Fall Newsletter 2011

In this Issue:   
Letter from the RCSF President
RCSF Senior Common Room Announcement

Letter from the RCS President

A New Logo for RCSF


Songbook Request


NYC Mini-Tour Announcement


Appeal for Summer Tour 2012


RCS Retreat Recap


RCS History Blog Announcement



Facebook Announcement


RCSF now has a Facebook group, where you can get news and updates from RCSF/RCS and reconnect with fellow alumnae! If you want to join the group, click the button below and then click on "Ask to Join Group" in the upper right-hand corner of the page. One of our administrators will add you as soon as possible!  


Like us on Facebook 

Please support RCS and its tour to Turkey, Serbia, Croatia, and Bulgaria!  You can make a tax-deductible gift through the following link:

Donate Here!  

Letter from the RCSF President, Jenny Wolahan '07

Dear alumnae and friends,


It was just over a year ago that members of the Friends of the Radcliffe Choral Society voted to start the Foundation.  In that time we've seen an enormous amount happen--thanks overwhelmingly to the amazing women who have stepped onto our board and our committees.  Here are a few examples of what those committees have been doing recently, to provide you with a flavor of RCSF life:


The Student Affairs Committee, under Antonia Fraker '09, recently welcomed a new group of singers and continues to work with the chorus on their (quite enviable!) tour to Turkey, Serbia, Croatia, and Bulgaria.


The Governance Committee, under Margaret Loss '67, just completed a revision of our bylaws and submitted our 501(c)(3) application to the IRS, requesting federal tax-exempt status.


The Alumnae Affairs Committee, under Marianne Cook  '02, just welcomed local alumnae and current RCS members to a third annual alumnae/student sing at Youville House, a Cambridge assisted-living facility.


The Finance Committee, under Julie Yao Cooper '85, is currently creating a strategic plan for an RCSF endowment.


The Development Committee, under Ann Marie Lindquist '84, is planning a special event in NYC and beginning the process of soliciting pledges for annual giving and ultimately endowment growth.


The Nominating Committee, under Deepa Dhume '05, just completed a review of board responsibilities and structure and is looking toward future recruitment.


This is just a sample of the activities taking place at the moment, and trust me when I say that none of it would be possible without our wonderful and tireless committee chairs and members.  My first year as president has been a pleasure entirely because of the boundless energy, enthusiasm, and devotion of everyone I've worked with, whether alumna, student, or other interested friend.


This year, we'd love to give more of you the chance to get involved in whatever way you'd like--whether by offering wisdom, expertise, or simply good will.  If any of those to apply to you, read on for a description of the newly formed RCSF Senior Common Room.  We hope to welcome you to it!


All the best,


Jenny Wolahan '07

President, Radcliffe Choral Society Foundation

Holden Foundation Gathering
Summer gathering of the three Holden Foundations; David Lyczkowski '99 HRCMF, Tom Bridge '79 HRCMF, Jenny Wolahan '07 RCSF


RCSF Senior Common Room Announcement


The Radcliffe Choral Society Foundation's Senior Common Room is a network of interested RCS alumnae who will provide the Radcliffe Choral Society or the Foundation with expert advice, wise counsel and volunteer support.  To join the RCSF Senior Common Room, you need only express your enthusiasm and willingness to be available to respond to questions or provide expertise or access to information and resources that will support the mission of RCS.  For instance, do you have experience with recording, touring, fundraising, or investing?  Do you volunteer for or manage a nonprofit arts organization?  Are you a professional singer, or have you continued to sing in a community chorus?  Or do you simply want to be more involved?  If so, and you are willing to share your time and talents, you can become part of the roster of the RCSF Senior Common Room.  The RCS Foundation will provide you with a "virtual" common room, so that you can connect easily with your "sisters in song" who are excited to hear what you have to say.  To join, email Deepa Dhume at [email protected].

Letter from the RCS President, Natalie Panno '12 

Dear Alumnae of the Radcliffe Choral Society,


It is my great honor to be writing to you as the 2011-2012 President of RCS. We have had a very eventful September, beginning with welcoming 23 wonderful new singers to the group. At our traditional retreat to Hingham, Massachusetts, with the Glee Club, we performed a selection of medieval and Renaissance pieces as well as two portions of Mozart's Requiem for the congregations at Old Ship and First Baptist Churches. RCS sounds amazing, barely two weeks after we first gathered as a complete choir! We're on our way to a fantastic year.


Our fall semester is a busy one, starting with a brief appearance at Harvard's 375th anniversary with the other Holden Choruses and HRO, and concluding with our holiday concert with HGC, "Christmas in Sanders" (December 3), which will include the world premiere of Dan Locklair's Winter, a piece commissioned by RCS and HGC and featuring the groups both combined and separately. We'll also be appearing with HRCM in "Madrigals & Motets" (November 5), and combining with alumnae for our yearly Youville Sing (October 2).


We have much to look forward to for the spring, including gathering with alums for our annual History Tea in February, performing the complete Mozart's Requiem with the rest of Holden, being featured with Holden once again in our ARTS FIRST performance with HRO of Ravel's Daphnis et Chloé Suite No. 1 & 2, and a mini-tour to New York City during the last weekend of March. I hope to meet many of you at our two concerts there, including one at the Harvard Club! Also planned for the spring semester is a 'Cliffe Notes reunion jam celebrating 'CN's 20th anniversary. We'll be capping off our amazing year with a tour to Turkey, Bulgaria, Serbia, and Croatia, where we will collaborate with professional and university choirs and participate in both a choral festival in Bulgaria and an international choral competition in Croatia.


