Choral Director, Community Chorus at UVMC
Annie Arrington is a passionate music educator and mother of three. She has held a variety of teaching, conducting, and leadership positions including high school and church choir, private voice and piano, and small business administration. She is also a choral composer, songwriter, and avid researcher of the singing voice. Annie’s work, both professionally and in her personal life, is bolstered by a strong love for people and her desire to instill joy and inspire confidence in those she serves.
Annie is a life-long beneficiary of music education. As a child, her parents required her to take piano lessons and sing in the school choirs, although she preferred to be jumping on the trampoline and doing gymnastics. But when a serious illness during her teenage years halted all athletic activity, Annie turned to singing, songwriting, and composing while her body healed. Her school choir teacher, Sally Wooten, loaned Annie her boombox with piles of CDs from every musical era. After many months of lying in bed and listening to her teacher’s CDs, she was hooked! The following year she composed her first 4-part harmonization of an original song, as part of her all-time favorite high school class (besides choir!)—Music Theory. Embracing the life of a musician and music educator (although she continues to do gymnastics to this day!), Annie graduated with honors from Boise State University where she studied music education with Peggy Jo Wilhelm, Jim Jirak, Linda Schmidt, and Shirley Van Paepghem, as well as music composition and counterpoint with Wallis Bratt and Giselle Wyers. During her studies, she also became acquainted with world-renowned choral conductor and music educator, Eph Ehly, of the Conservatory of Music at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. They have maintained a close friendship over the years, and his saying: “We don’t teach music to people; we teach people through music” is the foundation of all her work in music classrooms, rehearsal spaces, and private studios. Her life’s motto is: “People matter.”
Annie and her husband of almost 20 years have lived in many places throughout the United States—including Idaho, Mississippi, Washington, Georgia, and New Hampshire—and have enjoyed getting to know and appreciate the variety of cultures and subcultures in each area. She will be serving as the Interim Choral Director for the Community Chorus at UVMC for the 2022-2023 season while her husband fulfills a contract position at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center. However, they have been remarkably impressed with the Upper Valley and are seriously considering making this their long-term home.
Annie welcomes any and all who have a desire to sing to come and take part. She has long believed the Zimbabwean proverb: “If you can talk, you can sing,” and her research has confirmed that certainty, as well as how to teach singing to anyone who desires to use their “built-in musical instrument” in any capacity.