Upcoming Events

  • Spring Recitals: April-May
  • Outreach Performance at Edenwald: TBA
  • Honors Concert: May 19 @ 6:00 in Centennial Hall
  • LS Art Show/Instrumental Fair: May 21

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The American Kodály Children’s Chorus

Overview | Class Descriptions | How to Join | Faculty | Fees & Payment | Contact

The American Kodály Children’s Chorus at Bryn Mawr is dedicated to offering all boys and girls ages 5-18 in the greater Baltimore area access to high quality music training in a nurturing environment.

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Students do not need to be enrolled at Bryn Mawr to join. The chorus strives for excellence by providing students with:

  • Vocal pedagogy-based choral and solo singing instruction
  • Kodály method and play-based musicianship coursework
  • Local, regional, and international performance opportunities

Choristers learn to sing, read, and write music through engagement with a diverse repertoire of classical, spiritual, and folk music from many traditions. The unique rehearsal and classroom environments offer an enriched learning environment and opportunities for positive social interaction with peers.

Class Descriptions and Schedules 


Training choir with local performance opportunities. Each choir rehearsal is accompanied by one musicianship class. Students are placed in classes according to skill level.

Schedule: Meets on Tuesdays 5:00-6:30pm


Training choir with local performance opportunities. Each choir rehearsal is accompanied by one musicianship class. Students are placed in classes according to skill level.

Schedule: Meets on Tuesdays 5:00-7:00pm

Concert Choir

Touring choir. Each choir rehearsal is accompanied by one musicianship class. Students are placed in classes according to skill level.

Schedule: Meets on Tuesdays 6:30-8:30pm

Classes for both choirs begin Tuesday, September 16, 2014 and end Tuesday, May 19, 2015.

How to Join

  1. Interview to be part of the chorus
    Each student will need to set up an interview in order to be placed appropriately in the musicianship classes and choruses. Interviews will be conducted by Dr. Alyson Shirk and will last 30-45 minutes. Be prepared to sing a song of choice and play musical games to determine placement.
    To schedule an interview, contact Dr. Shirk at Acceptances with chorus and class placement information will be emailed following the interview.
  2. Complete Registration
    Download and complete registration forms (see Registration Forms in top right corner)
    Return form with payment to:
    Jacyln Orchard
    Bryn Mawr Music School
    109 W. Melrose Ave
    Baltimore, MD 21210.


Dr. Alyson Shirk
Director of Music

Dr. Alyson Shirk serves as Director of Music for The Bryn Mawr School in Baltimore, Maryland. She earned her doctorate in vocal performance from Shenandoah Conservatory in 2009, where she was awarded the Dean’s Graduate Scholar Award for excellence in scholarship for her dissertation “Mad Women in Opera: An Investigation of Madness and Selected Mad Scenes for Soprano." In 2009, Shirk taught master classes and performed the Brahms’ Requiem with the Ho Chi Minh Symphony Orchestra in Vietnam. In 2010, she studied and performed the music of Argentine composer Carlos Guastavino in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Shirk is the Artistic Director for the American Kodály Children’s Chorus, in residence at Bryn Mawr. Her Bryn Mawr and Children’s Chorus choirs have performed at such prestigious venues as Carnegie Hall, the Kennedy Center, The US State Department, and The Blair House. Shirk conducted children from the Children's Chorus of Maryland on a tour to Budapest, Hungary in July 2013, where they were keynote performers at the Kodály Institute's Seminar at the International Kodály Symposium opening concert. In addition to her work at Bryn Mawr, Shirk is a frequent choral clinician, adjudicator, and master class teacher.

Suzannah Norris teaches pre-K through 8th grade general music at Our Lady of Hope/St. Luke’s School in Baltimore, Maryland. She also teaches Music Together® classes for young children and their families at the Abbott Center for the Arts. Norris earned a B.A. in Music with an emphasis in Vocal Performance from Eastern University. She received a master's degree in music education with Kodály emphasis from Loyola University in 2010 and returned as a professor of Solfa levels I and III in 2012.

Rachel Kershner teaches elementary vocal/general music for the Howard County Public School System in Maryland. She earned her bachelor's degree in Music Education with a vocal concentration from Towson University in 2012. She is currently working on her Kodály certification and master’s degree in Kodály Music Education at Loyola University Maryland. Rachel also plays the flute and piano and is an active member of the National Association for Music Education, the American Choral Directors Association, and the Organization for American Kodály Educators. 

Jim Javorsky teaches music to students grades K-5 at Red Pump Elementary School in Harford County. He received his bachelor’s degree in Music Education with an emphasis in Voice from Ohio’s Bowling Green State University. In 2012, Jim received his master’s degree in Music Education from the American Kodály Institute at Loyola University, Maryland.


Fees and Payment

  • Cantus: $1000
  • Lyric: $1100
  • Concert Choir: $1200

Cancellation/Refund Policy

A full refund, less $100 enrollment deposit, will be granted for withdrawal until the first rehearsal is held. Refund requests must be submitted in writing to Dr. Alyson Shirk at Once the first rehearsal is held, choristers will be considered fully enrolled.


Dr. Alyson Shirk, Director of Music
The Bryn Mawr School
410-323-8800 x1668

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Registration Forms