Dr. Jill Campbell
Richard Sowers, retired, is the former Director of Music Ministries for Williamsburg UMC (VA), Southern Hills UMC in Lexington, KY and Christ Episcopal Church in Bowling Green, KY. He also founded the Williamsburg Bach Choir and Handel Chamber Orchestra while conducting in Virginia. He is the former Music Director and Conductor of the Abington Symphony Orchestra where he also served as Director of Music Ministries for Abington Presbyterian Church near Philadelphia. During his ten years as Director of Choral Activities at Lindsey Wilson College, he was also Music Director of The Louisville Chorus and founder of the Columbia Choral Society (KY). Early in his career he appeared frequently with Kentucky Opera Association, was an Associate and Artistic Director for regional opera companies throughout the U.S. An often featured singer, he has performed with Actor's Theatre of Louisville, on WHAS-TV, and with the Louisville Bach Society. He was the 1st-place winner of the Metropolitan Opera Auditions and for 4 seasons performed the title role in “The Stephen Foster Story” in Bardstown, KY and in Tokyo, Japan. He holds applied music degrees from the University of Louisville Music School, sang with the prestigious Indiana University Opera Theater and completed doctoral studies as a graduate assistant in conducting at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. Sowers attributes his deep love of JS Bach to his teacher-mentors Fletcher Smith, Gerhard Herz, Melvin Dickinson, Alan Harler, Julius Herford, John Alexander, John Wustman, Robert Shaw, Elmer Thomas, John Lehman, Earl Rivers and Maestro Teri Murai.
Jill Campbell holds a Ph.D. in music education from the University of Kentucky where she studied choral music teacher attitudes in regards to sex-specific adolescent vocal change. She completed BMME in vocal music education, a minor in violin performance, an MM in choral conducting, and a Rank 1 in Music Education. Additionally, she earned the Graduate Certificate in Orff Schulwerk, Music for Children. Dr. Campbell has experience teaching at the elementary, middle, and collegiate levels, and has worked in many areas of church music. Dr. Campbell was a founding director of the Lexington Singers Children's Choir and conducted with them for eight seasons. Dr. Campbell has been teaching at Asbury University for six years and is currently Associate Professor of Music Education and Voice where she directs the 75-voice Asbury Women’s Choir. In February 2018, Dr. Campbell was pleased to direct the Asbury University Women’s Choir in an invited performance at the KMEA state music conference. This was the first appearance by the choir at the conference. She teaches the following courses at Asbury: elementary general music methods, elementary vocal music methods, secondary choral music education methods, opera workshop, conducting, and voice lessons. Dr. Campbell serves as the head of the vocal area within the music department and supervises student teachers in choral and general music education. Additionally, she chairs the Artist Series Committee for Asbury. She is the President-Elect for the Kentucky chapter of the American Choral Directors Association. Her term as president begins on July 1, 2019.
Marlon Hurst has been the Artistic Director of the Kentucky Bach Choir since the fall of 2009. A native of London, Kentucky, Marlon holds a bachelor's degree in sacred music from Cumberland College (KY) (1990) where he was a student of Dr. Joe Tarry and a master of music in choral conducting from the University of Tennessee (1992) where he studied with Dr. David Stutzenberger. From 1997-2002, he was the Director of Music at Conyers Presbyterian Church (GA). While in the Atlanta area, he sang with Robert Shaw and Norman Mackenzie in the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus and Chamber Chorus, and in 2002 was a member of the professional chorus, the Atlanta Singers. Through the Carnegie Hall Conductor’s Workshop, he has sung under the baton of Helmut Rilling, Andre’ Previn, and Sir Neville Marriner. Since 2003, Marlon has lived in Kentucky where he is the Director of Music and Arts at First Presbyterian Church of Lexington. He is a past President of the Board of the Presbyterian Association of Musicians.