"Even the sparrow has found a home ..." Psalm 84:3
Dr. Abby Musgrove
Founder and Conductor
Dr. Abby Musgrove is the Founder and Conductor of Spero Chamber Chorale. She is also the Director of Choral Activities at Illinois College, where she teaches various music classes, conducts choirs and ensembles, and oversees the Music Education Program. Prior to conducting the IC Choirs and the Jacksonville Symphony Chorale, Abby taught on the faculty of Aurora University and received degrees from the University of Kansas, University of North Texas, and Millikin University. A native of central Illinois, Abby has taught all ages and levels of music, including choirs and bands, and is an avid church musician. Dr. Musgrove has recently been appointed the new Music Director of the Springfield Choral Society beginning in the Fall of 2019.
In 2018, Dr. Musgrove was featured in the State Journal-Register as “Someone to Know” for her work to establish the Spero Chamber Chorale.
Dr. Garrett Allman is Professor Emeritus of Music at Illinois College and Conductor of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. He enjoys attending concerts and operas near and far, eating Culver’s frozen custard, and dreams of someday flying first class in a 787 Dreamliner jet!
Terri Benz is retired Director of Choral Music at MacMurray College, Director of Music at Centenary UMC, and a member of the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra. She is an avid reader and old movie buff, loves being a passenger on her husband’s Honda Goldwing, and adores all things Harry Potter.
Angela Brink is the choir director and piano teacher at Southeast High School in Springfield, IL. She enjoys attending concerts, hanging out with her daughters, and drinking iced lattes.
Dr. Nichol DelGiorno is Professor of Music at Illinois College in Jacksonville, serves as Organist/Choirmaster for the Cathedral of St. Paul and Temple B'rith Sholom, both in Springfield. While specializing in baroque organ music and traditional Cuban music, she also enjoys politics, power tools, and time with her family.
Diane Dietz is an active lyric soprano throughout the area. She owns/operates her own studio for voice and piano in Springfield, and she enjoys musical theatre life and drama. Some of her favorite performances include singing with the Illinois Symphony Orchestra, the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra, and as the role of Mary Poppins at The Legacy Theatre. She highly recommends taking a 'spoonful of sugar' on a daily basis. "Cheerio!"
Gailyn Draper is a professional vocalist who teaches private voice and is often in demand as a concert soloist. She is employed at Lincoln Land Community College and is an active member of the Springfield Choral Society and Springfield First United Methodist Church, but she credits her family with being the ‘sweetest song of my life.’
Susan Harris is a veteran teacher who survived teaching nine years of elementary vocal music, one year of high school vocal music, and 20 years of kindergarten. She’s a superhero! She has also had the joy of singing in many fine church choirs throughout her life.
Jeremy Hommowun is the BDC/Internet Manager for Shottenkirk Automotive( Mt Pleasant, IA), Executive Director of the Jacksonville Symphony Society, and Administrative Assistant for the Arts at Illinois College. On top of all this, he likes to find time for golf and music!
Becky Kemp serves as the Music Director for First Presbyterian Church in Springfield and teaches private music lessons. She is very proud of her three adult children, and is excited to see what their futures hold.
Bio coming soon!
Steve Larson is a Digital Marketer for Amplified Digital out of St. Louis and lives in Bloomington. Steve loves to play his guitar and sing as a member of the Cherry Hills Church choir in Springfield. He also enjoys running and adores his toy poodle friend, Sugar.
Sue Lutz is Director of Institutional Sales for Steinway Piano and Rodgers Organs, and Director of Music at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Sherman. Sue loves to vacation, drink coffee, watch reality TV; is mother of three, grandmother of three (and one of the way!) and wife of one lucky guy, Todd Lutz.
Adam Miller works at Wells Fargo, is a graduate of Millikin University and sings when and wherever possible. Thank you to Abby for this opportunity and to my friends and family for their support!
Jonathan Miller is a recent graduate of Illinois College. His future plans are unknown to most and have even been kept hidden from Jonathan himself. If you have any information on the whereabouts of Jonathan's future please contact 1-800-aim-less; his future is in your hands.
Richard Ott is a graduate of MacMurray College (class of ‘92), where he has fond memories singing with the college choir and madrigal group. He also sings with the Jacksonville Symphony Chorale and in the choir at First Presbyterian Church of Jacksonville, where he attends with his wife and two children.
Sean Rose is organist at Central Christian Church in Jacksonville. He enjoys all things musical. When not making music, he can be found in his kitchen cooking.
Gregory Runyard works at IDOT in Springfield. He enjoys spending time with his wife and their two children, performing in musicals, and watching the Chicago Cubs.
After Jacob received his Bachelor Degree in Music Education from VanderCook College of Music in Chicago with a focus on voice, his experiences in music have been extensive, from stage to classroom to sanctuary. He is currently choir director at Jacksonville Middle and High School, and loves inspiring young minds through song.
Christine Smith has had multiple music teaching jobs in the Jacksonville area since she graduated from MacMurray College in 1992. She is currently Director of Performing Arts at MacMurray and Director of Music at First Presbyterian Church.
Stephanie Soltermann teaches K-5 music in Jacksonville school district and is choir director at First Presbyterian Church. She also teaches private piano and stays active as a performer and accompanist in community theater.
Bio coming soon!
Bethany Spear is the Director of Spiritual Formation at West Side Christian Church in Springfield. Most of the time you can find her spending time with her family (including her husband & fellow Spero musician, Josh, and their 3 kids). She loves traveling, hearing peoples’ stories, and believes in the power of a good nap.
Josh Spear is Choral Director for Rochester Jr. and Sr. High Schools where he directs 5 choirs, teaches music theory, freshman transitions, and audio technology courses. He loves his wife and three children, mystery novels, board games, the Cubs, vanilla cafe americanos, and serving at West Side Christian Church in Springfield.
Dr. Clayton Spencer is Professor of Chemistry at Illinois College in Jacksonville. When he is not inflicting Chemistry on others or blowing things up, he enjoys spending time with family and all things nerdy -- from Star Wars & Dr. Who to Dungeons & Dragons and video gaming with his son.
Rachel Ventress is a music teacher in the Ball-Chatham school district. She loves reading, playing the piano, and spending time with her family.
Linda Younkin is the music director at Christ the King church and teaches private piano and voice. She and her husband, Dr. Casey Younkin have four grown children, and are excited about being first time grandparents in January!
Eric Hendrickson is the Director of Choirs at Williamsville High School. He recently threw batting practice to his 8 year old in a homerun derby contest and watched a dance recital and 6 baseball games in a 48 hour period.
Kari Jones is the pre-need specialist at Staab Funeral Home in Springfield. She delights in spending time with family and friends, stress-free days, eating the glorious meals husband Steve cooks for her, and devouring ice cream of all flavors in extreme quantities.
Devin Kemp holds her BM in Vocal Performance from Millikin University and her MM in Vocal Performance from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She is so excited to be traveling to Germany, this summer, to perform with the Berlin Opera Academy. Hopefully she can learn some vocal techniques in between all the sight-seeing she plans to do!