The 11th Annual Over the Mountain Festival will be held Sunday, February 10, 2019 at 4:00 p.m. at Riverchase United Methodist Church. For the 2018–19 season we welcome Dr. James Seay, Director of Music and Arts at First United Methodist Church in Montgomery as our guest clinician. He also serves as the Artistic Director/Conductor of the Montgomery Chorale, a community choir with over 110 singers on the roster. The répertoire for 2019 features Requiem for the Living by Dan Forrest, plus seven other outstanding pieces from a wide variety of exceptional composers. Please see the details below and plan on joining us for this free concert!
Dr. James Seay serves as the Director of Music and Arts at First United Methodist Church in Montgomery, AL where he leads a music program with twelve choirs and almost 300 participants. Dr. Seay is also the Artistic Director/Conductor of the Montgomery Chorale, a community choir with over 110 singers on the roster. The last couple of seasons have included such major choral works as the Mozart Requiem, Vaughan Williams Dona Nobis Pacem, and the Bernstein Chichester Psalms. In the fall of 2015, he launched a new auditioned ensemble, the Montgomery Chamber Chorale, which offers its own season of concerts specializing in chamber choral music. Before coming to Montgomery, Dr. Seay served as the Director of Music of FUMC Tuscaloosa for ten years where he led the Adult Choir in the 2010 Alabama ACDA Conference Concert. While in Tuscaloosa, Dr. Seay founded the professional chamber choral ensemble ETHOS which, in its first season, commissioned a piece, The Starry Night by Ola Gjeilo, and performed with the Tuscaloosa Symphony Orchestra.
Dr. Seay continues to serve as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator for choirs in college, high school, and church settings and has served as a Répertoire and Standards Chair for the Alabama Chapter of ACDA. Dr. Seay also remains active as a performer of both opera and concert répertoire as a young dramatic tenor, and has been praised for his work as a versatile singing actor. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Birmingham-Southern College, a Master of Music degree from the Peabody Conservatory of Johns-Hopkins University, and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Alabama.
Karen Payne Krekelberg is currently serving as the Associate Director of Music and Arts/Organist at Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church where she has been since 2011. Prior to this, she served as pianist/organist at Trussville First Methodist Church for 13 years, and other churches since the age of 16.
Karen earned a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Montevallo with an emphasis in piano pedagogy. While there, she studied piano with Robert Cowan and organ with Betty Louise Lumby. She has enjoyed teaching private piano as well as group classes to students of all ages over the years. Karen maintains a piano studio at the Conservatory of the Arts at Vestavia Hills United Methodist Church and serves as head of the piano faculty. A mother of two grown children, she can often be found accompanying for various music groups and theatre productions around Birmingham, including The Birmingham Girls Choir and the Birmingham Harmony Belles.
Interested in joining us for the 2018–19 season? Find out how and signup online by clicking here.