We could not be nearly so ambitious with our plans for the year and for the future without the continued help and support of the Radcliffe Choral Society Foundation and, of course, our wider network of alumnae. I am eager to see what the year holds for RCS and look forward to sharing with you our music and our memories.


Warm regards,


Natalie Panno '12

RCS President, 2011-2012


RCS Retreat 2011
RCS 2011 Retreat in Hingham

A New Logo for the Radcliffe Choral Society Foundation
RCSF Logo 

We are pleased to introduce a new Radcliffe Choral Society Foundation logo, designed by alumna Sarah S. Brannen.  The clean, classic look of this image connects us to RCS and its logo while establishing RCSF as a strong independent entity.  Thank you, Sarah, for giving us a visual representation of our launch into this new era!


Here's a bit more about our designer.  Sarah S. Brannen has illustrated over a dozen books for children. She is the author and illustrator of Uncle Bobby's Wedding, which, according to the American Library Association's Office for Intellectual Freedom, was one of the ten most frequently challenged and banned books in the United States in 2008. Sarah also illustrated The Pig Scramble (Islandport Press, 2011); Mathias Franey, Powder Monkey (Twin Lights Publishers, 2011); The ABC Book of American Homes; and Digging for Troy: From Homer to Hisarlik, both for Charlesbridge Publishing. Forthcoming books include Tooth Truth (Scholastic Press, 2013) and The Ugly Duckling (Sterling Publishing, 2013).


Sarah has an AB from Harvard University and an MFA from the University of Pennsylvania. She also writes for icenetwork.com and Skating Magazine. To see more of Sarah's work, visit www.sarahbrannen.com.

Songbook: Request for Repertoire!

Is there a piece that reminds you of your days in RCS? Are there works that you sang in RCS that have stayed with you throughout your life?
Please share them!

We are compiling a list of favorite RCS repertoire through the ages to combine into an RCS Songbook (similar to HGC's Songbook) that we can use at future alumnae sings. If you have suggestions for some of your favorite pieces from RCS repertoire to include in the Songbook, please email them to Katie Woolf at [email protected]

Please limit submissions to women's repertoire only, although submissions from any and all time periods are encouraged. Please also include your class year in the email--we want to make sure as many generations are represented as possible!

NYC Mini-Tour Announcement: RCS in NYC!


RCS will be taking a weekend trip to New York City in March, so mark your calendars!  We will be performing at the Harvard Club of New York (27 W. 44th Street) on Friday, March 30th at 7:30pm and at Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church (302 W. 91st Street) on Saturday, March 31st at 8:00pm.  We hope to see you at one (or both!) of our concerts.  We are also planning an alumnae reception to follow one of the concerts.  If you are interested in hosting RCSers for the weekend or otherwise helping with this tour, please contact Amy Lifland at [email protected].


Update on Summer Tour


We are very excited and proud that tour planning has developed rapidly in the past month. RCS will be headed to the cities of Istanbul, Plovdiv, Sofia, Belgrade, and Zagreb, with six concerts, a festival, and a competition ending the tour in mid-June. The group will perform with women's, men's, and mixed choirs, from university to professional levels. We are also excited about the many cultural exchange opportunities, as well as the sightseeing and outreach plans in store.




We are still reaching out to not-for-profit organizations in Istanbul, Belgrade, and Zagreb for musical and community service outreach opportunities. If you have suggestions, please email Olivia Pei and Katherine Reifler at  [email protected].   


This tour will only be possible through the generous support of our alumnae.  Please consider making a gift to help ensure that all current singers can participate in this life-changing trip. 


Thank you to all the alumnae so far who have helped us put this tour together. We are confident that it will be an incredible experience!



RCS Retreat Recap


Once again the Radcliffe Choral Society and Harvard Glee Club travelled out to beautiful Hingham, MA for our annual Fall Retreat.  The cool fall weather in the small town setting was the perfect way to start preparing for the busy upcoming year. RCS successfully prepared much of its repertoire including O Magnum Mysterium by de Morales, O Rubor Sanguinis by Hildegard von Bingen, and parts of Mozart's Requiem, which we performed at the First Baptist Church and then alongside the Glee Club at Old Ship Church. RCS grew more united in song and sisterhood through its rehearsals as well as its annual scavenger hunt and bonding activities.  After completing rehearsal, RCS held its Bead Ceremony and revealed the new Big/Little Sister pairs for the year, sharing fond memories of years past and hopes for the year to come.  We look forward to sharing both our music and RCS traditions with RCSF during the year and hope to see you in Cambridge!

New Members at RCS 2011 Retreat      

RCS History Blog 


RCS has recently created a Tumblr blog to highlight a wonderful range of content from RCS past and present, including recordings, images, ephemera, quotes, and updates. It is both a fantastic archive and an actively updated source for great news, pictures, memories, and music - from yesterday and today!

We would love all of you to contribute your favorite memories and ephemera. If you have something to contribute, either electronically or in hard copy, please email
 [email protected] and let us know.

The Tumblr is updated often, so be sure to bookmark the page and check back for new posts.  You can also:

1) Follow our Tumblr from your personal  Tumblr account.

2) Add our RSS Feed to your feed reader.

3) Check out our posts through the RCS Facebook page.