Dr. Heather Mitchell was appointed Artistic Director of the Hopewell Valley Chorus in 2015. She is an alto for the Manhattan Choral Ensemble, the conductor of the Montclair Community Choir, and most recently served as Conductor-in-Residence at Manhattan Concert Productions. As a choral singer, she has performed with many professional groups all over the country including the Manhattan Chorale, Coro, Tucson Chamber Artists, and a chamber octet for the Tucson Symphony Orchestra.
Specializing in unknown repertoire, Heather founded the professional vocal ensemble FIVE LINES to perform such works and bring attention to pieces by major composers that have been overlooked. In the spirit of FIVE LINES, she made her Carnegie Hall debut, conducting the vastly unfamiliar Schumann Requiem, Op. 148. Singers of the Hopewell Valley Chorus shared the stage with her as members of that choir.
Heather was the author of “A Reconsideration of the Performance of the Chorales in J.S. Bach’s Passio secundum Johannem, BWV 245,” a featured article in the Choral Journal, published by the American Choral Directors Association. It focuses on the proper performance practice of Bach’s chorales, even beyond those in the St. John Passion.
Her teaching spans a range from children’s choirs to collegiate. Most notably, she was a director with the Tucson Arizona Boys Chorus, the head of the choral department at Anoka Ramsey Community College, Cambridge Campus, MN, and a music professor at Rollins College, Florida.
In 2006, Heather earned the Emerging Conductor Award from the Minnesota Chorale and has received Outstanding Conductor and Outstanding Achievement in Choral Music awards. She has been sought out as a clinician and judge for many choral festivals including the Arizona Music Educators Association, All American Music Festival, and OrlandoFest.
She holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in choral and orchestral conducting from the University of Arizona and a Master of Music degree in choral conducting from Saint Cloud State University, in Minnesota. She served as Repertory and Standards chair for the Arizona State American Choral Directors Association and as president of the Saint Cloud State Chapter for the Minnesota State American Choral Directors Association.