About Us

Welcome to your source of information for the Skutt Catholic High School Vocal Music Department! This site is one of the best ways for students, parents, alumni, and friends to stay connected to the vibrant and exciting world of singing at Skutt Catholic. We are currently celebrating the 23rd year of singing at our school. Being part of this program teaches students the importance of teamwork, the value of hard work, the ethic of good sportsmanship, and develops self confidence. Studies show that students who participate in programs such as this get better grades, have higher graduation rates, and get into less trouble than the student population as a whole. Thank you for visiting skuttcatholic.com, and may a song be ever in your heart!


2015-2016 Honors Concert Choir (Chamber Choir)

Sophomores, juniors and seniors, with at least one year (2 semesters) of high school choir experience, may audition for this performance oriented class.  Auditions will be held during the month of April for the upcoming school year. Honors Concert Choir will consist of 16-24 balanced voices, and will meet separately from the Concert Choir.  Honors credit is issued to all students who are a member of Honors Concert Choir. The ensemble will perform at four home concerts each year, as well as compete in District Music Contest. Honors Concert Choir students will sing a variety of music throughout the year, including music from all time periods and styles.  In addition, the students meet their honors credit requirement by completing a research project in conjunction with each of the four home concerts. Honors Concert Choir members, like Concert Choir members, will have the opportunity to audition for All State, Regional and National Honor Choirs, Vivace show choir, Musettes women’s choir, and Hawkappella men’s choir.  Singing with the Music Ministry ensemble for All-School Masses is always voluntary.

Congratulations to everyone who auditioned for the Honors Concert Choir. The auditions were very competitive and I'm looking forward to working with both ensembles next year. We have some very talented singers here at Skutt Catholic, so 2015-2016 will certainly be an exciting year!

2015-2016 Honors Concert Choir Members are listed here - Honors Concert Choir 2015-16

 


2016-2017 Vivace Auditions - Wednesday, May 18

We are seeking all interested male and female students for the 2015-2016 Vivace Show Choir.  Auditions will be held on Wednesday, May 18 beginning at 3:30 p.m. in the Skutt Catholic Music Room.  There is a required choreography learning session on Monday, May 16 in the SC Commons from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.  An optional choreography review will take place on Tuesday, May 17th from 3:30 to 4:00 p.m. in the SC Music Room - A165.

Singing Portion:  Come prepared to sing 30-45 seconds of a Broadway or pop song that represents your singing ability AND “America” (My Country ‘Tis of Thee).  You will sing both songs a cappella (without accompaniment).

Dance Portion:  The audition choreography will be taught in conjunction with Musical auditions on Monday, May 16.  This way, those auditioning will all have the same amount of time to prepare for their audition.  Wear comfortable shoes and clothes that you can move in for both the choreography learning session on May 16th and the audition on May 18th.

Everyone must earn their spot in the ensemble and all spots are open. Please prepare to the best of your ability to have a great audition. The audition packet can be found here Vivace audition packet 2016-2017. We also need instrumentalists for the back-up band. We are looking for keyboards, trap-set, bass, and percussion! If you are, or know of, someone who might be interested, please contact Mr. Storm at cjstorm@schools.archomaha.org or stop by the music room to talk with him personally.

2015-2016 Vivace Show Choir Members are listed here - 2015-2016 Vivace Members

 


National Memorial Day Choral Festival - May 27 - June1, 2016

Having received approval from the Skutt Catholic Administration, I have accepted an invitation for our choirs to join choirs from across the United States for the Memorial Day Choral Festival at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in May and June of 2016. This festival chorus combines under the direction of Dr. Craig Jessop, former Lientenant Colonel in the U.S. Air Force Music Programs, and Music Director of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. Dr. Jessop was also the 2014 Nebraska All State Chorus Director.

This opportunity allows our singers in BOTH Concert Choir and Honors Concert Choir next year the distinction of singing in the internationally-renowned Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. It will also allow us to join with the American Veterans Center in paying tribute to America's Veterans. The theme of the 2016 festival is a Commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of the Attack on Pearl Harbor. We will be able to experience our nation's capital during Memorial Day Weekend, while also working with one of America's foremost conductors. This is an unparalleled educational opportunity for our students that will, much like our 2014 tour to Rome, create memories that will last a lifetime. We are also extending our tour to add additional time in New York City!

While the itinerary is still a work in progress, highlights of the 5 night and 6 day tour currently include:
*Panoramic tours of Historic Washington, D.C.
*Festival Chorus rehearsals with Dr. Jessop and choirs from across the U.S.
*Tours of the Lincoln, Korean, WWII, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Martin Luther King, and Vietnam Memorials, as well as the Washington Monument.
*A Festival Wreath-Laying Ceremony
*The National Memorial Day Choral Festival Performance in the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
*Singing for the opening ceremonies of the National Memorial Day Parade
*NYC Sightseeing to possibly include viewing the Statue of Liberty, 9/11 Memorial, Empire State Building, Central Park, Lincoln Center, the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, Harlem, and Broadway.
*A planned evening at a Broadway Musical or Play

I am VERY excited about this opportunity and would LOVE to have all of our singers able to share in this opportunity. This really marks a great chance for our choirs to continue to raise their performance standard, and to continue to make a name for ourselves in the metro area, and across the Midwest. For more information on this Choir Festival and how you can get involved, please don't hesitate to contact Mr. Storm at cjstorm@schools.archomaha.org for an itinerary and payment information. Registration forms are due back on May 15th for current choir members. Choir members can sign up after the start of the 2015-2016 school year. In future years I am planning to continue choir department travel during the late Spring or early summer of each even-numbered year. We will continue with both domestic and international travel, as opportunities and worthwhile invitations arise. Please feel encouraged to share this travel information with friends who are still thinking about singing with us next year.

