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Music

 

Choir Director

Grant Cook

Grant William Cook III is professor of music and director of choral activities at the University of Mount Union.  He conducts the Concert Choir and Cantus Femina, teaches choral conducting and literature, and administers the university’s choral program. 

Choirs under Cook’s direction have performed by invitation at state and regional meetings of the American Choral Directors Association and the National Association for Music Education, toured nationally and internationally, appeared in concert in Washington National Cathedral and performed with the symphony orchestras of Toledo and Canton.
Active as a musicologist, Dr. Cook’s research has been published in The Choral Scholar, Choral Journal and The Beethoven Journal and presented by invitation at meetings of the American Musicological Society and the Ohio Choral Director’s Association. In addition, he has served on the National Research and Publications Committee of the ACDA and the State Board of the OCDA.

Cook holds a bachelor of music degree in vocal pedagogy from Heidelberg College and is a graduate of Kent State University’s Hugh A. Glauser School of Music, where he earned both the Master of Music degree in choral conducting and the Doctor of Philosophy degree in historical musicology/ ethnomusicology.

Organist

Dixie Heck

Dixie Hayes Heck is the organist at Bexley United Methodist Church and the accompanist for the Muskingum University Choral Society, under the direction of Dr. Zebulon Highben.

A native of Newcomerstown, Heck is retired after 31 years of teaching elementary music.  She has previously served as the organist for United Methodist churches in Newcomerstown, Dover, Canton and Columbus.

Heck earned a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance and Music Education from Muskingum College.  She studied organ with the late Dr. Wilbur Schnitker, and piano with the late Dr. Jack L. Peterson.  

In 2008, Heck accompanied the Muskingum University Singers during concerts in Austria.  The choir performed at Mozart’s mother’s church, St. Aegydius Church in St. Gilgen, and at St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna.

Song Leader

Cyd Scarnecchia

Cyd Scarnecchia returns this year as the back-from-break song leader during business sessions. She is the choir director at her home church, New Hope United Methodist Church (Mahoning Valley District) in Niles. 

Scarnecchia serves The United Methodist Church in many ways.  She is the lay leader, the chair of the church board and a member of the shut-in visitation committee at New Hope UMC.  She also serves on the district superintendency committee and is a certified lay servant. 

Her work extends into the community.  She currently serves as secretary/trustee for Niles Churches For Housing, Inc., is the “Queen” of a Red Hat group that she started 15 years ago, and is a past president of Niles Church Women United.

Retired from the American Red Cross Blood Services, Scarnecchia is the owner/operator of Taskworks LLC, offering personal/business concierge services and is employed by Niles City Schools.  She earned degrees in Applied Business in Accounting and in Business Management from Trumbull Business College.