Shekela Wanyama is a DMA student in conducting at the University of Minnesota. Prior to beginning her doctoral studies, Wanyama taught middle and high school choir for 10 years in Minneapolis and Seattle. She is Associate Conductor of VocalPoint, a Saint Paul-based choir committed to social change through music. Wanyama has sung with Border CrosSing, the Minnesota Chorale, The Singers, Seattle Pro Musica, and the Philharmonischer Chor Berlin. Her primary teachers are Kathy Saltzman Romey, Matthew Mehaffey, and Elizabeth Schauer. She holds a Masters degree in choral conducting from Temple University and Bachelor of Music Education degree from the University of Minnesota.
Joshua Pedde is the artistic director of the Indianapolis Children’s Choir (ICC), one of the largest and most respected children’s choir programs in the world, which includes the Anderson Area Children’s Choir and the Columbus Indiana Children’s Choir. He conducts ICC’s advanced treble choirs. During his 20 years with the ICC, Mr. Pedde has been instrumental in growing the ICC’s Innovations program which provides free music education workshops to public and private schools throughout central Indiana. In addition, he has pioneered ICC’s Neighborhood Choir Academy within Central Indiana which provides a six to eight-week musical experience for students to explore the world of choral music and culminates in a performance with the ICC, and the creation of ICC Connects, which allows singers from around the world to work and sing with the ICC choral program in central Indiana.
Mr. Pedde is a frequent conductor and clinician throughout the United States including the LCMS Worship Institute Children’s Choir, the WELS National Convention Festival and Children’s Choirs, Indiana Circle the State with Song festivals, the American Hymn Society, the National Conference of Pastoral Musicians, the National Disciples of Christ Conference, American Choral Directors Association all-state choirs in Kentucky, Georgia, Mississippi, and New Mexico, and the Indiana Music Education Association Middle School and Elementary honor choirs. Mr. Pedde frequently is a consultant to churches on Liturgical Worship and Children’s Choir. In 2003 he premiered the work The Wraggle Taggle Gypsies by Irish composer Mary McAuliffe at the National Concert Hall in Dublin. He is the founder and artistic director of the Coastal Song Choir Festival.
In addition to conducting at Carnegie Hall, Kennedy Center, and Lincoln Center, Mr. Pedde was the backstage conductor for the premiere of the children’s opera, The Trio of Minuet. He recently prepared ICC’s most advanced treble choir for a performance at Shift: A Festival of American Orchestras at the Kennedy Center. He has conducted at numerous sporting events including the FINA World Swimming Championships, Indianapolis Fever, NCAA Women’s Basketball Finals, the RCA Tennis Championships, the 2008 U.S.A. Olympic Diving Qualifications, the 2012 World Choir Games, and Super Bowl XLVI. He has conducted choirs in performances at the Vatican and Canterbury Cathedral, in Austria, Canada, England, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Netherlands, and Spain. In September 2018, Mr. Pedde’s treble choir was a featured performer at the 50th National American Orff-Schulwerk Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Mr. Pedde is a member of the NAfME, ACDA, IMEA, and ICDA. He also served as a solo and ensemble and organizational judge for ISSMA and as a clinician for IMEA’s ensembles. Mr. Pedde serves as chair for the Consortium of Indiana Children’s Choirs.
Mr. Pedde serves at Cornerstone Lutheran Church as director of traditional worship for their three sites in Carmel, Fishers, and Indianapolis. He is the music director of the Carmel Community Choir and Orchestra. He is a member of the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians and the AGO. He has received training and certification in Orff-Schulwerk, Kodály, and First Steps methods of teaching. Mr. Pedde was an elementary music teacher in the Zionsville Public School system for five years before joining the ICC as a full-time conductor, and from 2001-2005 Mr. Pedde was the Artistic Director of the Kokomo Youth Chorale.
Mr. Pedde earned his Bachelor of Music degree in vocal music education and a master’s degree in choral conducting from Butler University, where he was recognized for his outstanding work in elementary music