Dr. Heather Mitchell was appointed Artistic Director of the Hopewell Valley Chorus in 2015. She is the Associate Conductor and Chorus Manager for the Mendelssohn Chorus of Philadelphia, the Assistant Director of Choral Activities at The College of New Jersey, the conductor of the Montclair Community Choir, and previously 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 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. 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.