conducting master class June 2017

Conducting Master Class

Period orchestra & chamber chorus
with Dr. Jan Harrington


June 18 – 24, 2017

Applications now open

Master Class Overview

This 7-day professional conducting master class is open by application to conductors and auditors alike. The master class offers a group of select conductors the opportunity to develop their gestures, learn useful rehearsal techniques, study and perform examples of Baroque repertoire, undertake performance-practice tutorials, and lead rehearsals with the Festival chamber chorus and orchestra.

Conductors and auditors will participate in daily master-class sessions with Dr. Jan Harrington. Each conductor will lead the Festival chorus twice daily and direct rehearsals with the chamber orchestra. The master class will culminate in a public performance, led by the participant conductors.

Enrollment is limited to 8 conductors. There is no limit for auditors. Auditors attend all sessions, including the master classes and seminars, but will not conduct the Festival chorus or orchestra.

Master class benefits for conductors —

  • Enhance practical conducting skills during daily master classes.
  • Daily seminars on a variety of topics related to choral & orchestral conducting.
  • Conduct the Festival chamber chorus twice daily.
  • Conduct the Festival chorus and orchestra in a public performance at the end of the master class.
  • Video and audio recording of your performance.
  • Have fun making great music, make new friends.


Baroque works for Chorus and Instruments

George Frideric Handel (1685-1759)

Chandos Anthem no. 11a, “Let God Arise,” HWV 256a

Antonio Vivaldi (1678-1741)

Kyrie, RV 587

Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643)

Beatus Vir, SV 268

Jan Dismas Zelenka (1679-1745)

Miserere, ZWV 57

Professor Jan Harrington, Clinician & Conductor

Dr. Jan HarringtonJan Harrington was Chancellor’s Professor and Chair of the Choral Conducting Department at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music where he conducted and taught for 33 years until his retirement in 2007. During his entire tenure there, he conducted the Indiana University Singers, a select virtuoso choir of 32 singers, as well as various orchestral concerts, operas and oratorios on campus. For 10 years he was conductor of the Indiana University Contemporary Vocal Ensemble, a group devoted to the performance of avant-garde vocal music with whom he performed over 120 new pieces from the avant-garde as well as classic 20th century works, including many world premieres. He served as Chair of the Choral Department from 1998 to his retirement, taught graduate conducting, and continues to act as mentor to the graduate choral conducting students. Also an active conductor of opera and orchestral performances, his operatic performances have spanned the repertoire from Monteverdi’s Orfeo to John Adams’ Nixon in China. His orchestral and choral performances have been consistently noted for their inventive programming, communicative excitement and technical brilliance.

Dr. Harrington was a graduate of Southern Methodist University, studying under the late Lloyd Pfautsch. He received his Masters and Doctoral degrees from Indiana University where his mentors were Julius Herford and Fiora Contino. Prior to joining the faculty at Indiana, he was on the faculty of the State University of New York at Fredonia where he was conductor of the 250 member Festival Chorus, which was the principal chorus for the Buffalo Philharmonic under Lukas Foss, and was Director of Choral Activities at the University of Oklahoma. He has conducted at the Aspen Music Festival, the summer festival Music at Gray Towers in Milford, PA, was on the faculty of the Dartmouth Conducting Institute held in the summers at Dartmouth College, conducted for the Stockton (CA) and Roanoke Opera companies, recorded for Spectrum Records, and was on the editorial team for the 2nd edition of Choral Conducting: A Symposium, published by Prentice-Hall. His conducting students hold choral and orchestral positions throughout the United States and in 12 foreign countries.

Fees & Deadlines


  • Master Class Fee of $1,290 due within 5 days of acceptance

Conducting Auditors

  • Master Class Fee of $575 due within 5 days of acceptance

Non-refundable application Fee of $40 due with online application.

Limited scholarships are available for qualified applicants. Ask for details.



In the event you cancel your participation in the masterclass:

50% refund on fees paid until April 1, 2017

No refund thereafter.

Application Procedure

You will be notified of our decision via email after submitting your application. In order to complete our online application form, you must submit the following supporting materials along with payment of the $40 non-refundable application fee by credit card:

  1. ALL APPLICANTS: A current resume with at least two references — please upload in doc, docx, pdf, rtf or txt format.
  2. ALL APPLICANTS: An audio recording of the applicant singing (a cappella on a neutral vowel) the following exercises, after getting a starting pitch — please upload in aif, mp3 or wav format.
    • A ‘d harmonic minor’ scale, one octave ascending and descending on a neutral vowel of your choice
    • Arpeggios, one octave ascending and descending, first legato and then staccato. For altos and bass voices start on A and ascending chromatically in keys to Eb; for sopranos and tenors, start on Db and ascending chromatically in keys to G.
    • An augmented triad (in a comfortable register) ascending and descending, in three successive ascending chromatic keys without reference to a pitch after you begin the first triad.
  3. CONDUCTOR APPLICANTS ONLY: A short video (5 minutes or less) of the applicant conducting a rehearsal (preferred) or a performance — please provide url of YouTube, Vimeo or other site where you’ve posted this video.

Seminar Topics & SCHEDULE

  • Bones and Brains
    • Ideas for Technical Self-Analysis
  • Chironomic Gesture
  • Applicable Gestures and Techniques from Plainchant
  • Score Analysis
  • Stylistic Approaches to the Baroque
      • Singing: Text, Articulation, Tone
      • String Technique
      • The Continuo Group
      • Solo and Obbligato Coaching


daily schedule:

2017-Master-Class-ScheduleDownload this 2017 Master Class Schedule


Out-of-town participants can arrange for housing through the Festival. The Festival provides dormitory-style rooms for $50 per night, payable in advance through the Festival. For those who may wish more amenities, local hotel options can be provided upon request.