Janet Hostetter, D.M.A.
Artistic & Executive Director
Janet M. Hostetter received her Doctor of Musical Arts degree and her Master of Music degree, both in choral conducting, from James Madison University, and her Bachelor of Music degree in music education from Eastern Mennonite University. Under Dr. Hostetter’s leadership, the Shenandoah Valley Children’s Choir has appeared with the American Boychoir (2017); at the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) southern division conference in Louisville, Kentucky (2018); at the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington D.C. (2019); at the Strathmore in North Bethesda, Maryland (2019); at choral festivals located across the United States; and in Peru with the children’s choir, Los K’ana Wawakuna (2017). Dr. Hostetter’s engagement with international children’s choirs since 2017 resulted in her documented research project entitled, “Tone Production, Musicianship Training, Repertoire Development, Performance Practice: A Pedagogical Overview of Selected International Children’s Choirs.” The four choirs featured in the study are the Gondwana Choirs under the direction of Lyn Williams in Australia; the Hail Mary the Queen Children’s Choir under the direction of Jude Roldan and Maria Theresa Vizconde Roldan in the Philippines; the Hamilton Children’s Choir under the direction of Zimfira Poloz in Canada; and Jitro (Daybreak) under the direction of Jiří Skopal in the Czech Republic.
A passionate music educator of children and youth for more than thirty years, Dr. Hostetter frequently mentors as clinician, collegiate instructor, and honor choir director. She served as repertoire and standards chair for elementary music in the state of Virginia for five years and for eight years provided oversight and direction for a thriving music ministry at Harrisonburg Mennonite Church. From 2007-2014, Hostetter directed choirs and Orff classes at Wilbur S. Pence Middle School in Dayton, Va. During her time there, the choral program grew from 10 participants to more than 120, and her choirs received “superior” ratings at district choral assessments.
Assistant Director, Explorers II Instructor, Preparatory Choir Director
Joy Anderson, assistant director, holds a Bachelor of Music in music education from the University of Richmond, a Master of Music in music education and Level I Orff certification from James Madison University, and Kodály certification from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, including study at the Kodály Institute in Kecskemet, Hungary. Mrs. Anderson has taught in Kodály courses at several universities, including currently at James Madison University, and is a frequent presenter and guest conductor for music education and choral organizations and school systems. Her writing has appeared in state and national music educators’ journals, and she is a contributing author to Winding It Back: Teaching to Individual Differences in Music Classroom and Ensemble Settings published by Oxford University Press. A 34-year veteran music teacher and conductor, Mrs. Anderson also currently teaches and directs K-5 music and high school musicals at Eastern Mennonite School.
Explorers I, Assistant Concert Choir Director, Theory Instructor
Maggie Hagy currently teaches pre-K-5 music at Keister Elementary School. Previously, Mrs. Hagy was a high school choral director in Loudoun County, and a soloist and choral singer with the northern Virginia-based VOCES chamber music ensemble. Mrs. Hagy holds a Bachelor of Music from James Madison University and has completed levels I and II of her Kodaly Certification. In 2018, she was a presenter at the Virginia Music Educator Conference, and in 2017 was the awarded JMU's Young Music Educator Award. Outside of the classroom you can find her singing around town, playing with her dog, or working on staff at Red Wing Roots Music Academy and Festival.
Tracey S. Reed, principal pianist, maintains a wide-ranging portfolio of ensemble work with an emphasis on collaboration with choirs, vocalists, and woodwinds. She devotes particular attention to the coaching of students at the collegiate and graduate level in their preparations for performances and recitals. In addition to SVCC, Ms. Reed enjoys serving as pianist for several other choirs, including the Crozet Chorus and the Intergenerational Choir at Virginia Mennonite Retirement Community. This past year, she was conference collaborator for the Southeast Horn Workshop, the National Association for Teachers of Singing conference, and a festival musician for the Staunton Music Festival. Ms. Reed holds an MM and a BM from James Madison University and her undergraduate work was tailored to focus especially on accompanying and coaching skills.
Concert Choir Pianist, Theory Instructor
Filipino pianist Jeremiah Padilla is a doctoral student at James Madison University studying with Dr. Gabriel Dobner. While at JMU, he served as an adjunct piano instructor at Eastern Mennonite University. Jeremiah holds an MM and a BM from the University of Memphis. As a soloist, Jeremiah has performed piano concertos with the Awit Pilipinas Youth Orchestra, the University of Memphis Orchestra, and the Memphis Repertory Orchestra. An avid collaborative pianist, he frequently enjoys sharing the stage with professors and colleagues at JMU. Other collaborative highlights include playing chamber music with members of IRIS Orchestra, Memphis Symphony Orchestra, and MRO.
