Music Director & Principal Conductor

Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles
Los Angeles, CA
Type of Position: 
Application Deadline: 
Friday, September 20, 2019

Reporting to the Executive Director, the Music Director & Principal Conductor is responsible for the overall musical excellence of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles (GMCLA), one of the leading LGBT performing arts organizations in the country.  Through their artistry and leadership, the Music Director & Principal Conductor will set and maintain the highest artistic standard that inspires GMCLA members and its audiences.  The Music Director prepares and directs performances of the highest quality that engage, entertain and educate GMCLA’s diverse audiences.  This person must be a passionate advocate for choral music and for the mission of GMCLA to change hearts and minds through the power of music.


The Successful Candidate:

  • Displays a thorough command of, and passion for, choral conducting and teaching techniques, and has extensive knowledge of choral repertoire
  • Has proven success in programming and leading concerts that include a wide range of musical repertoire
  • Has experience directing a non-professional or educational choral ensemble.
  • Demonstrates excellent interpersonal communication skills that align with the unique nature of a volunteer ensemble
  • Has a commitment to GMCLA’s mission of choral music excellence, LGBTQ advocacy, community service, and engagement
  • Demonstrates a commitment to diversity and inclusion
  • Displays a passion for music education and working with young people


Primary Responsibilities:

  • In concert with the Executive Director and GMCLA’s Music Advisory Committee, propose themes, develop programs and select/recommend music to be performed
  • Plan, prepare and conduct the annual concert series
  • Prepare and conduct special engagements and tours
  • In concert with the Executive Director, engage composers, arrangers, and guest artists
  • Prepare and conduct GMCLA educational and community concerts
  • Conduct, or oversee, Aftershock, GMCLA’s a cappella ensemble
  • Audition prospective members and regularly evaluate current members
  • Plan the musical elements for all education programs, and oversee the curriculum of the GMCLA Teaching Artists
  • Serve as a representative for the Chorus to the general community when required



  • Work with the Executive Director to develop production plans for concerts
  • Recruit and supervise music support staff as required
  • Work with Executive Director and Production/Creative team as required to ensure successful concert production
  • Determine needs, set schedule and manage the process of new members, soloists, and instrumentalist selection
  • Ensure GMCLA’s music library is current and properly organized, allowing for timely delivery of music to the members
  • Manage the volunteer music librarians
  • Evaluate members on musical performance and, within the guidelines allowed, provide proper feedback on a timely basis.  Provide the Membership Committee information on the musicianship of individual members and set course of action as needed
  • Schedule, prepare, and oversee rehearsals
  • In consultation with the Executive Director and the member-based Music Advisory Committee, select repertoire for all performances
  • Secure performance rights, licenses, and any required permissions needed for printed and arranged music
  • Help Executive Director secure guest artists as required; choose and oversee arrangers



  • Work with the Executive Director to develop and sustain GMCLA’s mission, vision, and strategic plan
  • In concert with the Executive Director, support the budget process for main series and education programs, keep proper expense tracking and report any variances on a timely basis, working with vendors and artists to manage expenses and adhere to budgetary guidelines
  • Schedule and lead Music Advisory Committee meetings; appoint ad hoc members
  • Work with the Membership Committee, the Music Advisory Committee, and the Section Music Leaders and other member representatives as needed
  • Provide input to Executive Director on marketing and media strategies for GMCLA and its concert series
  • Participate in media and public relations events to promote GMCLA
  • Attend and actively participate in fundraising events, including cultivating donors in support of strategic objectives
  • Support grant applications.  Write narrative content and provide budget support for applications as needed
  • Work closely with the Membership Committee to plan activities that support a professional working environment and standard of conduct for all members.  With Executive Director, provide timely input to the Membership Committee when issues arise, and work with the Membership Committee to update bylaws as needed
  • Perform additional duties as directed and/or approved by the Executive Director


Education and Community


  • Develop short and long-term educational program philosophy and objectives
  • Work with the Executive Director to identify appropriate community and educational engagement and partnerships
  • Supervise Education Coordinator and oversee selection of school partnerships and community partners
  • With Education Coordinator, represent GMCLA at the Arts for Incarcerated Youth partner council and in the educational community as needed
  • Conduct musical programs at schools and serve as GMCLA spokesperson
  • Maintain appropriate communication with other Gay and Lesbian Association of Choruses (GALA Choruses), as well as artistic counterpart in other arts organizations in the Greater Los Angeles area
  • Maintain strong relationships with schools, government entities and officials, and all stakeholders and providers of support for education programs


Qualifications & Experience

  • Advanced Music degree (preferably in choral conducting) from an accredited program, or a Bachelor’s of Music degree with equivalent choral conducting experience
  • Five years experience and demonstrated success in directing volunteer or educational choral ensembles
  • Strong knowledge of choral repertoire, classical music, musical theater, popular music
  • Experience in planning and executing cohesive concert programs
  • Strong leadership, communication (written and verbal) and interpersonal skills
  • Experience with non-profit organizations, working with volunteers and staff
  • Proficient computer skills, including Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel and Finale
  • Demonstrated understanding of the role that culture plays in social change



Work Schedule

The Music Director & Principal Conductor will lead one or two evenings of rehearsal weekly – the Chorus on Mondays and optionally Aftershock TBD, and  must be present and accessible one to two days each week in the GMCLA office.  There will be additional periodic duties on weekends, weekdays, and evenings for community, education, and additional paid performances.  Main season concert weeks require full-time commitment. The Music Director will be allowed other professional activities with the prior approval of the Executive Director.

Application Procedure: 

Application Process

The following items are required for consideration:

  • Letter of interest and resumé/CV
  • Samples of previous programs conducted
  • Propose themes/concepts for three programs: Holiday, Spring, and Summer with 18 specific musical selections for one of the non-holiday programs
  • Two (2) video recordings of performances conducted
  • One (1) video recording in which the candidate conducts a rehearsal
  • Any additional materials to support the application (e.g. sheet music candidate has arranged or composed, essays, curriculum developed, or written program statements)
  • A minimum of three professional references, including contact information (name, telephone number, email address) as well as their relationship to you (i.e., prior employer, etc.)


Interview/Audition Schedule


Interviews will begin in late September.  Final candidates will be invited to conduct GMCLA at a rehearsal on Monday, November 4, 2019 at the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles.  Candidates will be given one selection to prepare and be asked to bring two pieces of their choosing.


Please submit application materials by September 20, 2019 to: 

Music Director Search

Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles

8380 Santa Monica Blvd. Ste 206

West Hollywood, CA 90069

Material may also be shared via DropBox to:


More information about GMCLA can be found at:


Get News