WESTMINSTER SYMPHONIC CHOIR
Recognized as one of the world’s leading symphonic choral ensembles, the Westminster Symphonic Choir, conducted by James Jordan and Associate Conductor Tyler Weakland, has recorded and performed with major orchestras under virtually every internationally acclaimed conductor of the past 90 years.
The choir first performed in Princeton in 1934 when it joined The Philadelphia Orchestra and Leopold Stokowski to perform Bach’s Mass in B Minor in the Princeton University Chapel to celebrate the move of Westminster Choir College to New Jersey. Recent seasons have included a performance of Holst’s The Planets with The Philadelphia 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. The choir can be heard on recordings with Leonard Bernstein and the New York Philharmonic, and most notably, Bernstein’s MASS with The Philadelphia Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin, released on the Deutsche Grammophon label, and the Benjamin Britten War Requiem with the New York Philharmonic, conducted by Kurt Masur.
Last season, the choir performed Handel’s Messiah with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s using a new libretto in Spanish, under the baton of Reuben Valenzuela of the Bach Collegium San Diego. The choir also performed Orff’s Carmina Burana under conductor Jenny Wong of the LA Master Chorale. This Christmas, the Westminster Symphonic Choir is featured on the 30th Anniversary broadcast of Christmas with Westminster: An Evening of Readings and Carols available across 350 public television stations nationwide and on PBS Passport during the holiday season, in addition to the release of a 2-CD set of the complete performance. In spring 2024, the choir will perform Orff’s Carmina Burana in Carnegie Hall with the Orchestra of St. Luke’s and the Young People’s Chorus of New York under the direction of Tito Muñoz.
GRAMMY®-nominated conductor James Jordan is conductor of the Westminster Symphonic Choir and the world-renowned Westminster Choir. At Westminster he directs the graduate program in choral conducting and serves as director of choral studies for the college. He is recognized and praised throughout the musical world as one of America’s preeminent conductors, recording artists, writers, music psychologists and innovators in choral music. He was described as a “visionary” by the Choral Journal, which cited his book Evoking Sound as a “must read.” He is the most published musician in the world. His 60 books explore both the philosophical, pedagogical and spiritual basis of musicianship.
His twenty CDs have received critical praise. Gramophone has described him as a conductor of “forceful and intimate choral artistry.” Regarding the GRAMMY®-nominated recording of Annelies, Choir and Organ wrote, “Jordan’s instinctive understanding of the score makes this a profound and emotionally charged experience.” His CDs can be heard on the NAXOS, Spiritum, and GIA Choralworks labels and can be heard on all streaming outlets. He is exclusively published By GIA Music, Inc. He is also a host on the nationally syndicated radio program Sounds Choral of WWFM, the Classical network.
He serves as co-director of the Choral Institute at Oxford with James Whitbourn where Westminster Choir is in residence. He is artistic director and conductor of the professional choral ensemble, The Same Stream.