Our Pax Christi Chorale website now presents a link for an “ artistic director search.”
I should probably explain that.
Performing Parry’s Judith at Koerner Hall this May is going to be absolutely thrilling, and our tour to Britain next year will be a dream come true, and in the following year we will have equally wonderful offerings. But even so, I will be retiring from Pax Christi Chorale in 2017.
In the spring of that year I will turn 55. I will have been artistic director of Pax Christi Chorale for 20 years. In that time I’ve seen every aspect of the choir grow into a thriving and healthy arts organization which has taken artistic risks, expanded its audience, commissioned new works and revived lost masterpieces, made three recordings and a video, collaborated with young singers and emerging professionals, and remarkably, has never been in debt.
I wanted to give my choir lots of notice to process this transition clearly and methodically, and give them lots of time to find their next conductor.
I regret that I will not be conducting Bach’s St. Matthew Passion, or Britten’s War Requiem or Janacek’s Glagolitic Mass, or Tippett’s Child of our Time or Albert Ham’s Solitudes of the Passion, or a thousand other choral masterworks that have been on my list for many years with Pax Christi Chorale.
But the truth is, if I were to continue as artistic director of Pax Christi Chorale, all of my time and energies will go into these projects, and I would never have the time, focus or energy to compose my own choral works, my own symphony, or my own oratorio, or opera or any of the works I feel compelled to write.
It’s composition that I wish to pursue for the next leg of my musical journey.
I have learned some life lessons along the way. I realize that earthly existence is short, and I have only a limited time here to work, to learn, to experience and to give back. So I have made a difficult choice. But Pax and I have had a wonderful two-decade relationship, and I am content that this is the right move.
There are so many dedicated young choral conductors who are disciplined and passionate, and who will be thrilled to conduct such a wonderful choir, with such a smart, dedicated and enlightened organization, I am excited to see who will step up to this amazing musical challenge.
And now that the position has been posted, I hope you will help us spread the word, and find the person who can lead Pax Christi Chorale for the next 20 years!
Here’s the link: