Joe Miller, conductor
Setting the standard for choral excellence for 97 years, the Westminster Choir is composed of students at Westminster Choir College, a division of Rider University’s Westminster College of the Arts. It has been the chorus-in-residence for the prestigious Spoleto Festival USA since 1977, performing both in concert and as the opera chorus.
The ensemble’s 2017-2018 season includes a concert tour of the Midwest; performances and broadcasts at its home in Princeton; its annual residency at the Spoleto Festival USA and the release of a new recording. The choir’s 2016-2017 season included performances of Julia Wolfe’s Pulitzer Prize winning Anthracite Fields at the historic Roebling WireWorks as part of Westminster’s Transforming Space project, as well as concerts at the World Symposium on Choral Music in Barcelona.
The Westminster Choir has been hailed by audiences and critics for its creative programing and ability to deeply engage listeners. Its performance of John Adams’ El Niño, conducted by Joe Miller, at the 2014 Spoleto Festival USA was praised by The New York Times as “… superb. Meticulously prepared, the chorus was remarkable for its precision, unanimity and power.”
The Westminster Choir has made three recordings with Joe Miller. The most recent, The Heart’s Reflection: Music of Daniel Elder, was described by Classics Today as “first rate” and “highly recommended.” Their second recording, Noël, a collection of French Christmas music and sacred works, also features Westminster alumna Jennifer Larmore, the most recorded mezzo-soprano of our era, and organist Ken Cowan. It was the centerpiece of the PRI Radio broadcast Noël – A Christmas from Paris, hosted by Bill McGlaughlin. The choir’s debut recording with Maestro Miller, Flower of Beauty, received four stars from Choir & Organ magazine and earned critical praise from American Record Guide, which described the Westminster Choir as “the gold standard for academic choirs in America.”
Praised by The New York Times for its “full-bodied, incisive singing,” the Westminster Choir also forms the core of the Westminster Symphonic Choir, which has performed and recorded with the leading conductors and orchestras of our time. The Symphonic Choir’s 2017-2018 season includes a performance of Holst’s The Planets with The Philadephia Orchestra conducted by Cristian Măcelaru; the premiere of Machover’s Philadelphia Voices with The Philadelphia Orchestra, conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin; Mozart’s Mass in C Minor with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s conducted by Pablo Heras-Casado; Handel’s Messiah with the New York Philharmonic conducted by Andrew Manze; and Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Princeton Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Rossen Milanov. Joe Miller will also conduct the ensemble performing Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast in Princeton in October.