Founder and First Artistic Director
Julia White is the founder and first artistic director of the acclaimed Shenandoah Valley Children’s Choir (SVCC) at Eastern Mennonite University (EMU) in Harrisonburg, Virginia. EMU leadership thanks Ms. White for the vision, dedication, leadership and excellence she brought to the SVCC for over two decades. Julia stepped down in August 2012.
Julia oversaw the program of over 200 students in three classes and three choirs and taught courses on the child voice. She holds a Bachelor of Music degree from DePauw University and a Master of Music degree from Westminster Choir College, Princeton, where she studied choral conducting, organ performance and children’s choirs. Ms. White has done post-graduate specialization in children’s choirs at Westminster Choir College, the American Boychoir School, Royal School of Church Music, and Choral Music Experience Institute at Northern Illinois University, where she received Levels I- III certification and Artist Teacher Diploma. She has studied long term in Vienna, Austria, and England and holds the Level I Kodaly training.
Ms. White served two terms as the ACDA Children’s Choir Chair for Virginia and created the ACDA Virginia/Maryland Honors Choir in 1998 & 1999. She has been a frequent guest director and lecturer at festivals and universities in Virginia, Connecticut, Washington, DC, Oklahoma, Alabama, Mississippi, and Texas and has directed All-State Choirs in West Virginia (‘02), Mississippi (‘03), Florida (‘04) and Wisconsin (’06).
In 2008 she directed the Children’s Honor Choir for the American Choral Directors Association Western Division in Anaheim, CA, and the National Children’s Choir for the Organization of American Kodaly Educators in Denver, Colorado. She received Governor’s School awards in Richmond in 1998 and 2000, and received the Distinguished Artist-in-Residence title at Eastern Mennonite University in 2003.
Under Ms. White’s direction the SVCC performed at the American Choral Directors Association Southern Division Conference (’00, ’02, ‘06), the Virginia Music Educators Conferences (‘96, ‘98,’04, ‘08) and as headline choir at the American Kodaly Educators National Conference (’01, ‘09) and the Children In Harmony Festival (’04). Collaborations include five performances with the American Boychoir, with The Washington Symphonic Brass, and with Placido Domingo. The SVCC has sung with the Carnegie Hall Children’s Choir Festival (’98, ‘07), the Tuscany International Children’s Choir Festival (‘01) in Italy and the Pacific Rim Children’s Chorus Festival (’05, ’09) ) in Hawaii.