Pro Musica Chorus of Ogdensburg celebrates 50th anniversary by awarding scholarships
Sunday, July 16, 2017 - 8:47 am

OGDENSBURG -- Pro Musica Chorus of Ogdensburg is celebrating the 50th Anniversary of its founding.

The chorus is pleased to announce the recipients of its 2017 50th Anniversary scholarships. To mark this significant year the group offered two $100 scholarships to each of five area schools.

The graduating seniors were recommended by their choral music teachers at Ogdensburg Free Academy, Heuvelton Central School, Lisbon Central School, Madrid-Waddington Central School and Morristown Central School.

All of these talented seniors have excelled in the arts, music and theater in addition to academics during their high school careers, said a Pro Musica press release.

A scholarship is awarded annually at Ogdensburg Free Academy in memory of Sally Bibbens, who co-founded the Ogdensburg chorus in 1967 and directed the group for many years.

Mrs. Bibbens’ goal was to offer the community the pleasure of choral music and the opportunity to enjoy music by singing together. The scholarship is awarded to a graduating senior who has shown excellence in choral music during his or her high school years.

The 2017 recipient of the Bibbens Scholarship is Connor Banning. Mr. Banning will pursue a career in Animation and Illustration at SUNY Fredonia.

The Ogdensburg Pro Musica 50th Anniversary Chorus Scholarship was given to students graduating from OFA and four neighboring school districts to celebrate the founding of the group and to promote participation in choral music in school and in the community.

The 2017 scholarships were given to the following graduating seniors who have excelled in choral music at their high schools: Brandon Bogart, Frankie Jo Besio, Collin Trathen, Cheyenne White, Joshua Barkley, Bethany Socia and Miranda Ditta.

OFA graduate, Brandon Bogart will attend Clarkson University to study computer engineering.

SUNY Canton is the destination for Heuvelton Central School recipients Frankie Jo Besio and Collin Trathen. Ms Besio will major in criminal justice, Mr. Trathen, engineering.

Theatre studies at SUNY Potsdam is the choice of Cheyenne White of Lisbon Central School.

Madrid-Waddington Central School selected Joshua Barkley and Bethany Socia. Mr. Barkley will attend The Crane School of Music with a concentration in music business. Ms. Sochia plans to study liberal arts at SUNY Potsdam.

The recipient from Morristown Central School, Miranda Ditta, will major in childhood education at Jefferson Community College.

Pro Musica also encourages elementary age children to participate in choral music. Recent concerts have included approximately 15 talented young singers from the city elementary schools who were chosen by their music teachers.

The children have sung with the chorus at the annual Christmas and spring concerts since 2014 and will be invited to participate in the 2017 Christmas Concert. The children’s numbers are an audience favorite.

Pro Musica hopes that the scholarship recipients and the young singers mentioned above will become future members of the organization, or that they join a choral group in the communities where they live.

Funds for the scholarships are raised from member dues and proceeds from the annual spring and Christmas concerts.

The fall session in preparation for the 50th Annual Christmas Concert will begin in September.

New members to Pro Musica are always welcome.

For more information about the group, call Beth Leroux at 315-393-4190.