Back Bay Chorale, established in 1973, seeks an innovative Conductor, Collaborator, Leader, Teacher, and Visionary to serve as its Music Director, guiding the organization’s outstanding talent, comprehensive musicianship, and refreshed vision. Back Bay Chorale will audition finalist candidates during our 2023-24 season and welcome its next Music Director no later than June, 2024. In addition to the Music Director, Back Bay Chorale staff also includes a full-time Executive Director, a part-time Community Engagement Coordinator, part-time staff accompanist, and part-time administrative and marketing staff. Annual revenue is approximately $320,000.
Back Bay Chorale (BBC) is a 100-member auditioned chorus that draws experienced singers from the greater Boston area. Since our inception we have performed an annual concert series that includes repertoire ranging from Renaissance to contemporary choral works, often including new, commissioned pieces. Our repertoire includes a cappella works as well as works accompanied by full orchestra and smaller instrumental ensembles.
Back Bay Chorale audiences return each year to hear fresh performances of iconic choral masterworks along with intriguing but less familiar pieces, including repertoire which explores current social experiences.
In addition to its annual concert series, BBC serves the greater Boston area through our Bridges community engagement program. In partnership with the Boston Public Library our Bridges program teaches English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) through choral singing. Our Bridges members also deliver choral performances to Boston area residents who would otherwise be unable to attend a live musical performance, and sing at U.S. naturalization ceremonies.
Music Director Position Description
Conductor. Collaborator. Leader. Teacher. Visionary.
The Music Director provides musical leadership, creative vision, and artistic direction to BBC. Partnering with the Executive Director and the Board of Directors, the Music Director ensures that BBC fulfills its mission, and achieves its goals of musical excellence, education, and robust, diverse community engagement as outlined in BBC’s current five-year Strategic Plan: https://bbcboston.org/about/strategic-plan.
The Music Director attracts, inspires, and retains high caliber choral singers; helps build audiences via an innovative and diverse choral repertoire; builds and nurtures a joyful and respectful musical community (singing members, orchestra, guest artists, collaborators); and enhances the stature of Back Bay Chorale.
The Music Director positions BBC at the cutting edge of choral music performance locally and nationally, performs revered masterworks with freshness and immediacy, and engages with living composers to actively contribute to the future of the choral arts. While anchored by the core repertoire of the Western choral tradition, they program with boldness, imagination, and curiosity.
The Music Director will strive to make the organization welcoming and accessible to musicians, audience members, educational partners, donors, other staff members, and communities of diverse backgrounds.
The Music Director works in close partnership with the Board of Directors and the Executive Director to maintain the financial health of the organization and to expand audience and philanthropic support for BBC.
Candidate Profile / Experience and Qualifications
The ideal candidate will combine a thorough knowledge of choral, instrumental, symphonic, and vocal performance with significant experience conducting and leading singers and instrumentalists in a broad range of repertoire and musical styles. They will be eager to communicate artistic ideas and to make artistic concepts accessible to a variety of audiences.
The successful candidate will have the proven ability to:
- plan a dynamic, creative, and exciting season within board-approved budgets;
- ensure a financially sound artistic planning process;
- rehearse and conduct concerts of the highest quality;
- inspire vocal and instrumental musicians to attain an excellent level of performance;
- assemble, manage, and cultivate artistic staff; identify and coach highly gifted vocal soloists;
- collaborate with other organizations within the diverse Boston arts community;
- pursue the organization’s accessibility and diversity goals in all aspects of the Music Director’s role, including auditions, season programming, and seeking new commissions;
- embrace and formulate programming that can be delivered in digital or non-traditional forums while aiming to reach new audiences;
- build and sustain an enthusiastic audience.
Experience conducting an orchestra at the professional level is required.
A thorough understanding of non-profit organization management is essential.
The ideal candidate will be committed to working strategically with our Executive Director, and in collaboration with our Community Engagement Coordinator to expand the reach, impact, and integration of BBC’s Bridges outreach program. The Chorale's Bridges program is an integral part of our mission that celebrates and shares the unifying power of voice with our community.
The ideal candidate will be flexible, responsive, emotionally intelligent, receptive to new ideas and technologies, and will actively seek and reciprocate collaboration with and feedback from other members of the BBC community. They will work in close partnership with the Executive Director in season planning, developing performance opportunities, expanding audiences, and attracting philanthropic support for BBC throughout New England and beyond. In order for the BBC to perform music of the highest quality, to commission new works, and to deliver a wide range of choral repertoire, they will enthusiastically undertake opportunities to maximize the financial resources of the BBC.
Although Back Bay Chorale Music Director is a part-time position, they will give BBC a high priority among their other conducting and professional commitments. In addition to artistic duties, the Music Director will dedicate significant time to collaborating closely with BBC’s Board and Executive Director in fundraising, and strengthening ties between BBC and the communities it serves.
Advanced degree or equivalent experience in Music and/or Choral Conducting is required.
Annual Compensation: $45-50K, commensurate with experience, plus payment of required Federal and State payroll taxes.
Expressions of interest and applications from all qualified candidates are enthusiastically welcome. As an equal opportunity employer, Back Bay Chorale actively seeks to attract a diverse pool of candidates.
Please email materials no later than December 8, 2022, using the subject format below, to:
Susanne Powers – Executive Director, Back Bay Chorale;
Subject: Last name, First name, Date of application (mm/dd/yy)
Please submit the following items:
- a cover letter describing interest and qualifications
- a written reflection on the candidate’s vision for the future mission of Back Bay Chorale
- a résumé
- links to recent video recordings of their professional performances
- contact information for at least three professional references (résumé and references not to exceed three pages).
Please limit total initial application material to no more than five pages. Please do not include any additional materials at this time. Only applications submitted via email as a PDF attachment will be accepted.
All applications will be treated as strictly confidential; references will not be contacted without the candidate’s prior knowledge and agreement.
The Search Committee will begin to review credentials no later than December 2022, and each application will receive a response. The search will remain open until the position is filled.
Back Bay Chorale is an equal opportunity employer. We do not discriminate in employment, recruitment, advertisements for employment, compensation, termination, upgrading, promotions, and other conditions of employment against any employee or job applicant on the basis of race, color, gender, national origin, age, religion, creed, disability, veteran's status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.