Columbus Symphony Chorus

Superbly balanced, well-rehearsed, and confident.

The Columbus Symphony Chorus, beginning its 62nd season in the fall of 2022, continues to excel under the direction of Ronald J. Jenkins. Under his leadership for the past 40 years, the Chorus has grown both in the quality of its performances and in the diversity of its classical repertoire.

The 130-member Chorus, composed entirely of volunteer singers from central Ohio, performs major works from Bach through the twenty-first century. Past performances have included the requiems of Brahms, Verdi, Fauré, Mozart, and Duruflé; the Bach B Minor Mass; Mozart's Grand Mass in C Minor and Coronation Mass; Haydn's Lord Nelson and Harmonie Mass; Haydn's Creation and the Seasons; Paul Moravec’s Sanctuary Road, Orff’s Carmina Burana and works by Rossini, Walton, Britten, and Prokofiev; and concert performances of operas, including Bizet’s Carmen and Puccini’s La Bohéme. In 2013, the chorus premiered Stephen Paulus' Of Songs and Singing, conducted by Jenkins and commissioned by the chorus to honor his 30+ years of service.

A few excerpts from reviews in the press:

  • Darrel Rosenbluth, New York Concert Review critic remarked of the Chorus after their April 2001 performance of Prologue in Heaven from Mefistofele, "This was choral singing of impeccable realization and subtle shading that carried the celestial paradise of Boito's text to earthly ears."
  • Of Carmina Burana, Columbus Dispatch music critic Barbara Zuck wrote, "The chorus cleanly and clearly led us all through the work's many colors and temperaments."
  • In the Beethoven, the chorus was acclaimed for its “glorious delivery” and in the Haydn, the chorus was given “top billing for its hushed entrance and exquisite, buoyant beauty achieved again and again, and most-consistently conveying the qualities of naiveté and sweetness.”
  • The Symphony Chamber Chorus presented Faure’s Requiem, of which music critic Zuck wrote, “Faure’s setting of this mass requires just the right approach, which Jenkins and his musicians found to perfection.”

The Symphony Chorus’ 2022-23 season will include:


What is a typical schedule for the Symphony Chorus each season?

The chorus rehearses every Tuesday evening from 7:15 to 9:45 p.m. in rehearsal room #1 of the Ohio Theater Pavilion, 55 East State Street. The date of the beginning and ending of each year's rehearsal schedule depends on the repertoire of the particular season. Rehearsals begin for each season in late August.

A typical concert week usually follows the pattern of rehearsals and concerts below:

  • Tuesday evening: chorus and piano with the conductor
  • Wednesday & Thursday evenings: chorus and orchestra with conductor
  • Friday & Saturday evenings (sometimes also Saturday or Sunday matinees): concerts

For information about auditions click here.

Columbus Symphony Chorus Director

The Columbus Symphony (CSO) seeks an experienced conductor for the Columbus Symphony Chorus beginning with the 2023-2024 season. The Columbus Symphony Chorus, founded in 1960, is a 130 voice, all-volunteer, mixed chorus, that performs with the CSO. The Chorus has a distinguished history of excellence, contributing to the cultural enrichment of central Ohio and beyond.

The successful offeror will be a musician of high musical standards, who demonstrates strong leadership and organizational skills with the ability to motivate excellent artistic performances with the Chorus. The Chorus Conductor is responsible for the Chorus’ musical preparation. The Chorus Conductor’s relationship to the Columbus Symphony is as an independent contractor.

Scope of Work

• Conduct weekly rehearsals with the Chorus, which are currently held on Tuesday evenings in Room 1 of the Ohio Theatre from 7:15 to 9:45 pm
• Recruit and retain chorus members
• Musical evaluation of current Chorus members
• Hold auditions twice a year for new chorus members. Auditions are held in front of the Chorus director, the board chair of the Chorus, and the Chorus accompanist.
• Reports to the CSO Music Director and works directly with that person and the Chief Operating Officer of the CSO
• Collaborates with the CSO Music Director on preparing the Chorus for concerts in a manner consistent with the Music Director’s musical intentions
• Meet regularly with the Board of the Symphony Chorus to exchange information and provide input on matters affecting the Chorus
• Attend all rehearsals of the Chorus when they sing with the Orchestra, and is prepared to cover those rehearsals and performances if needed
• Meet with the Chorus for warmups and to reinforce directions provided by the CSO Music Director during concert week rehearsals and performances
• Prepare and conduct stand-alone Chorus concerts if applicable
• Collaborate with the Chorus accompanist, communicating regularly on rehearsal plans
• Process Chorus administrative work, including consultation on repertoire, schedules, and Chorus communications
• Acts as an ambassador of the Columbus Symphony Orchestra and Chorus in the community, including media, donors and potential Chorus members

Considerations for Evaluation

• Education; a Master’s degree in music, including conducting and vocal training is preferred
• Experience; A minimum of 10 years’ experience conducting skilled adult mixed voice choruses and professional musicians is preferred, including experience:
     o conducting performances of choral and orchestral works
     o working with and motivating volunteer groups
     o preparing a Chorus to sing in multiple languages
• Knowledge of standard choral/orchestral repertoire
• Communication skills and emotional intelligence
• Commitment to principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion

Submission Information

Please submit your proposal to Daniel Walshaw at [email protected]. Your proposal should include the following details:
• A summary of your experience and qualifications as it relates to the scope of work and considerations of evaluation, preferred format is a CV.
• Links to video(s) that demonstrate your conducting in a rehearsal and performance

About the Columbus Symphony Chorus The Columbus Symphony Chorus, in its 63rd season, continues to excel under the direction of Dr. Ronald J. Jenkins in his final season as conductor before retiring. Under his leadership for the past forty years, the Chorus has grown both in the quality of its performances and in the diversity of its classical repertoire. Critics have consistently lauded the Chorus ’performances including the New York Concert Review: "This was choral singing of impeccable realization and subtle shading.”

This season the Chorus numbers 133 singers (68 women and 65 men), comprised entirely of talented volunteer singers from central Ohio. They have performed major works from Bach through the 21st century.

Past performances have included the requiems of Brahms, Verdi, Faure, Mozart and Durufle; the Bach B Minor Mass and St. John Passion; Mozart’s Grand Mass in C Minor and Coronation Mass; Haydn’s Lord Nelson and Harmonie masses; Haydn’s Creation and the Seasons; Handel’s Messiah and Judas Maccabaeus; Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony; Mendelssohn’s Elijah; Mahler’s Symphony No. 2, 3 and 8; also works by Rossini, Orff, Walton, Bernstein, Britten, Copland, Prokofiev, Boito, Vaughan Williams, Moravec and Janacek to name but a few; and concert performances of operas including Bizet’s Carmen, Puccini’s La Boheme and Turandot, and Wagner’s Parsifal among others. In 2013 the Chorus premiered Stephen Paulus ’ Of Songs and Singing, conducted by Jenkins and commissioned by the Chorus to honor his 30+ years of service. Casey Cook is the Chorus ’accompanist. Lauren Grangaard serves as the current chorus chair.

The Chorus rehearses every Tuesday evening from 7:15 to 9:45 p.m. starting in late August and continuing through May with an occasional summer event. Auditions are held each year in August and January. More information can be found at