The Clintonville Community Choir, now in its 12th season, is in a state of transition.
Brandon Hollihan, who has been the group's conductor since 2013, will be leaving to obtain a doctorate of musical arts at the University of Notre Dame. Hollihan, who teaches vocal music at Whetstone High School and is the choir director and organist at Northwest United Methodist Church, said the timing just seemed right after 11 years in Columbus.
"I have a lot of amazing memories," he said.
The choir's annual summer concert will be his last.
The concert will be held at 7 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 6, in the Whetstone Park of Roses Pavilion, 3923 N. High St.
Taking Hollihan's place will be Ryan Jenkins, until recently assistant conductor, vocal coach and manager of the University of Toronto Men's Chorus. Jenkins obtained his bachelor's degree in vocal performance at Ohio State University in May 2015.
"I think you're going to really love Ryan, because he's nothing like me," Hollihan told choir members during a recent rehearsal. "I hope he'll challenge you guys."
"It's something I knew I would fit into," Jenkins said. "They're very responsive. You can ask them to do something and they're going to work with you. It's not like pulling teeth.
"For a community group, they are quite good."
Jenkins will be the choir's fourth director. One of the group's founders, Tom Maxwell, led the choir from its inception until 2013 when Brandon L. Moss took over until he was succeeded by Hollihan.
John Hamilton, formerly of Clintonville and now living in a retirement community in the Northland area, is one of a handful of founding members still singing with the choir.
"For me personally, I've been singing in church choirs since I was 3 years old," he said. "I am very pleased with the group. Certainly in the last few years we've risen to the level of almost professional."
"The camaraderie in this group is just wonderful," choir member Mic O'Halloran said. "We want to have a good time and give a good concert to the people."
"It's exciting hearing the parts come together, singing with a group as opposed to alone," his wife, Ann, said.
Denise Baumann of Clintonville heads up the C'ville Songsters, an a cappella subset of the choir that was formed in 2009. In addition to performing at concerts, Baumann said the Songsters support the organization through appearances at retirement centers and other venues.
Baumann said the Songsters decidewhat they will sing once the conductor determines how many they will have in any given concert.
"We always manage to come to a consensus," she said.
In announcing the Aug. 6 concert, Mic O'Halloran said that the Clintonville Community Choir, in addition to Broadway and jazz songs, often performs works composed by the late John Ness Beck.
The former Clintonville resident, who died of cancer at age 56 in 1987, was a composer and conductor of choral music who owned and operated the University Music House.