New Albany’s arts community is growing.

The latest addition is the New Albany Symphony Chorus, which will provide choral accompaniment to the New Albany Symphony Orchestra.

The chorus received a $600 grant from Ohio Arts Alliance Education, as well as a sponsorship from a Gahanna business, Garner said.

Although the orchestra has performed several pieces that include a choir, the outfit had worked with choirs from either Capital University or Capriccio Columbus, said orchestra executive director Heather Garner.

Because those groups have their own performance schedule, Garner said, they aren’t always available when the orchestra needs a choir.

Garner said she realized New Albany could have its own choir, but what really brought the idea some traction was her working relationship with Michael Martin, who will be the chorus’ director.

Martin already wears a few hats in the chorus community.

He is director of choral activities at Hilliard Darby High School and director of music at New Albany United Methodist Church. He also is the artistic director and founder of the Una Voce professional choral ensemble in Hilliard.

For its holiday concert in December, the New Albany Symphony Orchestra worked with Martin’s Una Voce, Garner said. The New Albany Symphony Chorus will include some members from Martin’s groups, as well as new members, she said.

“We’re really, really excited about it,” she said.

Martin said he looks forward to collaborating with Garner and New Albany Symphony Orchestra music director Luis Gabriel Biava.

For “Mahler 2: The Resurrection” at 3 p.m. Oct. 6 at the Jeanne B. McCoy Community Center for the Arts in New Albany, the chorus will include the 100-voice Hilliard Darby symphonic choir and Una Voce, Martin said. He said he anticipates adding new singers to meet the 150 voices required for the Mahler piece.

Starting a project from scratch is something that he has done many times and a practice that he enjoys, Martin said. He said he is excited about the growth of the arts in New Albany and the response to the city’s symphony orchestra.

“I think that this is just the next step, and I’m honored to be a part of it,” he said.

A first audition for the new chorus was held Aug. 6. Another audition is scheduled from 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 13, at the New Albany United Methodist Church, 20 Third St.

No appointments are needed. High school-aged individuals and older are welcome to audition, Garner said.

Instrumental auditions for the symphony’s 2019-20 season are on the same day at the church from 4 to 8 p.m.

For audition requirements and to schedule an audition, send an email to Bob Pfeifer at or call 614-733-0401 with the following information: instrument, years played, prior symphony experience and name of private teacher, if applicable.