Executive Director

GENOVESE VANDERHOOF & ASSOCIATES

A Cultural Management Consulting Firm

JOB OPPORTUNITY

THE BACH CHOIR OF BETHLEHEM AND BACH FESTIVAL ORCHESTRA

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR

The Bach Choir of Bethlehem invites applications and referrals for the position of Executive Director.

 “This is Bach at its finest.  The conductor, orchestra, soloists, and chorus are eminently capable of the nuances of the rich harmonic texts…spirited and vivacious…it is not likely to get any better than this on this side of the Atlantic.”  (The American Organist)

The Position of Executive Director:

Founded in 1898, The Bach Choir of Bethlehem is the oldest Bach Choir in the United States.  Under the artistic leadership of Greg Funfgeld, The Choir today consists of 85 volunteer singers, a 30-piece Bach Festival Orchestra made up of professionals and Baroque specialists from 11 states, and The Bel Canto Youth Chorus.  Bel Canto is a group of 50 singers in grades 6 through 12, directed by founder Dr. Joy Hirokawa, and merged with The Bach Choir in 2018.  The Choir attracts thousands of national and international visitors to its annual Bethlehem Bach Festival in May. 

The Choir is supported by an administrative staff of seven led by the Executive Director.  Its offices are located in the historic district of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. The Board of Managers of The Choir is comprised of 25 individuals from four states. The annual budget is approximately $1.5 million.   

Reporting to the Board of Managers, the Executive Director is charged with ensuring the success of The Choir by supervising and overseeing all administrative operations of the organization, including fund-raising, marketing, budget preparation, tour booking, financial management, concert production, and human resources management.  The Executive Director acts as a spokesperson and ambassador for The Choir, expanding our audience, creating and maintaining community partnerships, and striving for greater diversity, equity, and inclusion on the part of the organization.    

The Executive Director must be able to establish and maintain effective working relationships with the Artistic Directors, the Board of Managers, Choir staff, Choir and orchestra members, the media, artists, other arts groups, sponsors, funders, educational institutions, volunteers, audiences and other stakeholders.  

The current Executive Director, Bridget George, retires in June of 2021 after  twenty-four seasons with The Choir.  She has successfully led the administration of the Choir through the implementation of five strategic plans, and managing national and international tours, capital campaigns and recording projects, among many other accomplishments. Under her aegis, The Choir has professionalized its operations, growing from a staff of two to today’s complement of seven.        

 The Bach Choir of Bethlehem

The Mission of The Bach Choir of Bethlehem and its Bach Festival Orchestra is to perform the works of Johann Sebastian Bach and to promote and encourage appreciation of the aesthetic value of Bach’s music, while striving for the highest standards of musical excellence. This mission is achieved by engaging its audience—locally, nationally, and internationally—through education and performance, including works by composers who influenced Bach and were influenced by him, and through the programs of The Bel Canto Youth Chorus.  Together, The Choir and Bel Canto cultivate a lifelong passion for the choral arts. 

The current Artistic Director and Conductor, Greg Funfgeld plans to retire in 2021 after thirty-eight seasons. The search for his successor has reached a mature stage. 

Under the current leadership The Choir’s activities have expanded to a year-round season of 40 concerts and educational programs with an audience of more than 22,000; recordings for the Dorian and Analekta labels, films for PBS and Classical Kids, and touring performances to such concert halls as the Thomaskirche in Leipzig, Royal Albert Hall/BBC Proms, Carnegie Hall, Trinity Church Wall Street, the Kennedy Center, and the Music Center at Strathmore.   

The Choir has been recognized for its outstanding educational outreach programs (Bach at Noon, Bach to School, imaginative Family Concerts, selection of Choral Scholars, collaborative initiatives with other Arts organizations, among many other activities) through grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the J.S. Bach Foundation in Switzerland and many others. The Choir was the first American recipient of the Swiss foundation’s annual award, recognizing its outstanding work in Bach performance and education for young people.  

Currently The Choir has responded to the COVID-19 restrictions by creating new programming, including a pre-recorded Bach at Noon series and the Moments of Comfort series featuring soloists and members of the Bach Festival Orchestra and Choir. 

Qualifications: 

The ideal candidate will have a minimum of five years of senior management experience in an organization of similar size and scope in the performing arts sector, preferably in the choral arts. 

Other qualifications include: a track record in successful financial management, fund-raising, concert production and tour management, with exceptional written and oral communication skills, as well as a facility with digital environments.  A degree/training in arts administration, not for profit management, and music is preferred.  

Our experience in dealing with the COVID-19 shutdown has underscored our continuing need to embrace new and developing technology and digital tools to communicate with our current stakeholders, as well as enhancing our educational activities and outreach efforts to attract new, more diverse audiences.   We are working collectively to create a broad new vision for where The Choir fits in this changing world and how we will remain relevant for the next 125 years.      

In addition we seek: 

Experience in planning and implementing fund-raising efforts with the ability to cultivate, solicit, and steward major individual gifts, corporate sponsors, legacy gifts, and foundation/government grants; 

The ability to lead, inspire, and motivate staff and volunteers in an environment that fosters creativity, a commitment to excellence, teamwork, and mutual respect; 

The ability to understand and communicate with all stakeholders including singers of all ages, donors, professional musicians, Board members, and Artistic Directors; 

Experience with creating and managing budgets, financial projections, and cash flow reports; 

Outstanding organizational skills and a track record of meticulous execution of plans; 

Knowledge of not for profit governance, legal requirements in the area of human resources, and contemporary issues in the choral field;   

The ability to think strategically while balancing a full portfolio of project tasks; 

Experience in collaborating with a wide network of partnerships;

A passionate commitment to the music of Johann Sebastian Bach.

 Other Information and Application Process:    

Compensation commensurate with experience.  Relocation assistance, if needed, is negotiable.  The new Executive Director is expected to start by June 2021.      

Interested candidates are invited to submit a letter of interest, a resume, salary expectations, and a list of references in confidence by Friday, January 21, 2021 to: 

Margaret Genovese

Senior Partner

GENOVESE, VANDERHOOF & ASSOCIATES
gvasearch@gmail.com
416/340-2762 
For additional information, see:
 www. Bach.org, www.genovesevanderhoof.com

The Bach Choir of Bethlehem does not discriminate against any person based on race, color, gender identify or expression, sexual orientation, religion, age, familial or marital status, veteran status, non-job related disability or any other basis protected by applicable federal, state, or local laws.