Job Description: Artistic Director for CHARIS, the St. Louis Women’s Chorus

Supervised by: CHARIS Board of Directors

Purpose of Position: To develop and carry out the artistic programming, collaborations, and concerts that enhance the mission of the organization

Chorus Mission: CHARIS is a diverse group of women united in our mission to perform music that celebrates and encourages women and the LGBTQ community

The position of Artistic Director (AD) for CHARIS (the Chorus) will be a part-time paid position (beginning June 1, 2017) responsible for the overall artistic preparation and performance of the Chorus. The Chorus rehearses on Tuesday evenings. It is a non-auditioned group comprised of 30 to 50 singing members with varying degrees of musical expertise.

The Chorus, now in its 24th year, sings both a cappella and accompanied music of various genres (e.g., pop, classical, jazz, blues, ethnic, folk, and traditional choral music). The Chorus takes its performance quality and music very seriously, although the music itself may range from whimsical to political to solemn. Responsibilities and qualifications are described below.


  • Responsible for the preparation and presentation of at least two (2) major concerts per season (Fall and Spring), including providing timely information about rehearsals, dress rehearsals, and performances to the Chorus.
  • Responsible for other, less formal concert performances throughout the year, including annual PRIDE performances, and benefits/public relations performances as agreed upon between the AD and the Board of Directors (Board), as long as preparation time is available.
  • Responsible for preparing the Chorus for, and leading the Chorus at the GALA Festival, a gathering of member choruses that is held every four years in North America (the next one is July, 2020 in Minneapolis, MN).
  • Responsible for coordinating arrangements for all sound equipment and/or musical instrumentation necessary for each concert and other performances.
  • Responsible for selection, supervision and coordination of accompanists and any other guest artists and musicians required for each performance.
  • Responsible for representing the Chorus in various public relations/advertising situations such as radio/TV interviews, newspaper articles, etc.
  • Responsible for coordinating with the Board for approval of major expenditures not expressly provided for in the CHARIS annual budget.


Responsible for conducting all musical pieces sung by the chorus at all scheduled rehearsals, except in cases of illness or emergency.

Responsible for conducting sectional rehearsals, as needed, or informing section leaders of the musical pieces to be rehearsed prior to sectionals.

Responsible for meeting with each newcomer to discuss prior singing experience; AD will then assign to voice part.

Music Selection

  • Responsible for sitting as a member and attending all meetings of the Chorus’ Artistic Committee and for attending the annual planning meeting of the full Chorus.
  • Responsible for reviewing and selecting music that reflects the mission of the Chorus and the theme of individual performances, in consultation with the Artistic Committee.
  • Responsible for selecting concert themes, using information provided during the Chorus’ annual planning meeting and in consultation with the Artistic Committee.
  • Responsible for outlining performance details to meet timelines for grant writing.
  • Responsible for selecting music in a timely fashion to provide adequate preparation for the Chorus, allowing for securing music rights, necessary musical arrangements, score preparation and any other logistical tasks.
  • Responsible for completion and distribution of sectional rehearsal tracks for each concert in a timely manner.
  • Responsible for providing interpreter for the deaf with all music for the concert at the same time the Chorus receives it.


  • The Artistic Director and the Chorus’ Board of Directors will agree via contract, which will be re-negotiated annually. The position will be paid a salary to be negotiated by the applicant and the Board of Directors.

Required Experience, Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Interest in and commitment to embracing the mission of the Chorus.
  • Ability to provide strong leadership skills and to balance work within a team setting.
  • Flexibility in working with a diverse group of singers, committee members, and volunteers.
  • Strong Communication skills, both written and verbal.

Preferred Experience, Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities

  • Bachelor’s or other advanced degree in music (ideally with an emphasis in choral conducting) or equivalent conducting experience (5 years or more).
  • Experience conducting or working with a community-based chorus and with singers of various musical skills and experience.

To apply, send a cover letter, resume, and (optionally) letter(s) of recommendation to

Review of applications will begin immediately and continue until the position is filled. Please submit applications by February 15, 2017 for full consideration.