Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
Mission Statement of the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee

The mission of the VdGSA committee on equity, diversity and inclusion is to cultivate a more diverse community of players of all talents to join us as members of the Society. We extend an invitation to share our mutual interests and enthusiasm through activities and access to resources relating to the viola da gamba, other early bowed string instruments, and music – and  we encourage all members to share resources that will broaden our knowledge and provide access to the historical music of the cultures which represent the membership and the mosaic of our country.

Members of the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee
  • Patricia Ann Neely, Chair

  • Amy Domingues

  • Anne Duranceau

  • Anthony Allen

  • Jamie Gallupe

  • John Moran

  • Kathy Schenley

  • Julie Elhard

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We are pleased to announce that the Viola da Gamba Society of America (VdGSA) is offering the opportunity for teens to learn to play the viola da gamba or “viol” at our annual summer workshop (Conclave). The course is free, will be online, and instruments will be lent to registered participants at no charge through our local chapters of the VdGSA.


The instruments come in three common sizes, treble, tenor, and bass and anyone with a background in music can learn to play the instrument including instrumentalists of all genres and singers. There is a wealth of consort music (ensemble) for a complete consort of viols, music for solo singer and viol consort, as well as a robust collection of solo repertoire for the instrument.


“If one were to judge musical instruments according to their ability to imitate the human voice, and if one were to esteem naturalness as the highest accomplishment, so I believe that one cannot deny the viol the first prize, because it can imitate the human voice in all its modulations, even in its most intimate nuances: that of grief and joy.” - Marin Mersenne, Harmonie Universelle, 1636


We hope you will consider registering for the course to learn more about the instrument and its repertoire.

Viols of the Creek

Congratulations to Viols of the Creek from Woodcreek Middle School and Summer Creek High School! Directed by Pedro Antonio Funes, the ensemble gave a fantastic performance at TMEA!!! Texas Music Educators Association on February 11, 2022.

 “I’m so blessed I get to work with these great kids everyday!” – Pedro Antonio Funes

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Viols of the Creek, Texas    Pedro Antonio Funes-Whittington, Director

The GEMS - Open Gates Concert
C3 – Countertenors, Consort of Viols, and Continuo


Gotham Early Music Scene continues its inaugural season of the “Open Gates Project” with a concert on February 11th, 2022 featuring a roster of phenomenal countertenors of color alongside a consort of viols, and continuo (harpsichord). Works by Byrd, Handel, Monteverdi, Purcell, and the critically acclaimed composer Trevor Weston’s "O Maria" were performed.

The Open Gates Project is a concert series dedicated to creating greater access to stages for musicians of color in Early Music, while also seeking to create greater access to Early Music for underserved communities. Open Gates seeks increased diversity on the stage AND in the audience.

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If you should have further questions about the EDI initiative please feel free to contact Patricia Ann Neely, chair of the committee neelyp@alum.vassar.edu.