“Ben's passion and talent for education are spectacular and rare.” - CASA President Tom Anderson
New York, NY – April 23, 2013 – The Contemporary A Cappella Society (CASA) announced today that, citing new professional opportunities, Benjamin Eldon “Ben” Stevens, Ph.D. has resigned as Director of Education and Program Manager for Festival/Event Education effective immediately. No replacement has been named, but the CASA Board of Directors will begin the search for individuals to assume Ben’s roles in the organization.
“This decision comes at a time of new opportunities for me both in my professional life and in the a cappella world,” said Ben. “It is not a decision I have taken lightly, and as I have taken it I have been grateful for the counsel of fellow Board members and others.”
“Ben has been an incredible force in our community with his commitment to approaching a cappella music with the seriousness of a professor and an incredible desire to inspire and share his perspective with others. I want to say a public thank you to Ben for all he has done,” said Julia Hoffman Director of Awards & Compilations and former CASA President. “You will be missed.”
"Ben has overseen incredible progress for our festival curriculum and development of new strategic educational programs. We can only strive to continue the great work he has put in motion and look forward to his continued advice and support of CASA and our community," added CASA Vice President Greg Rubin.
Stevens started with CASA as treasurer in 2009. From there, he moved on to serve as Director of Education and Program Manager for Festival/Event Education. He was directly responsible for designing, implementing, and overseeing festival curricula involving countless workshops/masterclasses, hundreds of instructors, and thousands of students at some dozen festivals in seven cities across the country, over a period seeing 600% growth in festival numbers.
He was personally responsible for leading dozens of masterclasses with groups including the FSU AcaBelles, Musae, CAL group the Red States (now Restated), 2013 BOSS Collegiate Competition champions Voices in Your Head and 2013 International Championship of Collegiate A cappella winner the NEU Nor’Easters.
In addition, Stevens was personally responsible for designing and delivering a signature CASA event lecture series on music history and criticism, “Essential Listening,” which routinely drew standing-room attendance and became the capstone session of CASA's festival curricula. The CASA Communications team is happy to report that Stevens will continue to deliver “Essential Listening” at CASA events to come.
“He's made an indelible impression not only on those who have attended workshops and masterclasses during his tenure, but also on CASA itself, and we're better for it,” said CASA President Tom Anderson.
CASA was formed in 1992 to create a community between singers and fans of contemporary a cappella. There are thousands of contemporary a cappella groups and countless a cappella fans around the US and world, ranging from high school and college ensembles to professionals and recreational groups and CASA is their organization CASA operates a number of annual educational and performance events throughout the calendar year and across the country. CASA is a clearinghouse of information providing a directory, concert listings, news, album and concert reviews, blogs, podcasts, interviews, videos, MP3 downloads, local contacts, and photos.