Choral Program

The Choral Program at Northern Kentucky University provides the opportunity for students from all disciplines to be involved in a variety of quality choral ensembles. Students are taught by faculty with outstanding credentials and significant experience who believe in the individual growth of the student as well as the quality of the choral experience. NKU choral ensembles are highly regarded at the state and regional level, appearing at major conventions on a regular basis, touring each year and presenting a number of concerts in venues throughout the region and state each semester.

The ensembles frequently present programs with and for elementary and secondary students from the region both on and off campus. All ensembles are open to any student regardless of their major. In fact, non-majors are encouraged to participate. Major convention and international competitions include: American Choral Director's Association Southern Regional Conference (Vocal Jazz), Busan International Choral Competition and Festival - Busan, South Korea (Chamber Choir, Silver Medal), Kentucky Music Educator's In-Service Conference (Chamber Choir - three invited appearances), Elmhurst Jazz Festival - Elmhurst, Illinois (Vocal Jazz), Kentucky Choral Director's Summer Conference (Vocal Jazz), Ohio Music Educator's Conference (Vocal Jazz) and Sing! Cincinnati (Chamber Choir) to name a few.

Chamber Choir

The Chamber Choir, under the direction of Dr. Randy Pennington, is the elite choral ensemble at Northern. The ensemble is open to any student enrolled at the university. The ensemble specializes in the performance of challenging choral repertoire.

Northern Chorale

The Northern Chorale is the largest choral ensemble at NKU. The group is composed of both music majors and non-music majors; members go through an informal group audition for voice part placement. The Chorale performs a variety of literature throughout the year. The Chorale also combines with the other choral ensembles to perform a major choral/orchestral work each year.

Vocal Jazz Ensemble

The Vocal Jazz Ensemble is a small, auditioned ensemble that specialize in the performance of standard and contemporary vocal jazz and solo jazz literature. Under the direction of Dr. Randy Pennington, the ensemble performs frequently in the Cincinnati region and also regularly performs with outstanding jazz performers.


  • Chamber Choir
  • Northern Chorale
  • Women's Ensemble
  • Norse Man Choir
  • Vocal Jazz Ensemble
  • New Music Ensemble
  • Madrigal Singers


Randy Pennington

NKU Alumni Choir 2014 Video

Alumni from the NKU Chamber Choir return for a special concert along with comments from the director, Dr. Randy Pennington, and former students.

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