Our History The Northborough Area Community Chorus was formed in the spring of 1972 and has grown from a few hearty people of Adult Education Classes at Algonquin Regional High School, who enjoyed singing, to a spirited blend of 60 SATB voices. Its concert debut in the spring of 1972 gained an enthusiastic response and was the beginning of a new page in the cultural history of Northborough and Worcester County. The chorus is a non-profit organization that awards annual scholarships to the children of chorus members who choose to continue their education. Memorial scholarships are also awarded in the memory of deceased chorus members. The chorus has traveled to London and regularly attends Broadway shows in New York and Boston. They have performed benefit concerts for the Northborough Historical Society, the Northborough Lions Club, the American Cancer Society, the March of Dimes, and the Marlborough Historical Society, as well as various local civic groups.
Our Members The majority of our chorus members come from Shrewsbury, Northborough, Westborough, Southborough, and Worcester, Massachusetts. We adults of all ages and abilities, coming together for the joy of blending our voices in song.
Welcoming a New Director and Accompanist This fall, NACC welcomes its first new director, Ellie Armsby. Ellie has been active as a choral conductor and clinician in the Philadelphia area for nearly twenty years. She is excited to be relocating to her native Massachusetts. In the past, she has served as Artistic Director for the Rainbow Chorale of Delaware, Director of Music at First United Methodist Church of Germantown (PA) and Director of Choirs at Philadelphia's Central High School. Ellie has been praised for her success in working with singers at all levels and her ability to create interesting programs showcasing music from diverse repertoires.She received her undergraduate training in voice at Indiana University and her master's degree in Choral Conducting and Music History from Temple University. In addition to her conducting activities, Ellie is an active composer and the owner and president of Hildegard Publishing Company, a publisher of concert music by women composers.
This year NACC also welcomes Mr. Mark Bartlett. Mark earned his Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance with Laurence Davis, Northwestern University, earned graduate credit at Tufts University, and studied pianos at the New England Conservatory with Konstantinos Papadakis,. He is the rehearsal accompanist with the New World Chorale, Holly Krafka, conductor. He also performed in several capacities with organizations such as the Assabet Valley Mastersingers, the Masterworks Chorale Summer Sings, and the Masterworks Chorale. He is a member of the Boston Piano Amateurs Association, the Boston Piano Amateurs Association, and the Associated Chamber Music Players.
We are honored to have the direction of two such accomplished artists.
Our Founder For 47 years, the group performed under the very able and creative direction of Founder/Director Anthony J. Volpe of Westborough, MA. Mr. Volpe was the Director of Music in the Spencer, Northborough, Southborough, and Medway Schools for forty years before his recent retirement.
Pictured below is Mr. Volpe with Mr. David L. Rose of Shrewsbury, MA, who was Mr. Volpe's accompanist for the past 20 years. Mr. Rose holds a Bachelors degree from the Cleveland Institute of Music and a Master’s degree in Performance from the New England Conservatory of Music. He has been playing the piano since age 5 and is currently the Bank Manager for Commerce Bank and Trust in Hudson and Marlborough as well as a professional piano instructor.
The NACC family misses these men and wishes them well on their retirement from our community group.
About the Details Our Concerts
How Many? The NACC performs two concerts per year, a Christmas concert in December and a spring concert in May.
What Do We Sing? We sing just about everything, from Handel to the Beatles, choral versions of popular Broadway shows, the music of certain time periods, light opera, spirituals, holiday carols and religious chorals. Our Holiday Concert in December consists of Holiday music (secular and religious). Our Spring Concert is usually a fanfare of classical, popular and Broadway selections blended in a pleasant choral tradition and style.
Don’t fret, there are NO AUDITIONS to become a member of NACC. However, at the discretion of our Musical Director, there may be voluntary auditions for those musical selections that require soloist and ensemble performances. The overall musical experience of the chorus ranges from professional vocalists to just about anyone who is willing to sing. The ability to read music IS NOT a requirement but is certainly encouraged as a skill to learn. If you are also an instrumentalist, we encourage your instrumental participation by providing voluntary opportunities to accompany the chorus.
Tickets and Ad Sales
Members are given 10 tickets to each concert and asked to sell them to family, friends, colleagues, co-workers, and interested persons. Ticket cost is low at $5.00 per ticket so there is usually no problem selling out. Some members come back for additional tickets, others turn a few back in. The chorus encourages the sales of ads which appear in our Concert Program and Playbill. Ticket and Ad sales are strongly encouraged (but not mandatory) to offset costs and expenses, as NACC is a non-profit organization operating on a limited budget.
Rehearsal and Attendance
Open rehearsals will run through the month of September. New members are always welcome.
Rehearsals are held on Tuesdays from 7:30 to 9:30 PM and on three nights the week prior to the Concert performance. Attendance on a regular basis IS expected. Members should try to miss no more than 4 scheduled concert rehearsals. Attendance at the Concert performance is mandatory. As always, extenuating circumstances that prevent attendance are certainly understood. Consequently, the Chorus Executive Board may waive the attendance requirement provided that the individual member is well prepared for the concerts.
Simple but elegant! Black ankle length dresses, nylon stockings, and black shoes for the ladies (we supply the corsage) and black jackets, white dress shirts, bow tie, white pants, and black shoes for the men (we supply the boutonniere).
Board of Directors
Eileen Dame - President
- Vice President
Anastasia Lund - Treasurer
Janet Patayon -Secretary
Mary Desautels - Member at Large
Amy Brayley - Member at Large
The NACC is supported in part by grants from the Northborough, Westborough, Marlborough, and Shrewsbury Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported in part by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.