Music Director Opening
Serving music to the region since 1984
As we near the 40th anniversary of the Putnam Chorale, we find ourselves conducting a search for a Music Director for only the second time since our beginning. Interested candidates, please see the position description below. You may download the description and requirements here: Candidate Information
Position Opening: Putnam Chorale Music Director
The Putnam Chorale, founded in 1984, is the sole community chorus in Putnam County, NY. We seek an enthusiastic and dedicated music director for an equally enthusiastic SATB chorus of 50 singers to guide us into our next chapter of development and experience. Although a non-auditioned 501c(3) by charter, the Chorale is a mix of focused and dedicated singers eager to provide the region with compelling concert experiences.
The Music Director reports directly to the volunteer Board of Directors. Responsibilities include creating and conducting two annual performances, often with orchestral accompaniment, and providing overall choral guidance to the organization. We seek candidates who are creative and passionate about choral singing, who can apply their own skills and musical objectives while also collaborating with the Chorale for direction.
The position is part time and starts September 1, 2023. Salary is up to $13,000 per year. Duties during the summer are generally light and open to discussion. Rehearsal and performance spaces vary according to needs and opportunities but are generally within 30 miles of Carmel, NY. The hiring process includes a personal interview (ideally in person) and one or more guest conducting sessions to be scheduled during the months of March through July, either with the full chorus or an ensemble. The composition and objectives of the guest conducting will be provided during the interview.
Our website is PutnamChorale.org. Applicants should contact us at Search@PutnamChorale.org with a statement of interest and resume. Application deadline is May 1, 2023.
Music Director Responsibilities
- Providing overall choral direction and guidance to the choristers and the organization.
- Preparing, rehearsing, and conducting annual performances, historically in early December and late April, at varied venues.
- Preparing, rehearsing, and conducting a small number of “community outreach” performances such as holiday ensembles, community events, etc.
- Conducting weekly rehearsals on Monday evenings and very occasional Saturdays during the rehearsal season.
- Warming up singers prior to rehearsals and performances or assigning responsibility for same.
- Managing the hiring, integration, rehearsing, and conducting of an orchestra or other accompaniment as the chosen works require.
- Selecting appropriate performance works based on the current skills of the Chorale and the performance occasion.
- Conducting voice placement screenings where appropriate to identify singers’ range and quality to make suitable placements.
- Hiring professional soloists and instrumentalists as necessary for performed works, and auditioning where necessary to ensure a sampling of available talent within the applicable geographical range.
- Providing vocal training and direction during rehearsals to assist choristers in reaching their potential as individual and group singers.
- Advising the Chorale, and leading where appropriate, in the creation and direction of smaller genre-specific ensembles.
- Attending occasional board meetings and participating in some fundraising activities.
Music Director Requirements
We realize that the range of applicants may extend from experienced performers to relative newcomers. Applicants lacking demonstrated strengths in some of the stated requirements, may nonetheless have the desire and ability to be successful with planning and growth and are welcome to apply.
- A collegiate degree in voice, chorale conducting, vocal/music education, or related field.
- Experience in the chorale setting as both a performer and chorale conductor. Experience as a soloist and voice trainer (desirable).
- Some keyboard skills for warmup and light accompaniment.
- Sound musical knowledge and familiarity with a variety of music genres.
- An interest in various styles and periods of choral music.
- Strong leadership and listening skills.
- Effective communication skills, both oral and written.
- Patience and nurturing style with amateur singers.
- Sufficient communication and contact with area directors and professional colleagues to insure fresh insights with an eye to opportunities for growth and collaboration.
- An interest in promoting the Putnam Chorale brand and image to the community and seeking opportunities to use the Chorale as an agent for community engagement and betterment.