Concordia choir director retires after 34-year tenure

Concordia choir director retirement

Concordia choir director retirement

At a milestone concert at Concordia University Friday night, the choir said goodbye to its longtime director.

Dr. David Mennicke is retiring as Director of Choral Studies after 34 years, with Friday’s Christus Choir Home Concert being his last.

“You know, it’s been 34 years of rich, wonderful memories,” he said. “And I will miss that connection with the students and with my dear colleagues. That’s what’s kept me here for 34 years, is these close relationships that we’ve had.”

During his time at Concordia, Mennicke taught thousands of students and conducted hundreds of concerts.

Mennicke has also made efforts to build relationships in St. Paul’s Rondo neighborhood through music, friendship, and faith. Friday’s concert featured performers and music that represents the Rondo neighborhood.

“We made those relationships, but the music, especially the music of the African American tradition, is uniquely suited to building bridges; to opening up people to emotions, and facing heart issues,” he said. “But doing it in a very authentic, real emotional way that brings people’s feelings and passions to the force we can share them together.”

Mennicke plans to stay active both in music and in the Rondo and Concordia communities, saying he has far too many wonderful friends to go too far away.