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Chorus Reuniting for Gagnon at Morgan

Published 09/25/2013 12:00 AM
Updated 09/25/2013 10:11 AM

By Karena Garrity
Harbor News

CLINTON - Kate Dunn Scott, a graduate of The Morgan School, said to thank Mark Zuckerberg (creator of Facebook) for the upcoming Chorus Reunion Concert honoring former Morgan music director William Gagnon. The event, which has now garnered attendees from as far away as Sweden, will be 130 people strong, with Gagnon, who worked at the school for 24 years, at the helm happily conducting his pupils once again.

This free concert will take place on Sunday, Oct. 13 at 2 p.m. at The Morgan School William Gagnon Auditorium.

"All I said on my Facebook page was, 'It would be so cool to be on stage again with Mr. Gagnon,'" said Dunn Scott, who got the ball rolling for this event. "Mr. Gagnon responded to that Facebook message with, 'Plan it and I'll be there.'"

That was last November, so in January a 14-person committee, the Morgan School Music Alumni Association, was formed and it began to launch invitations to former Morgan chorus, band, and musical cast members, via social media.

"The response has been overwhelming," said Scott, who is excited about performing with her high school chorus teacher. "He was such a great teacher and he had such a huge influence on all our lives. I think this is a really great way to say thank you to him and let him know how much we appreciated all he taught us."

Gagnon, who retired from The Morgan School in 1984, now resides in Naples, Florida. He said he is honored and flattered by all this.

"I am thrilled, honored, and excited. It's going to be an incredibly busy weekend and I am looking forward to it," he said. "The event has really blossomed into something beautiful and I can't wait to see all my former students."

He added, "I hope, after 30 years of not conducting, I have the stamina to do it, but I am sure the adrenaline will kick in and I will be fine."

The concert is just one piece of the weekend event, which also involves a rehearsal on Friday, Oct. 11 and another on Saturday, Oct. 12, along with dinner, then the concert on Sunday evening.

"It's really going to be something wonderful," said Scott. "The first half of the performance will include memories of Morgan soloists (I am not one of them). Eight are coming back to do a reprise of their favorite songs, then we will go into the choral sing."

"The music choices have been very carefully chosen and I think they will be enjoyable for everyone-the singers and the audience," explained Gagnon, who is not giving away any titles prior to the show.

In his retirement to the sunshine state, Gagnon has remained a staunch lover of music and sings weekly in his church choir along with his wife. He also sings with the Naples Philharmonic Chorale. He said the trip up north will be his first in about five years and he will be making a mini vacation out of his time here, visiting friends, "the old neighborhood," and some favorite shoreline spots.

"I think this is going to be an amazing event. To us, Mr. Gagnon was Morgan music. So it will be great to be on stage with him again," Scott added.

For more information about the event, visit www.morganmusicalumni@att.net or The Morgan School Music Alumni Association Facebook page.

Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly listed Town Hall as the concert location.

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