Norene Ferris moved to State College after teaching vocal music for thirty years at Bolivar-Richburg Central School in New York State. As Vocal Music Director, she taught junior high general music classes, theater courses, music theory, and directed the junior and senior high choirs, ensembles, and select girls' choruses. She also directed the school musicals and variety shows. In 1996 and 2000 she was selected the "Outstanding Educator of the Year" in her district. Norene is a frequent guest conductor for All-County and Area All-State Choruses in New York, and is a certified vocal adjudicator and trainer. She has served as Chorus Assistant Chair, Chorus Chairperson and Voice Chairperson for the New York State School Music Association, and Women's Repertoire and Standards Chairperson for the American Choral Directors' Association in New York. She recently finished her term as President of the NY chapter of ACDA.
As a soprano soloist, Norene has sung with the Buffalo Philharmonic Chamber Orchestra, and has performed solo work under the direction of Eph Ely, Donald Neuen, Peter Bagley, Andre Thomas. She performed in La Traviata with the Michigan Opera Theater in 1995 on a sabbatical. Her musical theater roles are numerous.
Ms. Ferris is a graduate of SUNY Fredonia where she majored in voice, and was awarded the "Hillman Opera Theater Outstanding Performer of the Year" award her senior year. Further graduate study included Geneseo, St. Bonaventure and Fredonia.
Norene served as the Coordinator for the Center for the Study of Music Teaching and Learning and the Partnership for Music Teacher Excellence in the Music Education Department at Penn State University. She was also a member of the State College Choral Society, and the Director of the Madrigal Singers. She retired in June 2011.