Preparatory Choir Pianist
Cory Leckrone is a piano teacher, piano accompanist and organist in Harrisonburg City, and has enjoyed accompanying and teaching piano since she was in high school. Cory has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Piano Accompanying/Performance from James Madison University, under the instruction of Dr. Gabriel Dobner. Mrs. Leckrone co-directed and accompanied the Children's Choir of Muhlenberg Lutheran Church for five years, and was the music director/organist for St. Stephen's UCC of Harrisonburg for 7 years. She has completed the Lutheran Church Music Apprenticeship under director Kathy Lundgren of St. Matthew's Lutheran Church in Woodbridge, VA. Cory truly enjoys accompanying of all sorts including soloists, and church/school choirs, and teaching piano to all ages ranging from kindergarten through adult. She and her husband, Andrew, reside in Park View and have three children, Annelie, Stephen and Greta.
Assistant Treble Choir Director, Theory Instructor
Jeff Hunt is a second year master’s student studying choral conducting at James Madison University. Jeff obtained his undergraduate degree from Northern Arizona University in choral music education where he was a dedicated member of the American Choral Directors Association. After leaving NAU, Jeff taught choir full time at Moon Valley High School in Phoenix for five years. While there, he co-directed several musical theater productions, taught private voice, organized and took part in a numerous district music events, and consistently placed among the top ensembles in local choral festivals. He served as assistant director for the Voices of Christmas Choir and Orchestra during their 2013 season, then as lead director from 2014-2015. Jeff is thrilled to be joining the SVCC family.
Assistant Preparatory Choir Director, Theory Instructor
Karen Reichard is a long-time fan of SVCC and has been to almost every Christmas and spring concert since 1991. Mrs. Reichard is a retired music educator with 36 years experience teaching Preschool through 12th grades in Augusta, Shenandoah, and Harrisonburg City Schools. She taught general music, conducted elementary, middle and high school choirs, and taught guitar. Mrs. Reichard received her Bachelor of Music Education and Master of Music from James Madison University. She received her Orff Levels I-III and Master Class certifications from University of Memphis, with additional Orff classes at Hamline University and Western Carolina University, and received her Kodaly Level I certification from James Madison University. Mrs. Reichard has been adjunct faculty at James Madison University teaching music education classes and supervising student teachers. She plays keyboard with her church worship team and currently resides in Harrisonburg with her husband Bob and two children, Jonathan and Emily.
Rehearsal Assistant and Theory Instructor
Heidi King is currently in the masters of music education program at James Madison University. She completed her undergraduate degree in music with a choral and instrumental pre-k-12 teaching licensure at Eastern Mennonite University. For the last six years, she was the choir director at Stonewall Jackson High School and North Fork Middle School in Shenandoah County. Here she had the opportunity to grow the schools’ choir programs, teach guitar and general music classes, and direct the high school musical. Heidi enjoys singing in the local a cappella group, Good Company, and is active in music ministry at her church, Zion Mennonite. In her free time, Heidi loves to spend time with friends and family and travel to new places with her husband, Justin.
Erin Weldon, a native of the Shenandoah Valley, joined SVCC in 2016 as a volunteer parent assistant for the Preparatory Choir. While volunteering her time with the choir, Erin gained a deeper understanding and appreciation for the professionalism, artistry, and musical instruction provided by SVCC. In 2017 she eagerly accepted the position of Choir Manager. Mrs. Weldon brings over twelve years of managerial experience including working at Atwell Family Chiropractic, Bridgewater Family Dentistry, and ABC staffing. Over the last five years, Erin has successfully run her own cake business while handling the responsibilities of a stay-at-home mother. Outside of work, Erin enjoys spending time with her husband, three children, church family and friends.
Kris Shank Zehr
Explorers Liaison, Music Librarian, Trip Planner
Kris Shank Zehr has worked for SVCC since 2010, when she began assisting instructor Joy Anderson with administrative duties for the Explorer classes. She also manages SVCC’s music library and produces the concert program book each semester. Coordinating trips for SVCC provides a perfect outlet for Kris' admittedly obsessive attention to detail.
A piano performance graduate of EMU’s music program, Kris is in her fourteenth year as a recital accompanist with EMU’s Shenandoah Valley Preparatory Music Program. Kris enjoys singing with her family, with the Shenandoah Valley Bach Festival Chorus, and with JMU’s Valley Collegium Musicum. She is delighted to have two music-loving children, one of whom is currently in SVCC’s Concert Choir, and the other an alum who is interning with SVCC. Other interests include ushering with her family at Blackfriars Playhouse and her current project of organizing a local singing of Thomas Tallis' 40-voice motet, Spem in Alium.
Director of Support Services
Ethan Zook, a volunteer with SVCC, has been working with the choir since 1996. Zook supports all aspects of SVCC’s operations including concerts, rehearsals, trips, development and the SVCC Board. The choir community is deeply grateful to Mr. Zook for his many years of faithful service.