, Junior Choir Clinician, was originally from Woodruff, SC. Amy grew up as a member of Woodruff First Baptist Church, where her mother was Minister of Music and her father was Choir Director. She graduated from Furman University with the Bachelor of Music degree in Church Music. She also attended Converse College and the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky, studying vocal performance and music education. Amy has taught preschool and elementary music in Kentucky and North Carolina and has led workshops for children’s choir directors in Kentucky, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Missouri. Amy has served as the Children’s Choir Director at Highland Baptist Church in Louisville, Kentucky, as the Music Associate for Children at Myers Park Baptist Church in Charlotte, NC, and as the Children’s Choir Coordinator at Westminster Presbyterian Church in Greenville, SC. Upon moving back to Greenville in 2008, Amy joined First Baptist Greenville and became an active volunteer in the Music Ministry there, serving as Junior Choir Director and singing in the Sanctuary Choir. In 2017, she joined the staff of First Baptist Greenville as director of youth music and conducts choirs for children in grades 3-12. Amy is a children’s choir curriculum author and has had music and materials published by Lifeway and Growing in Grace. She also created her own preschool church choir curriculum: Sing, Play, Rejoice in God! Amy is also an accomplished singer and currently performs with the Greenville Chorale, the Herring Chamber Ensemble and the South Carolina Bach Choir.

Junior Choir Accompanist - Felicia Dykes

Cheri Owensby, Clinician for the Primary/Cherub Choirs, earned a Bachelor of Music degree in Voice Performance from Shenandoah Conservatory of Music in Winchester, Virginia, and a master’s degree in Elementary Education from Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Mrs. Owensby has taught in the Greenville County Schools in Greenville, South Carolina, for 26 years and was awarded the Teacher of the Year for Simpsonville Elementary School in 2004. It was there that she leads a 70-voice chorus of fourth and fifth graders who perform regularly for the school and the community. Her students are also accomplished musicians, playing the Appalachian dulcimer, recorder, handbells, and harmonica. Mrs. Owensby directs the children’s choirs at the Greenville ARP Church and is in her twenty-second year as the director of the Bonclarken Music/Drama Camp. Cheri is married to Mike, and they have two sons. They reside in Simpsonville, SC.

Primary/Cherub Accompanist - Sabrina Ferguson