Since their first concert in 1970, The Towne Singers have been providing quality musical programs in south-central Pennsylvania. Founded by Jane and Chuck Butler, the group began as an ensemble of eight singers. Over the last five decades the group has grown to the current ensemble of thirty members. The singers are a diverse group of individuals representing a variety of ages and professions who share a common bond: The love of music. The training and experience is strongly reflected in the wide variety of musical styles presented in performance. The desire for professional growth, fellowship, community service and the joy of making good music define the spirit of The Towne Singers.
The singers are directed by Dr. Blaine Shover. A Professor of Music at Shippensburg University, he served as the conductor of the Concert Choir and Madrigal Singers for the past 43 years. In addition to his classroom duties, he is also the Artistic Director of the summer music Festival and the founder and director of the Festival Chorus, a professional choir of 26 vocalists. He received the Master of Music Degree from Temple University and the Doctor of Musical Arts Degree from the University of Illinois. Valerie Merriman is the accompanist for The Towne Singers. She has been a piano teacher and performer at Cumberland Valley School of Music since 1992 and has performed at Totem Pole Playhouse and various community theater productions. She received her bachelor’s degree from Wellesley College.
Our community was well represented on good will tours of Europe in 1990, 1994, 1998 and 2004 and in 2014 on a tour of Eastern Canada. In addition to their annual Christmas and Spring concerts, in July of 2017, they joined with the Festival Orchestra and Chorus in a performance of Brahms “German Requiem” in the Luhrs Performing Arts Center. In March of this year, they were the opening act for Jay Leno and in June they will begin a 12-day tour concertizing in Italy, Slovenia, and Austria. The Towne Singers have sung in small community buildings and in large convention centers, in tiny country churches and in a large basilica in Paris, France. The desire for professional growth, fellowship, community service and the joy of making good music define the spirit of The Towne Singers. Music, the international language, is the reward.
Dr. Blaine Shover