KNOXVILLE CHORAL SOCIETY STAFF
Dr. John R. Orr
Dr. John R. Orr was born and raised in a musical family in Nashville, Tennessee where he began singing at an early age in school and church choirs. Beginning in grade school, he was a professional studio vocalist, recording children’s choir tracks for various Nashville children’s music publishers. He attended John Overton High School where he sang under the direction of Knoxville native and Tennessee choral music legend David Spencer who he credits with lighting a spark of passion for choral singing and life-long music making as a career.
Dr. Orr continued his music education in choral/vocal music and percussion, attending William Jewell College in Liberty MO where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Music Theory, Composition and Church Music. He also holds a Master of Music from Southern Seminary in Louisville, KY and the Doctor of Musical Arts in Choral Conducting from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa where he did research on the effects of aging on the amateur singing voice. Dr. Orr has studied choral conducting with Dr. Arnold Epley, Dr. John Dickson, Dr. Sandra Willetts and Dr. John Ratledge.
Dr. Orr’s career has always been a blend of church and community music making. He has served as a church musician in four different states and four different Christian denominations. In each setting, Dr. Orr has found a way to be involved in community music making through experiences such as directing a school of fine arts in Montgomery, Alabama to conducting a home-school youth choir in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. As a graduate student at Alabama, Dr. Orr served as Assistant Director for the Tuscaloosa Community Singers and created a University Chamber Singers ensemble. He has created Fine Arts concert series at three separate churches and currently directs the concert series at the Community Church in Tellico Village where he serves as Pastor of Music and Worship. Dr. Orr has written two units of children’s choir curriculum for Celebrating Grace publishing and will complete a third unit in 2018.
Dr. Orr joined the Knoxville Choral Society as a singer soon after moving to Tellico Village in 2010. In 2013, he was appointed conductor of the Knoxville Chamber Chorale and Assistant Director of the Knoxville Choral Society. He was appointed Artistic Director in 2018.
Assistant Director & Accompanist
Andrew Duncan is a pianist, conductor, multi-instrumentalist, and composer/arranger. He has served in full-time music ministry positions at several Knoxville area churches, and currently freelances as a conductor and clinician.Andrew received his Masters degrees in Choral Conducting and Piano Performance from the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. He is an arranger and composer and has orchestrated many anthems and carols for orchestra, choir, and handbells, and his music is published by Sheet Music Plus, Lorenz, Alfred, CadenzaOne, Discover Worship, GIA Music, and Ring-Press Music. He has served as clinician for multiple choral and handbell festivals, and his children’s opera “The Ugly Duckling” has been performed by regional opera companies all over the United States, including Nashville Opera and Opera Columbus. In addition to choral and orchestral music, Andrew is an enthusiast of bluegrass and Celtic music, and plays fiddle, accordion, tin whistle, and is currently learning to play the Uilleann pipes.
Andrew is the owner and operator of Handy Andy LLC, a local handyman and custom carpentry service company in Knoxville, TN. He lives in Knoxville, Tennessee with his wife Rachel and their three children, Natalie, Matthew, and Kate.
Leslie is the Director of Music Ministries at Fountain City United Methodist Church in Knoxville. She conducts vocal and and handbell choirs for youth and adults as well as planning worship with the pastoral staff. Formerly a high school music educator, Leslie still enjoys accompanying for local school choirs as much as possible.
OFFICERS OF THE BOARD
BOARD OF DIRECTORS