The Northwest University Music Department offers several ensembles open to all students by audition.

Concert Choir – directed by Bill Owen (bill.owen@northwestu.edu)

  • Concert Choir consists of 40-50 voices, and is available to all students by audition only.
  • The repertoire focuses on collegiate choral pieces, including major works.
  • Members are expected to enroll for the entire year.
This choir performs at a yearly Christmas concert at Benaroya Hall, a Spring Concert, at NU Commencement and may sing at local churches during the Spring Semester.  The Concert choir travels on an optional major singing tour in Europe every few years after Commencement in mid-May.  The Choir has sung in some of the most famous cathedrals in Great Britain and Italy, including St. Paul’s, Yorkminister, and St. Mark’s.

Choralons – directed by Brenda Rasmussen (brenda.rasmussen@northwestu.edu)

  • Choralons is a large choir available to all students by audition only.
  • The repertoire is contemporary Christian music accompanied by a 7-piece rhythm section.
  • Choralons tour and record a CD during Spring Semester only. In Spring semester, the choir travels to places such as Arizona and California during part of NU’s Spring Break.

NU Jazz Band – directed by Ron Cole (ron.cole@northwestu.edu)

  • The NU Jazz Band is a traditional “Big Band.”
  • Students who play saxophone, trombone, trumpet, piano, bass, rhythm guitar or drum set are encouraged to audition.
  • This ensemble plays charts from the gold age of Count Basie, Benny Goodman, and Duke Ellington as well as contemporary jazz band composers.

Vocal Jazz – directed by Nancy Erickson (nancy.erickson13@northwestu.edu)

  • Vocal Jazz is available to all students by audition only.
  • Groups consist of “Synergy” Vocal Jazz and the Jazz Rhythm Combo.

The Ensembles perform three concerts each semester and compete at the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival in the Spring Semester.  The repertoire includes swing tunes, rhythm and blues, Latin rhythms and ballads.

Wind Ensemble – directed by Ron Cole (ron.cole@northwestu.edu)

  • An ensemble open for audition by all students playing a wind or percussion instrument.
  • The symphonic band is comprised of woodwinds, brass and percussion.

This ensemble plays pieces from the historical periods, contemporary composers and arrangers, as well as movie scores.

String Ensemble – directed by Jim Jansen (jim.jansen@northwestu.edu)

An ensemble open by audition for all students playing violin, viola, cello and double bass.

Repertoire will feature lively pieces by J.S. Bach, Handel, Mozart, plus custom hymn arrangements. Student arrangements are encouraged!  Repertoire will be tailored to match player abilities.   

Chamber Choir – directed by Bill Owen (bill.owen@northwestu.edu)

  • Chamber Choir is an ensemble comprised of about 20 voices and is available to students by audition.

For more information on any ensemble, email either the director or music@northwestu.edu.