NEW GLASGOW – Monica George Punke is passing the torch.
After 19 years of directing, teaching, guiding and building the Pictou District Honour Choir, Punke is retiring as artistic director and conductor of the choirs associated with this program.
Taking over from her will be PDHC graduate Scott Jones.
Jones is also a graduate from Mount Allison University and a graduate student in Choral Conducting at the University of Winnipeg.
“Scott will bring his varied musical experiences and considerable piano and choral talents to benefit both the Honour Choir program and Pictou County as a whole,” Punke said.
Jones will be assisted by his sister, Sherise Jones, also a graduate of PDHC and a graduate in Music Therapy from Acadia University.
“It’s such a thrill to see our graduates return ‘home’ and offer wonderful opportunities for learning and performing to the next generation,” says Punke. “That’s what teaching is all about: helping young people develop the skills to enjoy the present moment, and leaving a legacy of skilled and enthusiastic musicians to carry on that work. It doesn’t get any better that this!”
Punke will continue her association with the Pictou District Honour Choir by directing the beginner choir for Grades 1 to 4, Chor Alpha, and by acting as voice coach for the senior part of the program known as Chor Omega, for Grades 5 to 12. In all of this she will be assisted by Sherise Jones. Sandra Johnson will remain as choir accompanist.