Randolph “Casey” Jones

jonesportrait“… to reveal, with conviction, the profound musical thoughts of great composers …”
           ~Randolph “Casey” Jones

It is with great reverence, gratitude, and sorrow that we honor a very special and influential member of the music community, Mr. Randolph “Casey” Jones, founder and former conductor of 32 years, who passed away on Friday, February 15, 2013.

Casey’s role as the founding conductor of The Colorado Choir would be reason enough to celebrate his achievements in choral music. Focusing on this alone, however, would vastly understate the impact of the man we honor now. For 59 years, across 26 states and 17 foreign countries, audiences have enjoyed the gift of choral music, delivered with precision, warmth and ultimate expression.

Mr. Jones’ impact was not limited to the conductor’s podium. For 20 years, Casey’s teachings from the professor’s lectern inspired young men and women to become passionate about music themselves. They’ve gone on to become accomplished music educators, recognized global performers, and impactful conductors at all levels.

Casey was never shy about proclaiming his mission – “To reveal with conviction the profound musical thoughts of great composers.” A reasonable person would expect that a man with such deep convictions would be quite a draconian taskmaster in the rehearsal hall. While there was never any doubt that excellence in musicality was demanded in each rehearsal, Casey’s style of interlacing rehearsals with music history, humorous stories, and a quick wit, made that pursuit of excellence fun and enlightening. His testament to the Christian faith he brought to rehearsals through the music has changed lives, and brought his singers to a more profound understanding of Christianity.

Mr. Jones, on behalf of all the students you’ve inspired, the audiences you’ve enthralled, and the musicians you’ve led, mentored and pushed to heights they didn’t know were possible, we give you our most heartfelt – thank you. You are dearly missed.

Casey Jones KVOD Memorial (mp3 – 51.8 MB)

Randolph F. Jones, better known as Casey, has enjoyed a distinguished career in choral music. He graduated from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota, where he studied with composer/conductor Paul J. Christiansen, later joining the faculty as his assistant. His masters and doctoral studies were at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, where he held an opera assistantship.

Casey has conducted more than 1,200 concerts in the United States and 125 concerts in 18 foreign countries, including 10 appearances in the Soviet Union in the early 1970s, a tour sponsored jointly by Sputnik and the U.S. State Department. In 1995, Casey was named to the Colorado Music Educators Association Hall of Fame by his colleagues. In March 1997, Casey received the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts from The Honorable Roy Romer, Governor of Colorado. Casey attended Augustana Academy and, in 1998, received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Augustana College, Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Casey conducted the internationally-acclaimed Adams State College Choir, Alamosa, Colorado, for 20 years, and, in conjunction, began the Colorado Choir in 1976 to perform with the Denver Symphony Orchestra. Together they performed over 50 concerts. Critical acclaim has followed his choirs in both their domestic and overseas appearances. He is currently an adjunct Professor of Music at the University of Colorado-Denver.

With his Norwegian wit and dedication to perfection, he provides the impetus needed to inspire the choir to the highest standard of performance. Casey is a master of vocal and choral interpretation. Specializing in romantic, dramatic renderings of the classical masterpieces, he crafts the vocal line, stretching and shaping it for the full emotional value. His primary concern in music remains the same as it was over 40 years ago – “to reveal, with conviction, the profound musical thoughts of great composers.”

As Marc Shulgold of the Rocky Mountain News said, “Though he wears his heart on his sleeve, Casey is nonetheless well-versed in the exact science of singing, showing a wide-ranging knowledge of technique and theory that has made him one of this country’s most respected choral conductors.”

Preface, RF Jones: A Biographical Witness

Praise for Randolph F. “Casey” Jones

“the best”
Il Giorno, Milan, ITALY

“what do we do after a concert of this caliber, whom do we invite to equal this kind of singing!”
Het Volk, Brussels, BELGIUM

“a magnificent performance”
TM, Rocky Mountain News, Denver, Colorado USA

“one had to surrender unconditionally”
HK, Dagbladet, Ringsted, DENMARK

“bordering on absolute perfection…a magic-like concentration”
KR, Darmstaedter Tageblatt, Darmstadt, GERMANY

“a man of sheer unlimited musicality”
OR, Heidelberg, GERMANY

“an excellent feel for the finest nuance”
Wkl, Diez Und Ungebung, Nassau, GERMANY

“excellently controlled interpretation at the moment of performance”
JF, Gazette Telegraph, Colorado Springs, USA

“brilliant, magnificent and packed with virtuosity”
(Associated Press), Oslo, NORWAY

“truly electric excitement”
TG (MOZARTEUM), Salzburg Volkszeiturg, AUSTRIA

“astonishing musicality”
PL, Wiener Zeitung, Vienna, AUSTRIA

“a great success”
DM, Novasti Press, U.S.S.R (1973)

“nothing short of phenomenal”
GG, The Denver Post, Denver, USA

“bursting with joy and elan”
La Libre Belgique, Brussels, BELGIUM

“the chorus sings like a precision instrument”
Peter Yates, Arts and Architecture, Los Angeles, California USA

“with ringing variation and interpretations”
Vasteras, SWEDEN

“the applause went on endlessly”