Music director

New Mexico Symphonic Chorus
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Type of Position: 
Application Deadline: 
Tuesday, February 28, 2023


Position Overview. The Music Director’s primary responsibility is the maintenance and advancement of the creative aspects of the Chorus and hired orchestras and is the primary conductor and face of the organization. This position reports to the Board of Directors.

The position requires a highly engaged Music Director who plans, develops, and executes the artistic repertoire of the Chorus while taking into consideration the goals of the Chorus in regard to our community, our audiences and our musicians. Reporting to the Board of Directors, the Director also serves as a voting member of the Board.

On a day-to-day basis, the Music Director must plan, manage, and execute all rehearsals, main concerts, special concerts/events, and any other musical undertakings of the organization. The Music Director works in close cooperation with the Executive Director, board, and any other staff and volunteers to build, nurture and sustain the organization to achieve its mission and grow its presence in the community.

About the organization. The New Mexico Symphonic Chorus is a nationally known group that boasts 40-years of music making in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The volunteer members of the chorus are a diverse group. Some of the singers work in music-related fields as professional musicians, some hold degrees in music, and some maintain private teaching studios. All of the singers have studied voice, are currently studying voice, or play an instrument. Some travel from as far as Santa Fe and Socorro to sing in the chorus. We perform with members of the New Mexico Philharmonic and other hired professional musicians and have been featured in the Vail music series with our outgoing conductor, Roger Melone, who is looking forward to a relaxing retirement. Typically we perform four concerts a year. The chorus possesses its own extensive music library.

Salary: $35,000

Time commitment: Averages 20-30 hours per week year round.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Attract, recruit, and audition potential chorus members.

  • Conduct auditions for potential new members and, as needed, for continuing members.

  • Conduct all performances and rehearsals.

  • Engage soloists and instrumentalists.

  • Conduct pre-performance rehearsal(s) with instrumentalists and soloists and conduct all performances.

  • Organize rehearsals efficiently.

  • Be available to assist in marketing and fundraising.

  • Plan, develop and execute the artistic program for the annual concert year, which runs from July to June and includes a minimum of three concerts.

  • Establish repertoire and engage accompanists, and guest soloists.

  • Provide the Board each November with a proposed musical program for the following concert year including cost estimates for each concert

  • In the event of a needed absence from a scheduled rehearsal or concert performance, the Music Director will secure a competent substitute director for approval by the Board.

Budgeting responsibilities:

  • Present a preliminary artistic program budget proposal to the Board for the upcoming concert season no later than Nov. 15 of the current season. The proposal should include cost estimates for each concert related to:

    • music acquisition

    • engagement of vocal soloists, instrumentalists, and potential performance sites

    • accompanists

    • other pertinent costs

  • After consultation with the Board, present a final budget proposal for the following concert season. With support of the treasurer, monitor current year budget and expenses and make changes, as needed, within the budget provided. May exceed the total budget provided only with express permission of the Board.

Development/Fundraising Responsibilities:

  • Working collaboratively with the Board of Directors, Executive Director, staff, and volunteers as appropriate.

  • Available to assist the Executive Director with development, fundraising, and publicity efforts of the Chorus.

  • In consultation with the Board, is available for interviews and other media opportunities.

  • In consultation with the Board, is available for meetings and events related to promotion and fundraising.

Administrative and Other Responsibilities:

  • Attend all board meetings.

  • Recruit and audition new members for the chorus.

  • Provide development opportunities to strengthen the musical skills and abilities of the members of the Chorus.

  • Provide needed information for  preparation of materials for the concert program.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

  • Proven musical arts experience.

  • Three years’ experience in conducting college/university, community and/or religious vocal ensembles.

  • Ability to communicate principles of musicianship, vocal techniques, and diction.

  • Ability to motivate and inspire singers’ attention to detail and ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously.

  • Experience with choral-orchestral repertoire.

  • Orchestral conducting experience.

  • Strong communication skills both speaking and writing.

Education and Experience Requirements:

BA with 3-5 years of experience or Masters or Doctorate in Choral Conducting with 1- 3 years of experience. Experience/knowledge of non-profit performing arts organizations is strongly preferred.

Compensation and Benefits: 

$35,000 annual salary

Application Procedure: 


Hiring Process:

Applications including a cover letter and resumé will be accepted up to and including 28 February 2023 and should be addressed to Ms. Julie Smith at

As part of the interview process, selected candidates will be invited to plan and conduct an audition concert in the 2023-2024 season. The music will be rehearsed by an interim director before the candidate arrives. The interim director will not be a candidate for the Music Director position. The candidate will need to be in New Mexico for final rehearsals preceding their concert.  $1000 will be paid for expenses and accommodation will be offered free of charge. A $2000 fee will be paid upon completion of the concert.

Anticipated start date 1 July 2024.

Further information about the chorus is available on the website

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