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Dr. Christian Morren honored by national organization

Dr. Christian Morren, associate professor of music and director of voice, has been honored with the 2024 Clifton Ware Group-Voice Pedagogy Encouragement Award. The honor was presented by the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS).

The award highlights the concept of “Class Voice” and its potential impact for singers through offerings in community, independent, and academic settings. Recipients are current NATS members committed to advancing this collaborative approach of learning to sing together in group settings, such as formal classes, studio sessions, workshops, and other innovative ways.

Morren plans to use the financial award to purchase group voice class materials for the free classes she teaches for people in the community regardless of their socio-economic status.

“The application for this award said to ‘describe your contribution to group singing,’” Morren says. “My contribution was to show up and show everyone a few things about singing. But really, the greatest lessons that came from these classes was the community it created. Lawton has an amazing community of all ages, and singing is something we can all enjoy together. This award is not about me; it's all about Lawton (and the surrounding areas) and the amazing people who live here. I always want these classes to be free. So many people do not have access to lessons, and they have the same right to learn to sing as others. Hopefully, a student or two from these classes will pass it on when they get older.”

A member of the CU faculty since 2017, she holds a Bachelor of Music degree from CU, a Master of Music with honors from Oklahoma City University and a Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Oklahoma. Previously, she served as chair and associate professor at Mid-America Christian University and directed children and handbells for the First Presbyterian Church in Norman.

Morren has performed as a soloist with the Santa Fe Chorale, Santa Fe Symphony, Opera Unlimited, Oklahoma City Pops Chorale, Oklahoma City Symphony, Utah Festival Opera, Tulsa Opera, and the Wyoming Symphony. She was the featured soloist and musical director for two seasons for the “Festival of Life” music festival in Catania, Italy. A two-time regional Metropolitan Opera auditions winner, Morren placed first in the Naftzger art song competition in Wichita, Kan., where she was recognized for her outstanding singing. Her musical distinction earned her the University of Oklahoma Dame Eva Turner Award for excellence in singing and the prestigious Benton Schmidt scholarship for performance excellence.



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