Artistic Director and Conductor, Schola Cincinnati
Grammy Award-winning conductor Jason Harris is the founding Artistic Director and Conductor of Schola Cincinnati. An active music educator, he has presented lectures and presentations on choral repertoire across the nation, including for the Cleveland Orchestra, University of Michigan, in addition to being the keynote speaker at the 2015 Detroit Choral Conference. He has presented conducting masterclasses at the Eastman School of Music, the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music, University of North Carolina Greensboro, and founded the Oberlin Summer Conducting Institute. As a composer his works have been performed by the University of Cincinnati Choruses and the Penn State University Concert Choir and Oriana Singers.
From 2011 to 2015 Harris served as Director of Choral Ensembles and Assistant Professor of Conducting at the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music, where he conducted the historic Oberlin College Choir, Oberlin Treble Ensemble, and Oberlin Musical Union, and taught choral conducting and choral literature. He has also served on the faculties of Oakland University (MI) and the Cincinnati Conservatory of Music.
From 2002 to 2011 Harris served as Associate Conductor of the University Musical Society Choral Union, a community chorus based in Ann Arbor that frequently appears with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and other nationally acclaimed orchestras. In this capacity he prepared the chorus for performances under such conductors as Valery Gergiev and the Mariinsky Orchestra, Michael Tilson Thomas and the San Francisco Symphony, Sir Neville Marriner, Leonard Slatkin, Neeme Järvi, James Conlon, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, and composer John Adams. In 2006 Harris received two Grammy Awards (“Best Choral Performance” and “Best Classical Album”) as a choral director for the critically acclaimed Naxos recording of William Bolcom’s monumental Songs of Innocence and of Experience.
In 2010 Harris was one of two conductors in the nation selected by Chorus America to participate in a joint Chorus America/League of Symphony Orchestras conducting master class, hosted by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus with Robert Spano and Norman Mackenzie. He has participated in numerous master classes, working with such conductors as Helmuth Rilling, Matthew Halls, Ragnar Bohlin, Gustav Meier, Jeffrey Kahane, and John Alexander.
Harris holds the Bachelor of Music degree in Conducting from Chapman University (CA), and the Master of Music and Doctor of Musical Arts degrees in Conducting from the University of Michigan. His teachers include Jerry Blackstone, Theodore Morrison, and William Hall.