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Kathryn Whitney is a singer, choral conductor, artistic director, voice teacher, choral clinician, musicologist, and arts entrepreneur.
She is the artistic director and conductor of the global virtual family of choirs, SING THE NORTH, which she founded in September 2020 in response to the pandemic. She also artistic directs the One World Baroque Virtual Orchestra & Chorus, also founded in 2020, which she runs with music director, Daniel Taylor. She has been music director of the in-person community choir, the Newcombe Singers of Victoria, BC, since 2022.
Kathryn founded and directs the Pacific Song Collective, based on the unceded traditional territory of the Coast Salish people on Vancouver Island, and the SongArt Performance Research Group, which has run as part of the Institute of Musical Research at the University of London, England, since 2010.
Prior to switching to practical music-making, Kathryn taught music history and aesthetics as a college lecturer at Oxford University for more than a decade, with concurrent teaching appointments at Cambridge and the Royal Academy of Music.
Her work has been supported by a number of organisations, including the Canada Council, the BC Arts Council, the Arts Council of England, the Worshipful Company of Drapers’ of London, the British Overseas Research Council, the Walton Trust, Somerville College and Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, and the BC Touring Council.
Performances include with the Budapest Chamber Opera, the English Baroque Soloists, the Munich Bach Choir, and the Sooke Philharmonic. A clinician with the BC Choral Federation, she has travelled throughout British Columbia to coach amateur and semi-professional choirs. As a conductor, she has prepared choruses and consorts for Daniel Taylor, Steven Devine, and Laurence Cummings. A champion of new music, Kathryn has sung the world premieres of more than 50 compositions, the majority written for her voice.
Kathryn was artist in residence at the Royal Welsh College of Music, at Wolfson College, Oxford, and was a performance fellow at King’s College, London, in association with the Centre for Music Performance as Creative Practice. She is grateful to have had access to training at Oxford (DPhil in music aesthetics), the Guildhall School of Music (PGDip Early Music Performance), and the University of Toronto (BA in music & German).
She learned singing under the guidance of Cornelius Reid in New York, and Dame Emma Kirkby and Professor Susan McCulloch in London.
Above all, Kathryn loves working with amateur singers, whether as a conductor, a voice coach, or a maker of musical projects.
She hopes that you will join her on an upcoming project, and wishes you well with your music-making!