Hudson Community Choruses has appointed Mario Buchanan as director of its Children’s and Youth Choruses following the retirement of founding Director Eve Sliwinski.
Buchanan has also been named assistant music director for the choruses and will continue as accompanist.
Sliwinski began the Hudson Community Youth Chorus after returning to the area in 2014 following a period of living in London and listening to European youth choruses. A life-long educator, conductor and musician, she saw a need for additional choral training for area youth grades 6 through 12.
A year later, based on the success of the Youth Chorus, Sliwinski formed the Hudson Community Children’s Chorus. Both choruses became an integral part of the Hudson Community Chorus at their formation and have performed with the adult chorus as well as at the Akron Festival of Trees, Caroling on the Green, Christkindlmarkt and other events. Sliwinski will assist in the transition, and as a member of the adult chorus and has been named an Emeritus Director of the choruses.
"I’m grateful to the Hudson Community Chorus and their board for the opportunity to form the Children’s and Youth Choruses," Sliwinski said. "Many thanks to the youth of Hudson and surrounding areas for their dedication to our ‘lifetime of singing’ mission, with special appreciation to their parents for their support. I’m truly excited to have someone of Mario’s caliber and high standards to take over and continue to grow our youth choruses program."
Buchanan joined the Hudson Community Choruses this season as accompanist for all three groups. A Magna Cum Laude graduate of the University of Akron in organ performance, he studied organ with Valerie Thorson and Nicole Keller and choral conducting with Dr. Samuel Gordon and Dr. Marie Bucoy-Calavan. He currently serves as the Director of Music/Organist for Christ Church Episcopal, Hudson.
In addition to preparing weekly services, he directs the church’s adult choir, revived the church’s Young Choristers and oversees its Choral Scholar program. Prior to coming to Hudson, Buchanan served churches in Canton, Copley, Cuyahoga Falls and Wadsworth. He is a prolific performer and sought after accompanist and has been featured at venues across the area. A life-long singer, he continues both his voice and conducting studies and has a variety of experience in working with school-aged students.
With training in music library science, Buchanan also brings an understanding of a wide-range of musical literature from classic to contemporary.
In his role with HCC, in addition to accompanying, he will work with HCC Artistic Director Nathaniel Duvuvuei in planning programs, preparing the choruses, conducting and promoting chorus activities.
The 2020-21 season will be Duvuvuei’s ninth season as artistic director and HCC’s 33rd year of choral performances.
"I am beyond excited and humbled to be with the HCC in this position," Buchanan said. "I am grateful to the Board of HCC and Nathaniel for their support in my appointment. I would be remiss if I did not thank Eve Sliwinski who has been become a mentor, friend, and colleague during my time in Hudson. I feel honored to be continuing the great work she has done for the HCC."
"We are delighted that Mario has agreed to expand his role with choruses." HCC Chorus Board President Kathy Sluzewski said. "He brings a wealth of musical experience and enthusiasm to our choruses and we look forward to working with him for many seasons to come. Although our 2019-20 season was cut short, Mario did extraordinary work to prepare and accompany the choruses for our December Jubilate Deo concert. We are so grateful to Eve Sliwinski for her devotion to our Youth and Children’s choruses and are confident they will continue to grow musically in the years ahead under Mario’s direction."
Although all choruses cancelled Spring rehearsals and its May 3 concert, the group has continued to meet via Zoom and plans are well underway to resume rehearsals, in an environment safe for chorus members and audiences, for its Holiday season in late August. More information is available at hudsonsings.org.
HCC are a 501c (3) non-profit that relies on support from members, our concert audiences, the area community, our rehearsal and performance venue partners, First Congregational Church Hudson and Christ Church Episcopal, Hudson, grants from the Hudson Community Foundation and a sustaining grant from Peg’s Fund.