Mr. Joel Hill
Greetings from VJHS and SSMS Choirs!!! We are off and running with an exciting 2020-2021 school year. Our singers will learn a wide variety of choral repertoire from both standard accompanied and unaccompanied literature choices from various genres, including many popular genres such as contemporary a cappella, gospel, soul, etc. As we are becoming more geared toward online technology, the choirs also will have digital assignments in solo and group literature. Singers also will work daily to improve their musicianship knowledge and skills. General Music students will explore various musical styles, composers and artists throughout music history, musical instruments, and basic music notation, and other various aspects of music and its impact on and relationship to our contemporary society.
Upcoming 2020-2021 Events: (*"FLEXIBILITY" is the key word for this school year!)
* Sept 23-24 - SICC Honor Choir - University of Mississippi (* tentatively postponed to January TBA)
* Nov TBA - Veterans Day Presentations - (* currently tentative)
* Dec TBA - Holiday Choir Concert (* currently tentative; will be virtual)
* Dec TBA - Christmas Presentation - SSMS (* currently tentative)
* Feb TBA - MSACDA Solo & Ensemble Competition (* will be virtual)
* Feb TBA - MCSD Choral Festival - Ridgeland HS (* currently tentative)
* Feb TBA - Black History Month Presentations (* currently tentative)
* Feb TBA - MCSD Multicultural Fair - Ridgeland HS (* currently tentative)
* Feb TBA - High School State Beta Club Talent Competition (* currently tentative)
* Mar 8-10 - MHSAA High School Choral State Performance Assessment (Central Site) - Pearl HS (* currently tentative; possibly virtual)
* Mar or Apr TBA - MHSAA/MMEA Choral Art Festival - Ridgeland HS (* currently tentative)
* Mar 15-19 - SPRING BREAK - NO CLASSES
* April/May TBA - Spring Choir Concert - (* currently tentative)
Parents, please do not hesitate to e-mail me should you have any questions or concerns this year.
Students, keep working! "There's always time for fun when the work is getting done!"
About the Teacher
Joel Hill currently is serving in his 19th year of music education and is serving in his 5th year as Director of Choirs and General Music Teacher at Velma Jackson High School and Shirley D. Simmons Middle School in the Madison County School District. Prior to coming to MCSD, Mr. Hill served from 2007-2016 as Director of Choral & Vocal Music at Holmes Community College in Goodman, MS, where he directed the Holmes Concert Chorale and The Coachmen, a contemporary a cappella ensemble, and taught private voice, music theory aural skills training, and other music education courses. In addition, he served as Academic Advisor for Music/Music Education Majors and as Associate Department Chair of Fine Arts. In 2016, The Coachmen, were the first-ever community college contemporary a cappella group, and the first group from the state of Mississippi selected to perform on the Main Stage at the National A Cappella Convention in Memphis, TN, sponsored by the (AEA) A Cappella Education Association.
Prior to Holmes CC, Mr. Hill taught choral music, showchoir, and musical theatre for five years at Forest HS and Kosciusko HS, while also performing in community theatre and teaching private voice. A native of Grenada, MS, he served as Minister of Music at Central Baptist Church of Grenada from 1996-2018, and as Interim Minister of Music at Friendship Baptist Church of Grenada from 1995-1996.
In 2004, Mr. Hill received special recognition as the recipient of the Colleen Kirk Memorial Award presented by the Southern Division of the American Choral Directors Association. This award is given annually to "an outstanding young choral music educator who is chosen to represent the Southern Division’s 11-state region."
Mr. Hill holds the Associate of Arts degree in Vocal Music Education from Holmes Community College in Goodman, MS; the Bachelor of Music degree in Vocal Music Education from the University of Mississippi in Oxford; and the Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from Mississippi College in Clinton.
Active in professional organizations, Mr. Hill currently serves on the State Boards for (MSACDA) the Mississippi Chapter of the American Choral Directors Association and (MMEA) Mississippi Music Educators Association. In Summer 2020, Mr. Hill took the role of President of the MMEA/MHSAA High School Choral Division. He recently served as MHSAA District VI High School Choral Chair in 2017-2019. He also currently serves as State Conference Registrar for the annual joint MMEA-ACDA State Conference. Mr. Hill served as President (2012-2014) and Secretary (2014-2016) of the Choral Directors Association for the (MACJC) MS Association of Community & Junior Colleges. Mr. Hill also is an active member of (AEA) A Cappella Education Association, (NAfME) National Association for Music Education, and (MPE) MS Professional Educators, and is a past member of (NATS), the National Association for Teachers of Singing. He is a frequent choral adjudicator and has judged preliminary rounds for American Idol and The Colgate Country Showdown.
Mr. Hill currently resides in Madison, with his wife and their three children, and is a member of Victory Baptist Church in Madison, MS.