Summer Choral Festival
Westminster Summer Choral Festival
June 23 – July 1, 2017
The Westminster Summer Choral Festival provides an opportunity to live, study, and perform in a professional-level choral ensemble composed of singers and conductors from around the globe. Under the direction of Dr. Joe Miller, as well as several other renowned conductors from universities around the United States, each year the Summer Choral Festival centers around rehearsals and performances of a different masterwork from the western choral repertory. Other features of a typical daily schedule include conducting master classes, scholarly lectures and classes, round-table discussions, and one-on-one time with the conducting faculty.
The 2017 festival will focus on Claudio Monteverdi’s Vespers of 1610. This 90-minute work for soloists, choir, and orchestra represents some of the most ambitious religious music of the early Baroque period, and it foreshadowed masterpieces by later composers, such as Bach and Handel. The Vespers is a staple of the western musical canon and it holds astounding relevance with today's world.
The festival chorus will comprise 60–70 voices, with soloists chosen from among them. The work will be performed with Piffaro, The Renaissance Band in Princeton Theological Seminary's Miller Chapel and the Philadelphia Episcopal Cathedral.
- Joe Miller, Artistic Director/Conductor
- Amanda Quist, Conducting Fellow, Westminster Choir College
- Ryan Brandau, Conducting Fellow, Westminster Choir College, Princeton Pro Musica
- John Russell, Conducting Fellow, Palomar College
- Deanna Joseph, Conducting Fellow, Georgia State University
“Of all my formative experiences as a conductor, I can think of very few that served me as greatly as the Westminster Summer Choral Festival. The conducting master classes are a phenomenal resource, and Joe Miller’s rehearsals truly deepened my understanding of choral pedagogy. I have been going for several years now and each time I return I continue to be inspired and driven as a conductor by this amazing program and its faculty.”
— 2016 participant
“What a great week this was: preparing and performing challenging repertoire among the best of the best: rehearsals, one-on-one conducting coaching, and more, among superb colleagues and Joe Miller’s wonderful leadership.”
— Jerry (WCC ’70)
“This is an experience and a privilege unlike any other. The opportunity to share music and my life with these people is worth more than anything. More than career growth, this has allowed me to grow as a human. Thank you, I will definitely return again.”
— Justin U, 2014
“This is one of the most professionally and musically inspiring and challenging weeks I’ve ever experienced. The instructors are incredibly gifted and generous with their time. The atmosphere is challenging and friendly. Invaluable program.”
— 2014 participant
Step One: Click the “Register Now” button to register electronically through RegOnline.
Application Deadline: Monday, April 17, 2017.
Step Two: Submit a recorded audition via YouTube.
Video (rather than just audio) is encouraged, but not absolutely required.
To submit a video:
First, you must have or create a Gmail or YouTube account.
Second, go to YouTube.com, click on the “upload” button at the top right of the page and follow the instructions. Make certain that the video is set to “unlisted,” not “private” or “public.”
The link to your YouTube video should accompany your online application AND be emailed to [email protected]
The audition recording should include:
• Your name and voice-part announced at the beginning.
• Prepared Solo: An aria from the Baroque or Classical period, which may be taken from opera, oratorio, or other vocal work.
• Prepared Choral Excerpt: Schönberg’s Friede auf Erden: Sing a cappella from rehearsal number 2 (measure 21) to the cadence at the bottom of the page. The excerpt should be sung in German at a tempo of approximately 60 to the quarter note. You may sing either note of the divisi. Download the excerpt here: Schönberg’s Friede auf Erden.
Step Three: Acceptance Decisions
Upon acceptance into the Choral Festival, you must make a 50% tuition payment to reserve your place.
If you have any problems or questions about the audition process, please contact Andrew Cooper, graduate assistant for the Summer Choral Festival at [email protected].
We offer three levels of participation:
Audit only (observing rather than participating, no audition required): $300
Regular fee: $795
With 2 graduate credits: $1,385
Housing is available on campus (see Registration Form) or at area hotels.
Westminster Office of Continuing Education