Choral Director

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Choral Director

The application deadline for this opportunity has passed.

Youth Singers of Calgary is seeking a choral director for our SENIOR HI division.

Who Are We?

Youth Singers (YSC) is one of Calgary’s premier performing arts education organizations for youth and adults. We have over 500 members, ranging in age from 3.5 to senior citizens, and offer music and dance training in 15 different divisions.

Various YSC divisions and choirs rehearse or hold classes five days a week and on many weekends, and we produce two shows at the Jubilee Auditorium each year, in addition to over 75 performances throughout the community each season.

The foundation of YSC’s programs and values is excellence in choral singing, and this is supplemented by choreography, performance skills, and theatre arts to create a show-choir-like experience for our singers. The repertoire is divided between concert (traditional stand-and-sing repertoire that introduces our singers to the breadth and depth of the choral tradition) and choreo (choreographed songs that incorporate excellent choral technique into choreographed numbers with showmanship and dance training).

The SENIOR HI division, serving singers in grades 10-12, is a key part of our core program (grade 3-university), and is a fundamental part of the Youth Singers experience. Singers in this division are exploring SATB repertoire, moving into more challenging choral repertoire and choreography, and have numerous opportunities to collaborate with singers from other divisions and to develop their skills in theatre arts, dance, music, leadership, and more. Most of our SENIOR HI members receive high school credit through the Alberta Education Work Experience program, facilitated through both the Calgary Board of Education and the Calgary Catholic School District.

Find out more about us at and

The Position

This is a part-time, contract-based position for a choral director to direct the SENIOR HI Division, beginning in September 2020

SENIOR HI rehearses on Wednesday nights from 6:00 to 9:15pm from September through the first week of June, and the division performs several times each season, including at two mainstage shows at the Jubilee auditorium (next season, they are on December 6, 2020, and May 15, 2021), community performances during the Christmas season and in the spring, and at Choralfest. SENIOR HI also participates in five workshop weekends throughout the year.

Choral directors are the leaders of each division, just as the choral program is the core of Youth Singers. The director, accompanist, and choreographers make up the artistic team of each division. Each of our four core divisions has a distinct team so that as singers move through the organization, they have an opportunity to learn from a wide variety of instructors.

Each individual is a part of two complementary teams:

Your divisional team, which works together in rehearsal each week. As a team, you agree on classroom management techniques and standards, communicate regarding individual singers and their experience in your division, consistently manage discipline issues, support each other’s teaching and timelines, understand the global picture of your singers’ repertoire and learning process, etc.

Your departmental team (i.e. all choral directors across the organization). As a team, you provide mentorship and resources for each other, support the goals of the organization in providing growth and trajectory in the overall choral program, support each other’s teaching and goals when you interact with other divisions, etc. The choral director for SENIOR HI works closely with the choreography staff, artistic director and creative team, and production staff. Youth Singers provides excellent administrative support and a creative, collaborative environment that works slightly differently than many choral organizations. Repertoire selection is a team effort: the choral director is directly responsible for a portion of the repertoire selection, while other elements are chosen by the creative team to suit the needs of the larger shows and themes for the year.

SENIOR HI tours internationally every other year. While each tour team is selected independently and not all artistic staff are on each tour, the division’s team works simultaneously toward both the core YSC season and the tour shows and competitions, preparing the singers at a high level for both.

Skills & Qualifications:

  • Experience with and passion for music education for teenagers. We strive for excellence and recognize that process is paramount. Our product exudes quality, but not at the expense of our singers’ learning, confidence, love of music, excitement for performing, and growth as musicians and as individuals.
  • A bachelor’s degree or higher in a discipline such as choral conducting, music education, music performance, or a related field is required.
  • Minimum of five years experience directing a high school-aged choir.
  • Experience in repertoire selection, including a cross-section of time periods, styles, languages, composers, and themes, and comprehensive knowledge of choral trends and development of the art form.
  • Excellent classroom and rehearsal management skills.
  • Excellent singer to model proper vocal technique and a demonstrated ability to develop excellent choral tone within the group.
  • Team-oriented and open to interesting ways in which choral music can be interpreted through many art forms.
  • Connected to the greater Calgary choral community—your connections to performance opportunities, choirs to partner with, and your own continued professional development rely on connections with our city and its artists.
  • Excellent organizational skills to manage learning, scheduling, and lesson plans throughout the year. The Youth Singers administrative team provides excellent support, including:
    • Overseeing registration and payments from singers.
    • Music library management, including building music binders and preparing sheet music, tracks, demos, and rehearsal support materials.
    • Supporting your communication to parents.
    • Production support for performances and events, including technical and volunteer support.
  • Up-to-date Police Check and Vulnerable Sector Screening or willingness to acquire prior to employment being confirmed is required.
  • First Aid/CPR certification is an asset.

To apply please send a resume, cover letter, and a link to a video of yourself conducting a recent performance or rehearsal to Shirley Penner at

Please send videos via Dropbox, YouTube, Google Drive, or another file-sharing platform (a performance video of your choir that doesn’t focus exclusively on you is fine).

Applications will remain open until March 20, 2020, at 5:00pm or until a suitable candidate is found.

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