Bruce W. Becker

2007 F. Melius Christiansen Lifetime Achievement Award
Bruce W. Becker

Bruce W. Becker has served the choral music profession for the past thirty five years, thirty three of them spent in Minnesota public high schools. His position as Director of Choral Music Activities led him to Apple Valley High School 1986-2007, Robbinsdale Armstrong High School 1985-86, Irondale High School 1978-85, New Ulm High School 1975-78, and St. Cloud Apollo High School 1974-1975. He received a Master of Arts Degree in Music Curriculum and Instruction from the University of St. Thomas in 1981, and Bachelor of Arts Degree in Vocal Music Education (Magna Cum Laude) from Augustana College in Sioux Falls, South Dakota in 1974. Post graduate studies were with Hamline University, the University of St. Thomas, and the University of Minnesota.

In addition to his choral positionat Apple Valley, Bruce served as Coordinator for the Performing Arts Department and was Manager of the AVHS Theatre/Performing Arts Center. Under his leadership, the AVHS Music Department was the recipient of several prestigious state and national awards for excellence in music education. In 1991, the department received the "Citation of Program Excellence" from the National Endowment for the Arts; in 1997-98 the "State Model Music School Award" from the Minnesota Music Educators Association (MMEA); and most recently in 1999, 2000, and 2001 receiving the "Grammy Signature School Award" from the National Academy of Arts and Science.

Choirs under Mr. Becker's direction have sung for the American Choral Directors Association of Minnesota State Convention and for the Mid-Winter Clinic of MMEA. In the spring of 2007, the Apple Valley High School Valley Select Chorale appeared in the Choral Arts Finale festival at Orchestra Hall.

Active as a leader in professional and educational choral organizations, he has served as Minnesota State President of the American Choral Directors Association (1989-1991) and Divisional President for the six-state North Central Division (1994-96). In 1998, he served as Program Chair for the ACDA North Central Division Convention in Minneapolis, and as Board Member and Program Chair for the Sixth World Symposium on Choral Music in August of 2002. He served as Festival Coordinator for both the F. Melius Christiansen 125th and 135th Anniversary Festival Concerts held in 1996 and 2006. As a result of the 1996 Anniversary Concert celebration, he was instrumental in establishing the F. Melius Christiansen Endowment Fund that awards scholarships and grants to beginning and mid-career choral educators to pursue additional schooling and training.

Since 1972, Mr. Becker has served as a church musician in numerous midwestern congregations, and currently holds the position Director of Music at the 10,000 member Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, in Burnsville.