Connie Ruth (Penhale) Lindblom will receive the 2014 UP Choral Leadership Award from the Marquette Choral Society. The award is given annually and will be presented at the society's spring concerts April 26-27.
Lindblom has taught vocal music in the Negaunee Public Schools for the past 28 years, not only educating students but instilling in them the joy of music. A current student says, “Mrs. Lindblom has not only been my teacher and my mentor but she has become my friend. She connects with all her students and I don't believe I'd be the person I am today without having all the different and outstanding opportunities she has been able to provide me with.”
Some of the opportunities that she has provided to her students include the National Anthem Chorus, which she started at the middle school. The focal point of this program was an opportunity to sing the National Anthem at a Detroit Tigers game as well as for home sporting events with the Negaunee Miners. Over her career, she has given hundreds of students this “once-in-a-lifetime” experience.
Another opportunity that Lindblom provides for high school students is participation in the Chorale, a select group of chorus members who work on more difficult music and perform more frequently throughout the year for local organizations. In 2011, she organized the first school musical open to all students in the newly remodeled auditorium at the high school. In the past four years they have performed Guys and Dolls, Oklahoma!, The Sound of Music and this year How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.
In addition to her work with the Negaunee Public Schools, Lindblom supports choral music and the arts in the community. She serves as the choir director at Immanuel Lutheran Church in Negaunee, working with church members ranging from four years old to the elders. She also has been a participant, supporter and advocate of the Peninsula Arts Appreciation Council (PAAC) since her high school days. She currently sits on the PAAC board of directors as president.
Through her dedication to and her love of choral music, Lindblom has influenced the lives of countless singers, both young and old, and continues to be a strong musical presence in her community.
The Marquette Choral Society concerts, featuring Mozart's Coronation Mass and Fauré's Requiem, are at the Reynolds Recital Hall on the campus of Northern Michigan University. They will be held at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 26, and 3 p.m. Sunday, April 27. Tickets are $10 and may be purchased from NMU EZ Ticket outlets or at the door. For more information, call the NMU music department at 227-2563 or visit www.nmu.edu/choralsociety.