Penn State Mont Alto concert features two local residents

— By PAT FRIDGEN, Echo Pilot
Members of the 2015-16 Penn State Mont Alto Student Chorale are, l-r: (back row) Randall Ackerman, director of campus development; Taryn Sloat; Marissa Bubbenmoyer; Jamie Buxton, pianist; Ben Stouffer; Avery Pakstis; David Bowman, director; Austin Burns; Mariah Boccardi; (front row) Taylor Figgins; Alexis Medina; Kim Herrmann, assistant professor of physics; Lara Vera; Christine Bair; and Christine Nyangwenyo.

A new singing group will be adding to the music of the season with a performance at Greencastle Presbyterian Church on Sunday. Ben Stouffer, a graduate of Greencastle-Antrim High School, sings bass with the Penn State Mont Alto Student Chorale.

The public is invited to the holiday event which features the music of Mozart, Schubert, Isaac and Haydn, as well as contemporary and traditional Austrian Christmas carols. It will begin at 1:30 p.m. and is free of charge.

Stouffer, 23, a senior majoring in Human Development and Family Studies, is participating for the second year. Members of the chorale receive one credit per semester, and must attend all meetings and scheduled concerts. He had several reasons for joining the group representing the college.

"We sing great songs like Mozart and Haydn, different cool and interesting pieces as well," he said. "Most of all I love hanging out with friends and being part of the Mont Alto community."

Stouffer also sang in the Concert Choir at G-AHS.

The Chorale is not limited to students. Randall Ackerman, Greencastle, director of campus development, also sings, as does a physics professor.

Stouffer said Ackerman was also an ambassador promoting the group. "He does a little bit of everything behind the scenes."

The choral group was made possible by Kathryn Miner, wife of the late John A. Miner, who established the Miner Endowment for the Penn State Mont Alto Student Choir in 2013. As part of the endowment, the group performs on and off campus.

It was at the college's Emmanuel Chapel Dec. 4 for its first event, and will conclude Friday, Dec. 18 in Gettysburg before Totem Pole Playhouse and Gettysburg Community Theater present "A Christmas Carol" at Majestic Theater. At 5 p.m. that evening the Chorale will provide roving seasonal music for shoppers and theater attendees in the downtown square.