Teacher Appreciation: Dr. Grove


Dr. Grove bowing to crowd following a performance

Jae Dancer, Reporter

With his quirky sense of humor, grandfatherly-type wisdom, and patients for teaching 60 teens to sing daily, Dr. Grove, ‘choir teacher, has made choir a favorite class of mine since freshman year.

I remember one day earlier this year, I had just done poorly on an Ap-Government exam. I thought “wow today sucks,” but luckily the following class period was Advanced Trebel Ensemble and at the time we were singing an upbeat song by the Beatles. Through his laughter and energy, Dr. Grove managed to raise my spirits, making choir class an outlet to de-stress and reset for the day.

When Dr. Grove was asked what inspired him the most to teach he said, “My mother was a wonderful musician and as a little boy I learned to sing harmony by standing beside her in church and singing the alto part with her! Other than that, I was pretty self motivated to become the best I could be and my love of choral music drove me to keep learning and improving. That actually still motivates me today!”

Dr. Grove moved to IC and after a series of career changes at Iowa State, joining “The Barbershop Quartet”, a singing group that performed around campus, and getting recruited to join a choir by an ISU conductor Grove then began working towards a doctorate in Choral Conducting. 

“I went to one rehearsal, heard the choir and BOOM, that was it!” Grove said. “I knew in the first 10 minutes that I wanted to be a choir director and coach for high school students.”

Later on, in 1989, Grove began teaching choir at City High and has since been an inspiring figure for many students. Now after 41 years and a total of five schools, Dr. Grove has decided to retire to life with his wife, daughters and 3 grandchildren. 

“I have very mixed emotions about [retirement]. I still have some things to offer high school students and I will really miss the contact and energy of the students but I know it’s the right time for health and family reasons.” Grove said. 

When asked what the best part about teaching is Grove said, “The memories of rehearsals, trips, concerts, etc. Life is all about relationships.”