Hill Country Chorale, Kerrville, Texas

Singers and Performers

Sing with the Chorale

Interested in singing with us? Auditions are not required; only choral music experience and a sincere commitment to attend rehearsals each Monday evening from 6:30 P.M. to 8:30 P.M. in the choir room at First Presbyterian Church, Kerrville. The only cost involved in joining the Chorale is a $20 membership fee. Due to the amount of material that must be learned for performances, new singers are normally only accepted in the fall and in January.

Our concert season runs from September through May. We usually present three concerts and sometimes perform at other community events as time permits.

For more information about the Hill Country Chorale, please contact artistic director Claire Rabson, phone: 830-792-7262, email: cdrabson@yahoo.com.

Singers Handbook


Claire received a Bachelor's degree in Music and Education (with emphasis on conducting) from A&I University in Corpus Christi on a music scholarship. Professionally, she has directed church choirs in Corpus Christi, Denver, and the Texas Hill Country since she was 19. Claire has been Artistic Director of the Hill Country Vocal Arts Society (HC Chorale) since 2004.

Past President of the Board Dr. Robert Holloway has said, "Claire brings many gifts to the organization---she has great choral sense and knows how to achieve a good choral sound. She is especially skillful at diction and phrasing, is considerate and graceful, all the while aiming for the highest caliber performance."

Claire sings soprano with the San Antonio Master Singers and is also a member of the Canto Chamber Choir, Fredericksburg. She and husband David reside in Ingram.

Claire Rabson

ACCOMPANIST: Dr. Susan Soderstrom Matteson

Received the Doctor of Musical Arts Degree in organ performance from the Eastman School of Music in 1985, and also earned performance degrees from Indiana University (B Mus) and The Shepherd School of Music (M Mus) at Rice University in Houston, Texas. During her university studies she was the recipient of several performance and academic awards, including Eastman's Performer's Certificate, several graduate teaching fellowships, and various competition honors. She has studied organ with Clyde Holloway, Russell Saunders and Joanne Harris Rodland, and harpsichord with Arthur Haas and Colin Tilney. Doctoral work at Eastman included research on the organ works of contemporary American composer Ned Rorem. From 1986 to 1995 she taught and for a time was music department coordinator at Finger Lakes Community College, a part of the State University of New York system in the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York. Teaching responsibilities included Music Appreciation, Music History, Music Theory, Keyboard Skills, Piano, and accompanying all choral course offerings. While living in upstate New York Dr. Matteson was also active as a church musician and private teacher, and was highly sought after as an accompanist and concert artist. Active in the local musical life of her home community, she and fellow community musicians developed a well-received program of taking music into nursing and retirement homes. Dr. Matteson has performed nationally and internationally as an organ soloist, is an accomplished flautist, and was a charter member of the Young Organists Cooperative, a national concert management agency promoting organ recitalists. A solo organ concert tour of Sweden and Germany yielded critical acclaim from the Swedish media: "...a highly engaging performance combined with a well balanced and imaginative registration....brilliant technique combined with a clear personal view and exemplary articulation...dramatic, expressive...a very convincing musical achievement." Over the past 15 years she has presented a variety of organ concerts including several dedication recitals, performances in concert series, and in 1999 as a featured recitalist at the American Guild of Organists Regional Convention in Knoxville, Tennessee. Since moving to the Atlanta area in 1996 with her husband and their three sons, Dr. Matteson has been active as an accompanist (University of Georgia, Metropolitan Atlanta Young Singers, Choral Society of Atlanta, Atlanta Youth Choir, Capitol City Opera, miscellaneous freelance engagements), church organist (currently at All Saints Lutheran Church, Lilburn GA), and as a studio teacher (piano, flute, theory). From April 1997 until 1999 she held the position of Director of Music at Wesleyan School in Norcross, Georgia, where she designed and began implementation of a comprehensive musical studies and performance program for grades K - 12. Dr. Matteson continues to maintain a private lessons studio in her home, is currently Director of Education and Accompanist for the Atlanta Institute for Musicianship and Singing/ Atlanta Youth Choir, and accompanies in a variety of settings when time permits.



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Don Brady

Don Brady

Serle Crate

Searle Crate