Dr. Jens Korndörfer – Director of Worship and the Arts, Organist
Jens Korndörfer decided to study church music after taking part in a performance of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio. His studies took him to prestigious schools first in his native Germany, then in France, Canada and the USA. After serving as organist in residence at the Concert Hall in Sapporo, Japan, in 2005, he has concertized extensively on three continents (including Westminster Abbey in London, Notre Dame in Paris, Cultural Center in Hong Kong, Suntory Hall in Tokyo, National Cathedral in Washington, and St. Thomas 5th Ave in New York; please see www.jenskorndoerfer.com for more information).
Jens is passionate about sharing his love for all kinds of music through concerts, teaching, and his ministry at FPC. Visitors are always welcome in the organ loft for a demonstration of the beautiful organ and/or to play themselves!
In addition to their love for music, Jens and his wife Julia (who is an organist as well – they met during an organ competition) like traveling, swimming, movies and wine.
Dr. Deanna Joseph & Dr. Daniel Bara – Co-Directors of the Choir and Orchestra
Deanna Joseph is Associate Professor and Director of Choral Activities at the Georgia State University School of Music where she conducts the University Singers and leads the master’s program in choral conducting. In 2015, she was the recipient of the College of Arts and Sciences Outstanding Teacher Award at Georgia State, where she was selected out of a pool of over 800 faculty.
Deanna is an active guest conductor and clinician and has conducted all-state and honor choirs in more than eleven states. She is a frequent conductor of choral-orchestral repertoire, and has led performances of Mendelssohn’s Elijah, Beethoven Mass in C, Mozart’s Requiem, Haydn’s Creation and Lord Nelson Mass, Schubert’s Mass in A-flat and Bruckner’s Mass in D Minor.
Deanna holds conducting degrees from the Eastman School of Music, where she was awarded the Walter Hagen Conducting Prize (detailed biography).
In her free time, Deanna enjoys running, hiking, and is an avid yoga practitioner. She is mother to daughter Elizabeth Grace, born in July 2016.
Daniel Bara is the John D. Boyd UGA Foundation Professor of Choral Music and the Director of Choral Activities and Professor of Music at the Hugh Hodgson School of Music at the University of Georgia where oversees seven university choral ensembles as well as the graduate choral conducting program. His university choirs have performed by juried invitation for state, regional, and national conventions of ACDA, MENC, and IMC. In spring of 2014 The UGA Hodgson Singers won the Grand Prix at the International Choral Competition Ave Verum in Baden, Austria and performed at the ACDA Southern Division Convention in Jacksonville, FL. His former MM and DMA conducting students now hold collegiate conducting appointments at Susquehanna University, New England Conservatory, Miami University of Ohio, University of Idaho, William Jewell College, as well as heads of church and school choral music programs throughout the country.
Dan holds the DMA degree in conducting from the Eastman School of Music, organ and conducting degrees from the University of Michigan, and is a graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy. He is the Repertoire and Standards Chair for Youth and Student Activities for the Southern Division Chapter of ACDA and has served on conference planning committees for the 2012 and 2016 Southern Division conferences. At UGA, Dr. Bara conducts the UGA Hodgson Singers, the University Chorus, and oversees the graduate conducting student recital choir, The Repertory Singers (detailed biography).
Allegra Whitney – Director of the Cherub and Tween Choirs
Allegra Whitney, a graduate of Florida State University’s voice program, has performed as soprano soloist and ensemble member for Walt Disney World, Florida State University Opera, and several local musical theater organizations throughout her school years. Currently, Allegra sings with the Atlanta Opera Chorus, Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus / Chamber Chorus, and serves as Co-Director of Children’s Choirs, Staff Singer and Soloist at First Presbyterian Church. In addition to performing theatrically behind the mic as a VoiceOver Talent for Massive Dynamics, Allegra teaches private voice, piano, and guitar for the School of Fine Arts at First Presbyterian and is certified as a MusikGarten music educator.
Katie Patterson – Director of the Elementary Choir & Director of the School of Fine Arts
An Atlanta-based singer, actor, and teacher, Katie Patterson started her career in the arts with a Bachelors of Music from Georgia State University where she concentrated in vocal performance. Katie has been teaching private voice and piano lessons around Atlanta for 9 years. From there she transitioned into event planning and administration in addition to music education. Ms. Patterson has been with First Presbyterian Church for two years and enjoys working with church members and the Atlanta community to create a thriving and dynamic arts environment. Katie also performs frequently around metro Atlanta in professional theater productions, concerts, and cabarets.