Biography

New York City Choir Choral Conductor and Baritone Malcolm J. Merriweather

Photo by Sekou Luke

Conductor, Malcolm J. Merriweather begins his tenure as Music Director of New York City’s The Dessoff Choirs, known for their performances of great choral works from the pre-Baroque era through the 21st century. He is an Assistant Professor and Director of Choirs at Brooklyn College Conservatory of Music of the City University of New York, Artist-in-Residence at Union Theological Seminary, and the Music Director of “Voices of Haiti,” a 60-member children’s choir in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, funded by the Andrea Bocelli Foundation.

Merriweather makes his Lincoln Center conducting debut with The Dessoff Choirs, conducting Mozart’s Requiem, Steve Stucky’s Take him earth, and David Hurd’s In honor of Martin. Other highlights of the 2016-2017 season include: Handel’s Messiah at Brooklyn College and the Harvard Club of New York; Leonard Berstein’s Chichester Psalms at Brooklyn College; and Bach’s Lobet den Herrn, alle Heiden, BWV 230 and Jesu Meine Freude, BWV 227 with The Dessoff Choirs. Recent conducting highlights have included Vivaldi’s Gloria and Orff’s Carmina Burana. Soloist engagements for the 2016-2017 season include singing the baritone solos in Rautavaara’s Vigilia as a part of the Great Music in a Great Space series at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine; the music of William Byrd with Parthenia; and stepping down from the podium with The Dessoff Choirs to sing Barber’s Dover Beach.

Recent soloist engagements have included Heinrich Schütz’s Musikalische Exequien, conducted by Kent Tritle, and Judith Zaimont’s Parable with Musica Sacra at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine. He was the baritone soloist in Ralph Vaughan Williams’s Dona Nobis Pacem with the Oratorio Society of New York on their concert tour of Halle, Dresden, and Leipzig in Germany. Additionally, Merriweather has been featured as a soloist with the Boston Symphony Orchestra, The Dessoff Choirs, the New York Choral Society, and Bach Vespers Choir and Orchestra at the Holy Trinty Lutheran Church in New York City. The baritone has premiered contemporary solo works by Eve Beglarian, John Liberatore, Ju Ri Seo, Douglas Fisk, and James Adler. He has been a fellowship recipient at the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival and at the Tanglewood Music Center.

Merriweather holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Conducting from the studio of Kent Tritle at the Manhattan School of Music, where his doctoral dissertation “Now I walk in Beauty, Gregg Smith: A Biography and Complete Works Catalog” constituted the first complete works list for the composer and conductor. He received Master of Music degrees in Choral Conducting and in Vocal Performance from the studio of Rita Shane at the Eastman School of Music, as well as his Bachelor of Music degree in Music Education from Syracuse University, summa cum laude.

His professional affiliations include membership in Pi Kappa Lambda, the American Choral Directors Association, and Chorus America.

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