Townsend School of Music offers three performing collegiate choirs and one community children's choir. Mercer's choirs are recognized for their excellence. In addition to excellent undergraduate preparation in music performance and education, the choral area offers a master's degree in choral conducting and a masters degree in church music with an emphasis in choral conducting.
The Mercer Singers, an auditioned ensemble of 45 voices, is the primary touring choral ensemble of Mercer University. The choir includes undergraduate & graduate students and performs a wide range of choral music spanning from the Renaissance to works written by composers of our time. The Mercer Singers have sung on programs for the Georgia Music Educators Association, the Southern Division of MENC, and the Southern Division of American Choral Directors Association. They are featured often with the Macon Symphony Orchestra with recent performances of Requiem (Duruflé), Chichester Psalms (Bernstein), Messiah (Handel), Lord Nelson Mass (Haydn), Requiem (Mozart), Daphnis & Chloe (Ravel), Choral Fantasy and Symphony No. 9 (Beethoven). The choir and their director tour extensively and have performed throughout the United States and Europe. Since 2000, the Mercer Singers have experienced six highly successful international tours of England and Wales (May 2000), Italy (2002), Austria & Czech Republic (2004), Germany, Poland, Slovakia, & Hungary (2006), Japan (2007), and Russia (2011), with performances in many of the world’s grand concert halls and cathedrals including: Notre Dame (Paris), St. Paul’s (London), Ely Cathedral (Ely), St. Vitus (Prague), St. Peters (Vatican), Matthias Church (Budapest), Hibiki Hall (Kitakyushu), and Cappella Hall (St. Petersburg). The choir has also collaborated with several international choirs including the Warwick University Chamber Choir (England), St. Petersburg University Chamber Choir (Russia), the Gnessins Chamber Choir (State Music College, Moscow), and Claudio Monteverdi Choir (Castelfiorentino, Italy). Next spring they will return to England to perform a series of concerts with the University of Chichester Choir and Chamber Orchestra. In 2012, they collaborated with the McDuffie Center for Strings to film A Grand Mercer Christmas that will be distributed nationally to Public Broadcast Stations throughout America for airing in December 2013. Additionally, the ensemble has gained a regional following with its annual performances of A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols which is held on the campus of Mercer University each December. The choir is widely acclaimed for its spirited performances, breadth of repertoire, and dedication to singing repertoire of the a cappella idiom.
Mercer University Women's Choir
The Mercer Women's Chamber Choir is a 45-voice ensemble that includes undergraduate students from all disciplines of Mercer University.The choir performs a wide range of choral music spanning from madrigals and motets of the Renaissance period to works by contemporary composers, and music theater selections.Founded in 2002, this auditioned ensemble rehearses twice each week and performs off-campus in addition to giving several performances through the Townsend School of Music concert series.In addition, they have combined with other ensembles to perform with the Macon Symphony Orchestra and performed works that included Symphony No. 9 (Beethoven), Symphony No. 3 (Mahler), Daphnis & Chloe (Ravel), and The Planets (Holst).In January 2010, they were invited to sing for the Georgia Music Educators Conference in Savannah.
Mercer University Children's Choir
Founded in September 2005, the Mercer University Children's Choir is a community arts initiative of Mercer University's Townsend School of Music. The Mercer University Children's Choirs involves 65 singers in four auditioned choirs. The Preparatory Choir (ages 8 - 10) is a training choir that performs a limited number of concerts in Middle Georgia. The aim of the Preparatory Choir is to help young singers develop healthy singing and performance skills in an enjoyable, yet structured environment. The Touring Choir (ages 10 - 18) is a performance choir that sings throughout Georgia and conducts an annual out-of-state concert tour. The singers learn to read music, to use proper vocal technique, to develop creativity, to form healthy relationships, and to share their artistic gifts with the community. The Concert Choir, a treble choir of older singers selected from the Touring Choir, will perform choral music specifically suited to the singers' musical abilities. Membership in the Exultemus and Cantiamo Choirs is determined by seniority and musical ability.