In 1804, Ohio University opens its doors and becomes the first University in the Northwest Territory.
The men's glee club was formed at Ohio University. This was the first all-male glee club in the state of Ohio.
World War II
The original Ohio University Glee Club, which was "created to share profound and far-reaching joy through music" become a casualty of a wholly conflicting ideology. The group was disbanded during the events of WWII.
Several years later, in 1989, Ohio University called upon an influential vocal professor to revive the organization. Ira T. Zook created the foundation for the Singing Men as we now know it. He is the reason we now have a strong network of alumni and support from Ohio University Administrators.
1991, Section 8 began as an eight-member ensemble. The group is now comprised of twelve to thirteen members from the Singing Men of Ohio. For those of you that don't know, Section 8 refers to a military term for discharge due to mental incompetence. Ray Feener, SMO's 1st President, was the founder and first director of this fine singing group, which has also been directed over the years by Jonathan Stuckey, Brad Huffman, Aaron Price, Leo Welsh, and Keith Richards. The Group is now run by all of its members. The group serves the Singing Men by performing where the entirety of the Singing Men of Ohio cannot go. The group has performed for Ohio University Alumni Chapters, and also the National Anthem for hockey and basketball games, as well as many other small parties and engagements. In 2003 they traveled to Penn State for the International Collegiate Choral A Cappella Competition, and held their first A Capella Invitational in April of that year. The Invitational has now become an annual event, held at Templeton-Blackburn Memorial Auditorium. The group also released their first CD, "We May Be Disturbed..." in October 2004 and their second CD, "That's Okay Here" in January of 2012.
After Zook's death in 2000, R.D. Mathey came from Bowling Green State University. He directed the group for 1 year. With RD came SMO staples, "Please Mr. Columbus" and "Johnny Schmoker". He also served as the guest conductor for the alumni concert in 2014.
Upon Mathey's departure, Dr. Raymond Feener took over as director of the group. Feener (who served as the very first President of the Singing Men of Ohio under Ira T. Zook), directed the Singing Men until 2005.
Dr. Stephen Caracciolo took over for feener and directed SMO from 2006-2008. With him came staple arrangements such as "Unitas per Harmonium" and the "Star Spangled Banner".
After working at Ohio University for over 20 years, Dr. Peter Jarjisian takes the helm of the group from 2008-2012. Jarjisian is credited for taking the group to a high achieving level musically. In fact, the graduating class of 2014, made an award in his honor (to accompany the Ira T. Zook award and the Raymond Feener award) for his passion for striving for perfection and music education.
In 2012, Dr. Daniel Hall moved to Ohio from Texas with his family to take over as director of Choral Studies at Ohio University. He continues to serve as the director of the Singing Men.
Today, the Singing Men of Ohio is made up of 60-90 members each year. They perform around Athens throughout the year and, each spring, they tour around the country.
They have given various performances with well-known ensembles across the country and have performed on "The Today Show" twice (in 2008 and 2014).
Section 8 continues to perform around campus and around the country. It has since grown to 17 members and sings predominantly contemporary songs.
Because when you SMO, you SMO for LIFE.
Each Spring, Alumni of the Singing Men travel all across the country to return to Athens, OH for the Annual SMO Alumni Concert (affectionally known as "SMOmcoming"). It is a time for brothers to reconnect, network, and relive their time in the Green Blazer.