Sample Itinerary - 5_night_dc_and_nyc_itinerary.pdf

Choir Tour Registration Form - sc_dc_tour_registration_form.docx

 


Future Choir Tours and Travel

For planning and budgeting purposes, please keep these future Skutt Catholic Choir Department travel opportunities in mind.

2016-2017 - Vivace and Chamber Choir - February 9-12, 2017. Tour and Competition in Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin. This is an opportunity for both the Chamber Choir and Vivace to perform with and compete against choirs from across the Midwest. All members of Vivace and Chamber Choir will participate in this multi-day tour, which will also include workshops with highly-respected collegiate choral directors en route to our final destination. We will make every effort to fundraise for the cost of this tour so that there is little to no out-of-pocket expense for the student members of each ensemble.

2017-2018 - Skutt Catholic Choir Department - Late June and/or Early July, 2018. International Tour and Choral Festival planned through Music Celebrations International. This 9-day and 8-night choral festival is open to ANY AND ALL Skutt Catholic singers who would like to participate. If you are a singer who is or has worked under my direction at Skutt Catholic, this is a tour possibility for you - even if you have graduated! The tour will include singing in a festival chorus with choirs from around the world, as well as working with composers, conductors, and professional ensembles who already have a connection with our department. Like the tour to Rome in 2014, we will continue to offer this travel to alumni singers and current singers alike. We are currently researching ways for this type of travel to be tax-deductible for those who participate. I am very excited about this tour and look forward to the time when I can release more details about where we are going and who we will be working with! We want to have as many members of the program signed on to participate as possible, so please consider this as a once in a lifetime opportunity and start putting some funds away today! We will begin individual fundraising for this experience as soon as I'm able to get you the dates. More information will be available at the start of the 2016-2017 school year, as soon as the festival dates have been set.

 


Vocal Music Staff

Mr. Chris Storm, Director of Choral Activities and Piano

Chris Storm currently is in his 15th year of teaching, the last seven of which have been as Director of Choral Activities and Piano at Skutt Catholic High School in Omaha, NE. After completing his Bachelor of Music Education degree at South Dakota State University, and his Masters of Music degree at the University of South Dakota, Mr. Storm taught junior high and high school vocal music in South Dakota and Iowa before moving to Nebraska.

Mr. Storm has been actively involved in the American Choral Director’s Association since 1996. In 2002, he was a part of the North Central-ACDA Women’s High School Honor Choir planning committee. He is currently serving as the Nebraska Choral Director’s Association Show Choir Repertoire and Standards Chair, after serving as the District 2 East Representative. Mr. Storm has also been very involved in the National Association for Music Education since joining the SDSU Student chapter in the fall of 1996, eventually serving as that chapter’s vice president, and president. Mr. Storm has presided at state and regional conferences for both the ACDA and MENC. He has also presented sessions for the annual University of South Dakota Collegiate NAfME Day, for the Nebraska Music Educator's Association, and for the 2008 National NAfME Conference in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Choirs under Mr. Storm’s leadership have participated in extensive annual tours throughout the US. These performance tours have all been independently planned by Mr. Storm. Using networked resources, these choirs have performed at some of the most amazing churches, basilicas, and cathedrals in the country. His students have also had the opportunity to work with composers including Michael McGlynn, Judith Clurman, Moses Hogan, John Rutter, Tim Seelig, Z. Randall Stroope, and James Mulholland on several original and commissioned works.

For more information about the choirs at Skutt Catholic, please contact Mr. Storm at (402) 333-0818 ext. 1170, or at cjstorm@schools.archomaha.org.


Mrs. Beth Wagner, Collaborative Pianist - Concert Choir & Chamber Choir


Mrs. Renee Busskohl, Collaborative Pianist - Fall Musical


Mr. Ben Eklund, Vivace Choreographer

Ben Eklund is a freelance choreographer based out of Lincoln, Nebraska. He studied music at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and he is currently the assistant director and choreographer of the University of Nebraska collegiate show choir, Big Red Singers. He has been around championship and competitive choirs of all types since long before he could even walk, much less dance. He choreographs and clinics for a number of schools in Nebraska, Iowa, South Dakota, Minnesota, and Missouri. This past year he was one of three nominated by F.A.M.E. for the “Best New Choreographer” Aspire award. The schools with which he has had the pleasure of working have earned finals appearances, best vocals, best choreography, and Grand Champion honors.


Support Our Singers

Please assist our singers by taking part in our on-going and upcoming fundraisers. There are lots of opportunities to help out individual students or the entire department. Below are some opportunities you can take advantage of while on-line.


Vocal Music
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2014 Rome Tour Highlight Video

2014 International Choral Festival - Rome Concert

Recorded Live in Concert at Skutt Catholic