Miami Choral Academy Director Shawn Crouch to leave organization to pursue doctoral studies in composition

June 26, 2013

Mike Burgess
Communications Manager, Seraphic Fire
Direct Line (305) 692-0268

Seraphic Fire Announces Search for Second Conductor of its Inner-City Education Program

MIAMI, FLShawn Crouch, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Director of Seraphic Fire’s Miami Choral Academy (“MCA”), has announced his plans to return to academia and composition full-time, and will leave the organization to pursue Doctoral studies in Music Composition at the University of Miami on a full scholarship in the fall. Mr. Crouch, MCA’s founding director, has led the award-winning free afterschool music program for the past four years to great success. Seraphic Fire is announcing a search to find the next conductor of the Miami Choral Academy. Mr. Crouch will continue to lead the program through the end of July.

The Miami Choral Academy, initially funded by a matching grant from the first year of the Knight Arts Challenge, is a tuition-free after school choral music education program serving elementary and middle school students in economically disadvantaged areas of Miami-Dade County. Under Mr. Crouch’s direction, the program has served over 600 students with a robust, high-level music education program. Through test scores and parent surveys, MCA has proven that students participating in the Academy have become leaders, both academically and socially.

“We’ve introduced these kids to environments and places that they never knew existed, and MCA has made a big mark on the American music education scene,” says Mr. Crouch. “Around the country, people know what we are doing here, and they are interested in how to replicate MCA’s success in their own communities.”

“Shawn has done wonders with the Miami Choral Academy,” says Seraphic Fire Artistic Director Patrick Dupré Quigley. “Through his unyielding dedication to the program, the Miami Choral Academy has established itself as a model for how children’s lives are made better through performing music.”

Mr. Crouch, a trained composer with degrees from Yale University and the New England Conservatory, has maintained an active compositional life while leading MCA. Called a “gifted young composer” by Gramophone Magazine, Mr. Crouch’s works have been performed by Chanticleer, Eighth Blackbird, the Phoenix Chorale, American Modern Ensemble, Del Sol String Quartet, the Prism Quartet, and Seraphic Fire. He has received awards from ASCAP, the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Meet the Composer, and the Percussive Arts Society.

In response to Mr. Crouch’s return to academia, Seraphic Fire is announcing a search to find a conductor to lead the Miami Choral Academy’s music education initiatives. Application information and a job description is available at

For press inquiries or high-resolution photographs, please contact Mike Burgess, Seraphic Fire’s Communications Manager, at, or by calling (305) 285-9060.


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