The Conductor

Aspaas13Dr. Christopher Aspaas, Robert Scholz Endowed Chair in Music, Associate Professor of Choral/Vocal Music at St. Olaf College, received his Ph.D. in Choral Music Education at The Florida State University in Tallahassee, his M.M. in Choral Conducting from Michigan State University in East Lansing, his B.M. in Voice Performance from St. Olaf. Christopher has served on the faculties of Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington and Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, Massachusetts.

At St. Olaf, Aspaas conducts the Viking Chorus, a 90-voice ensemble of first-year student men, and also leads the Saint Olaf Chapel Choir, a 100-voice ensemble specializing in the performance of oratorio and larger multi-movement works. In recent years, Christopher has conducted performances of  Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem, Mendelssohn’s Elijah, and most recently, Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem, which was chosen for broadcast on Minnesota Public Radio.

His travels as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator have taken Christopher to Alaska, Alberta, British Columbia, Florida, Iowa, Illinois, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Nebraska, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and twice to the Sultanate of Oman. He has conducted All-State Choruses in Colorado, Kentucky, North and South Dakota, Virginia and Wisconsin, and will lead the South Dakota Honors Choir in summer 2013.

Aspaas is also active as a tenor soloist, performing Bach cantatas with Helmuth Rilling and the Oregon Bach Festival Orchestra, the Evangelist roles in the John and Matthew Passions of Bach with the Bach Collegium of Fort Wayne, Ind., and other solo roles with the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra, the Indianapolis Chamber Orchestra, the South Dakota Symphony Orchestra and the St. Petersburg Chamber Philharmonic in Russia. Aspaas traveled to San Luis Obispo, California for a performance of Franz Josef Haydn’sTheresienmesse and Johann Michael Haydn’s Requiem with the Cuesta Master Chorale and Orchestra. In March, Aspaas returned to the role of Evangelist in the St. John Passion at Wingate University, under the direction of Dr. Kenney Potter.