CATHY CRISPINO – Interim Director of Choral Ensembles

Story by Katie Thurbon

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Coming out of retirement to be an interim director of choral ensembles seemed something like destiny to Cathy Crispino.

“When I was in the first grade, the teacher would make us a crown to wear out of construction paper for our birthday and she would ask us what our favorite color was to make the construction paper crown, and mine was orange,” Crispino said. “So I think it’s time for some orange and I love that.”

Cathy Crispino (Courtesy Photo)

Crispino retired from directing choirs at Lawrence High School in the spring of 2012 but knew she’d still be involved in music somehow.

“I’ve had a year of retirement and now I’m going to have a new adventure, and I’m really excited about that,” Crispino said.

With an impressive resume of teaching public school for 32 years and being a professional choral musician, Crispino is looking to impact a new set of people.

“I was always sad to see my seniors leave because senior year in high school a lot happens vocally; they mature in such beautiful ways,” Crispino said. “I always felt like I did all this work to help them get to where they just blossomed and then I had to say goodbye.”

Crispino will also be working with the community choir in addition to the strictly student choirs but is fulfilling only part of the duties of Matthew Potterton, who was the director of choral activities before departing Baker last year.

Crispino said she will continue to build on Potterton’s work and hopes to prepare students to perform at the professional level.

“I hope to enhance the students’ music reading skills,” said Crispino, “and create beauty with others in the community.”

Sophomore MacKenzie Sammons said she was nervous about getting a new director, but after meeting Crispino she is ready to see how her directing style differs from Potterton’s.

“I’m really excited to see how this year goes,” Sammons said. “And of course the choir is always looking for more support.”

Crispino said the music department has big plans for the students this year, including a fall concert for all Baker choirs and a trip to Ireland over spring break.

“I have really enjoyed working on preparation for the choir this summer,” said Crispino. “I can’t wait to get started.