About the Directors
Steven C. Warner
Steven Warner received his B.A. in Religious Studies from St. Michael's College in Winooski Park, Vermont, where he then served as Director of Liturgy for two years. He moved to the University of Notre Dame and earned a Master's degree in theology and liturgy in 1980.
Mr. Warner joined the Office of Campus Ministry staff at Notre Dame in 1979. Since that time he has continued to build up programs and enhance the integrity of sacred music at the University. With his assistance, the tradition of worship on campus continues to grow, influenced by the presence of the folk choir and the liturgical planning aids published through his office. A new hymnal supplement, planning and celebration of campus-wide liturgical events, and coordination of musical resources for more than three dozen residence communities all take shape under the guidance of his office.
The Notre Dame Folk Choir was founded by Steve in 1980. Then a group of eight vocalists with no musical library, the group has now grown to more than sixty singers, instrumentalists, an associate director, and several student assistants. The choir began a regular schedule of national and international tours in 1988, made its seventh tour to the Republic of Ireland in 2003, and celebrated its 25-year silver anniversary on the Notre Dame campus the first weekend of May in 2005.
The repertoire of the choir is published exclusively through World Library Publications outside Chicago, Illinois. "Songs of the Notre Dame Folk Choir" first appeared as an octavo series in 1995 and now comprises nearly a hundred pieces. Collaborators to the series include Rev. Chrysogonous Waddell, O.S.C.O., former choirmaster of the Abbey of Gethsemani. Some of the compositions have become parochial standards in just a few years—"Set Your Hearts on the Higher Gifts," "All Will Be Well," "The Lord's Prayer," and "Rosa Mystica" are several expamples.
Karen Schneider-Kirner is an Assistant Organist/Choir Director for the Basilica of the Sacred Heart at the University of Notre Dame. As Associate Director of the Notre Dame Folk Choir, she has collaborated with Steve in both composing and arranging several octavos for that ensemble, published through World Library Publications. She has also published works for handbells. At Notre Dame she directs the Handbell Choir and Celebration Choir and serves on the Alliance for Catholic Education faculty.
An Indiana native, Ms. Schneider-Kirner is also a concert organist and has played solo recitals in cathedrals across the U.S. and in Europe. From Yale University she holds a Masters of Music degree and a Masters in Art and Religion, through the Yale Institute of Sacred Music. Her Bachelor of Music degree is from Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. She has pursued further studies at the Hochschule fur Musik in Vienna, Austria.
Karen and her husband Scott have three children—six-year-old twin daughters Claire Marie and Emma Rose along with their three-year-old son Joseph.