Robin FreemanDirector of Music
Conductor and singer Robin Freeman holds a Bachelors of Music in Voice Performance from Gordon College and a Masters of Music in Choral Conducting from Indiana University. Robin has worked with a wide range of choirs, including professional chamber choirs, church choirs, children’s choirs, community choirs, college choirs, and opera choruses. 2012 marked her first season as the Assistant Conductor of The Princeton Festival, where she served as the Chorus Master for Rachmaninoff’s Francesca da Rimini. In 2015, she served as the Chorus Master the Festival's production of Le Nozze di Figaro, to critical acclaim.
Robin has been involved with music at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary since 2006, serving as a singer, soloist, conductor, and instructor. In May 2012, she conducted the St. Vladimir’s Seminary Chorale in their New York City debut in a program she designed for the concert hall, entitled ORIENT: Sacred Song and Image, and in May 2013, she directed the Chorale in a concert weaving together text, music, and silence entitled Lex orandi, lex credendi: As we pray, so we believe. In 2014, the Chorale performed in the Spirit and Sound concert series entitled Heaven and Earth: Sacred Music from the Byzantine Greek and Slavic Eastern Orthodox Traditions, at the invitation of Columbia University's Institute of Religion, Culture, and Public Life. Under her direction, the Chorale has two recordings with St. Vladimir's Seminary Press. In 2017, she launched an innovative program to address the challenges parish music programs face in America, called "Revitalizing Parish Music." Read a full description of the program, including sample Sessions and Workshops, and pricing options, here. In addition to her work with the choirs of St. Vladimir’s Seminary, Robin served as the Director of Music at Holy Trinity Russian Orthodox Church in Yonkers, NY.
As a singer, Robin has performed in North America, Europe, and Asia. She has performed a wide variety of repertoire, including choral and chamber music, opera and operetta, oratorio, art song, musical theater, and jazz. Stage credits include Gounod’s Le Médecin malgré lui (English language permiere); Bernard Rands’ Vincent (world premiere); The Secret Garden; Anything Goes; and Into the Woods.
- B.M., Gordon College
- M.M., Indiana University
- Liturgical Music
Current Projects and Research Interests
As a singer and voice teacher, I am drawn to the study of vocal production and pedagogy. I am especially interested in the development of the female voice and the elimination of vocal tension. With each ensemble I direct, be it a professional opera chorus or a children's choir, I enjoy discovering ways to dramatically and positively affect the group's choral sound. I work with conducting students to develop a solid foundation of conducting technique and a clear understanding of effective rehearsal technique. As an Orthodox church musician, I am interested in how we see and understand the role of the music director in a parish, and how the musical world of a parish can affect worship.
Recent Courses Taught at SVOTS
Fundamentals of Vocal Technique and Church Reading
Advanced Chanting for Clergy and Laity
- Choral Conducting
- Conducting in the Parish
- Full of Grace: Great Vespers for the Dormition of the Theotokos, St. Vladimir's Seminary Press (2014)
- St. Vladimir's Live: The Chorale and Octet in Concert, St. Vladimir's Seminary Press (2014)
- ORIENT: Sacred Song and Image EP, St. Vladimir's Seminary Press (2012)
Recent Conference Presentations and Activities
- Le Nozze di Figaro, Princeton Music Festival, Princeton NJ (Chorus Master, 2015 season)
- Heaven and Earth: Sacred Music from the Byzantine Greek and Slavic Eastern Orthodox Music Traditions, St. Vladimir's Seminary Chorale, New Rochelle NY and Barnard College, New York NY (Concert, 2014)
- Lex orandi, lex credendi: As we pray, so we believe, St. Vladimir's Seminary Chorale, New Rochelle NY (Concert, 2013)
- Instructor and Guest Conductor, Sacred Music Institute, Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America, Bolivar PA (2012-present)
- ORIENT: Sacred Song and Music, St. Vladimir’s Seminary Chorale, New York NY (Concert, 2012)
- Francesca da Rimini, Princeton Music Festival, Princeton NJ (Chorus Master, 2012 season)