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Academics / Departments & Programs / Music / Ensembles

No matter what you're majoring in—whether it's music, biochemistry, or anything else—you'll find plenty of opportunities to sing, play, practice, and perform with other musicians. You'll express your musical skills by performing challenging and intriguing literature. You'll sing and play alongside friends and fellow students who share your passion for music.

Calvin’s music program sponsors nine large ensembles, groups comprised of majors, minors, and non-majors who enjoy making music in community. Our ensembles encompass a wide range of musical styles, experience levels, and time commitments. Ensemble students strengthen their musicianship through thoughtful performances of quality literature, foster life-long friendships, and engage in supportive Christian fellowship.

Department ensembles are open to all Calvin students, with placement auditions typically held at the beginning of each academic year. Students may earn 1 credit for ensemble participation, credits that can also be used to help fulfill the Arts Core requirement.

Explore Ensembles

  • Choral Ensembles

    How to join

    Live auditions are typically held at the beginning of each academic year, but it is possible for students to join at the start of the spring semester.  

    Those interested in joining Campus Choir, Capella, Oratorio Chorus, or Women’s Chorale should contact Dr. Pearl Shangkuan ( to schedule an audition time. The audition will consist of: 

    Please bring two copies of the hymn along to your audition (one for you and one for the professor). Please arrive early so you can complete a written audition form prior to your audition.  

    Those interested in joining Gospel Choir should contact Prof. Nate Glasper ( to schedule a meeting time. Singers should prepare a gospel song, spiritual, or hymn, though a pop or jazz song is also acceptable to demonstrate the quality of your voice. You may sing a cappella or with your own sheet music—accompaniment will be provided. However, if you prefer to sing with an accompaniment track, you may do that also. Instrumentalists (for accompanying praise band) will be given music and/or a recording prior to your audition.

  • Instrumental Ensembles

    How to join

    Live auditions are typically held at the beginning of each academic year, but it is possible for students to join at the start of the spring semester.

    Those interested in joining Jazz Band should contact Prof. Lisa Sung ( for more information and to schedule a meeting time.

    Those interested in joining Orchestra should contact Prof. Josh Zallar ( for more information and to schedule an audition time.

    Woodwind, brass, and percussion students interested in joining a concert band (Symphonic Band or Wind Ensemble) should contact Dr. Tiffany Engle ( for more information and to schedule an audition time. Auditions consist of:

    • Designated scales (from memory)
    • Prepared excerpts (distributed in advance)
    • Sight-reading
    • Woodwind, brass, and percussion students interested in playing in Orchestra should complete a band audition since players are assigned through their participation in Wind Ensemble.
  • Other Ensembles

    Howe to join

    Musicians interested in joining Alumni Choir should express an interest at

    Collaborative Musicianship is an opportunity for students interested in the study and performance of music in smaller configurations (i.e., piano trios, string quartets, jazz combos). Participation is open to all instrumentalists and vocalists who meet the demands of sightreading and independent musicianship. Those interested should contact Prof. Patricia Wunder ( for more information.

    Musicians interested in joining Community Symphony should visit their website at

    Those interested in joining Pep Band should contact Dr. Tiffany Engle ( for more information.

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