Indiana State University Newsroom

Sycamore Singers headed to China

May 7, 2015

Plans are being finalized for the Sycamore Singers, an Indiana State University choral group, to travel to China May 23-June 3.

Fourteen students -- 13 undergraduates and one graduate -- had just wrapped up their Spring Choral Showcase before starting to rehearse some new music in preparation for the trip.

The group will spend five days in Beijing and perform three or four concerts of vocal jazz and improvisation at the Minzu University of China, the Beijing Conservatory of Music and the Beijing Normal University.

"We want to work with their students," said Scott Buchanan, associate professor and director of choral activities at Indiana State. "It's a great opportunity."

They'll conduct side-by-side clinics, and the Indiana State students are learning a few Chinese songs. Cultural excursions include stops at Tiananmen Square, the Olympic Village and the Forbidden Village.

After a trip by bullet train to Shenyang, the Sycamore Singers will work with the students at the Shenyang Conservatory of Music. They'll additionally perform a concert for the U.S. Consulate in Shenyang, and talks about the conservatory broadcasting the performance are in the works.

"We'll do some cultural things and a lot of singing," Buchanan said.

Indiana State's School of Music has an academic exchange agreement with the Shenyang Conservatory of Music. In fact, Li Ladin, the wife of music department director at the Shenyang Conservatory, is a visiting instructor at Indiana State.

The Sycamore Singers are perhaps best know for their presentation of the Yuletide Madrigal Feaste each December. The dinner and show is a re-creation of the Renaissance feasts held in the great baronial halls throughout England during the 12 days of Christmas.

The trip to China is partially sponsored by the Center for Global Engagement, the Center for Student Research and Creativity and the School of Music.


Photos: -- The Indiana State University Sycamore Singers pose for a group portrait. -- The Indiana State University Sycamore Singers pose for a group portrait.

Contact: Scott Buchanan, associate professor and director of choral activities, Indiana State University School of Music, 812-237-2763 or

Writer: Libby Roerig, media relations assistant director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-3790 or