Dr. 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 2009, Aspaas led the Chapel Choir and St. Olaf Orchestra in a performance of Felix Mendelssohn’s monumental oratorio, Elijah,and recently conducted the Brahms Requiem in April 2011.
In addition to conducting, he leads coursework in choral literature, choral conducting, and private applied voice. In 2008, Aspaas was appointed as the Music Director and Conductor for Magnum Chorum, a Twin Cities choral ensemble who is “Transforming Audiences through Artistry and Spirit.”
His travels as a guest conductor, clinician, and adjudicator have taken Christopher to Alaska, Florida, Illinois, Masschusetts, Minnesota, 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 Kentucky, South Dakota, Virginia and Wisconsin, and led the 2009 Anacrusis Boys’ Honor Choir in Minnesota.
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. Most recently, Aspaas traveled to San Luis Obispo, California for a performance of Franz Josef Haydn’s Theresienmesse and Johann Michael Haydn’s Requiem with the Cuesta Master Chorale and Orchestra.