(Matt Drzik/Beaver County Radio)
“First and foremost, you have to be a fine musician. But there’s so many other skills you have to learn, and we’re helping her learn those. That’s our goal.”
In 2022, the Beaver County Choral Society launched their inaugural Choral Conducting Scholar program, designed to give collegiate students the experience to not only conduct the singers and orchestra, but ultimately to plan, organize, polish, and execute a full performance piece from start to finish.
Miah Sirianni, a native of Buffalo, New York and current student at Duquesne University, became the first recipient of the Choral Conducting Scholar position, where she has already “dipped her toes” into working and conducting with the BVCS and Treble Youth Chorale. She was joined by Artistic Director Sharon Burchill and Vice President Pat Stagno on the November 14 edition of A.M. Beaver County to talk about her journey to learning and working with the Beaver Valley Choral Society.
“I came to Duquesne to pursue my Bachelor’s in Music Education,” Sirianni stated, “and through that I really found out that conducting was another one of my callings, if you will.” Sirianni found out about the BVCS through one of her professors at Duquesne who knew Mrs. Burchill, and that led to her obtaining this position: “I’m so fortunate and so grateful to the BVCS for all the opportunities they’ve given me.”
“We are having a ball with Miah,” Stagno added. “We’re really proud of her, and we’re really pleased to support young conductors and musicians, and one of the missions of the Beaver Valley Choral Society is to encourage and support young people…that’s the next generation of musicians, and we need to be behind them.”
Sirianni joined the BVCS as Choral Conducting Scholar for the Christmas concert season, but the plan–according to Burchill–is to have her become more heavily involved in the spring/Easter concerts. “For the spring, she will have a piece that she will introduce to the choir, teach the choir, conduct from beginning to end, the whole process,” Burchill said. “She’s going to be able to walk through, with mentorship, how to do that whole process, and she’ll conduct them at all the concerts.”
To watch the full conversation with Sharon, Pat, and Miah–click on the Facebook feeds below!