Brown University Chorus: Individual Development, Community Building, Cultural Exchange

Our Director, Fred Jodry

A Closer Look at L. Frederick Jodry
by Stephen Schwartz '91
(from the Brown Chorus Newsletter, Fall 1996)

The standard bio about our conductor, Fred Jodry, talks about his birthplace (Ohio), and his degrees and awards at New England Conservatory (Bachelor's in Organ Performance, Master's in Early Music Performance, Chadwick Medal). You hear about Schola Cantorum of Boston, the Renaissance vocal group he founded and directs. He sings countertenor (alto) and has sung as soloist with a long list of professional groups in New England. At Brown, along with being Director of Choral Activities, he teaches music history, harpsichord, and theory. He's also the organist and choirmaster at Trinity Church in Newport, Rhode Island (the classic white-spired New England church with the big front lawn in the center of town), where he has recently started a music performance series.

What the standard bio doesn't tell you about is his amazing personality and musical enthusiasm. After five minutes in a rehearsal with him, you know how lucky you are to get to work with him. He instantly fills us with energy, and overwhelms the exhaustion we often feel after a long day of classes, or a longer week of midterms and papers. When he sings a line to us, he does it in the correct octave for any voice part (because his range is over three octaves, all with a beautiful tone quality). His choices of material, tempos, shaping, tone, are always somehow appropriate, as is his presence when speaking to an audience (or anyone).One of his classmates from the New England Conservatory remarked that everything he does is outrageously talented. If I add that he's also fun, considerate, and constantly concerned for those around him, perhaps you get a sense of the pride we feel in singing in the Brown University Chorus under Fred Jodry.