The Ovation Singers have become a part of the musical heritage of the Shenandoah Valley. This small chorale of versatile artists has performed many concerts of broadly diverse programs of patriotic, educational, seasonal, sacred and simply entertaining presentations including annual performances of Handel’s Messiah complete with orchestra.
Singing for festivals, celebrations, and civic or church events, they have become the Valley’s musical ambassadors, with appearances throughout Virginia, from Yorktown to The Homestead.
Ray Hoaster, the Ovation Singers Music Director and arranger, is a 30 year veteran of the Music Production Staff of The United States Air Force Band in Washington, and retired as Chief of Music Production for USAF Bands. After retirement he continued in music production with several music organizations, composers and publishers, including The National Theater, The Kennedy Center and the publishing houses of Elkin Vogel-Theodore Presser and Carl Fischer.
He studied conducting with B. Powell Middleton, Richard Castiglione and Un Dai Choi. He was an arranger and Student Conductor for the James Madison University Chorus, and has been a Music Director for The Oakgrove Theater, The Waynesboro Players and Staunton’s First Presbyterian Church.
In addition to The Ovation Singers, Ray is active with other area groups as Director of Charlottesville’s Sentimental Journey Orchestra, as Assistant Director of The Stonewall Brigade Band of Staunton, and as Production Manager for the CenterStage! concert series.
- Christmas starts for our family with this concert… C.S. (Hospice Fund-Raiser)
- The program was a joyful and inspiring time for all! (Local church)
- Thank you for your community support and participation in ‘The Wearin’ of the Green’ event. You all looked great and sounded wonderful. S.S.
- Many thanks from all of us here at the (Woodrow Wilson) Birthplace…The slice of vaudeville was such fun that I can’t help thinking Wilson himself would have enjoyed it thoroughly. K.L.B.
- Thank you. Your group made our evening a super event! H.H. (Staunton Oktoberfest Celebration)
- It is so satisfying to hear a group sing with the total quality of your group. That, together with your selections, made it exceptionally beautiful. J.S.
- Sunday’s worship service in music was so very inspiring and beautiful. I had to sit on my hands to keep from applauding! G.R.
- I do want to tell you how much I enjoyed the Staunton Ovation Singers. I was most impressed and so very pleased to know that you had gathered together such a treasure of beautiful voices. B.H.G. (Staunton First Presbyterian Church concert)
- The staff and residents of Baldwin Park would like to express our thanks for the wonderful performance you presented us in October. G.B.K.
- Ray and the Ovation Singers…you are absolutely marvelous. Thank you for your time and energy for the Staunton Lions Club. Club Secretary
- Let me say the choir made my evening. They were a blessing. S.B. (Potomac Conference of Seventh Day Adventists)
- The search for excellence is over; we’ve found it when it comes to top entertainment. The Staunton Ovation Singers are, without a doubt, the leading show choir east of the Mississippi! J.S. (Capital District Meeting)