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The GraceNotes, Riderwood’s women’s chorus, meets Tuesdays from 2:00-3:30 pm in the Village Square Music Room.  We perform two seasonal concerts a year in the Riderwood Chapel, one during the December holiday season and one in the spring.  Our next season of rehearsals starts on March 1st.  Women interested in joining should contact Beneva Weintraub at

The Riderwood GraceNotes are pleased to welcome Craig L. Sparks as their new Director. Since 2003, Craig has directed the Bowie Senior Chorale and won, among other awards, the Governor’s Award for Leadership in Aging. He also currently serves as Director of Music for Hunting Ridge Presbyterian Church, a diverse congregation where he pursues his love of classical, gospel, and various other choral music from around the world. A native of Bowie, Maryland, Craig holds a Bachelor of Music from Towson University, summa cum laude, and a Master of Arts from the University of Pittsburgh with a certificate in Ethnomusicology. He has written and arranged numerous choral pieces over the years, and also leads a jazz band, The Craig Sparks Swingtet. At present, he also teaches piano, voice, and theory/composition in his private studio.

Our concerts:

History of the GraceNotes

After Riderwood opened in 2000, resident Mary Ahmadi led a mixed chorus (men & women) for several years. When it collapsed in 2007, some of the women from that chorus approached resident Frank Erk about leading a women’s chorus. Frank named the group the Grace Notes and led it, along with his wife Ruth as accompanist, until 2015, when he retired. Resident Myra Tate became director in the fall of 2015 and reconfigured the group’s name as GraceNotes. Resident Elizabeth White served as accompanist. Myra led the GraceNotes until her health failed after the winter 2016 concert. Resident Ray Roth agreed to serve as interim director for the spring season 2017. In May 2017, Ray agreed to stay on as director on a season-by-season basis. He retired at the end of the spring concert in May 2018. The Executive Committee conducted a search and, not finding a Riderwood resident who could lead the group, hired William Wisnom as director beginning in September 2018. He served until January 2022. In the spring of 2022, Craig Sparks succeeded him and serves as current GraceNotes director.

If you have questions about the GraceNotes, please send email to Beneva Weintraub at