Robin Freeman

Robin Freeman

Director of Music

Conductor and singer Robin Freeman holds a Bachelors of Music in Voice Performance from Gordon College, a Masters of Music in Choral Conducting from Indiana University, and is completing the Doctor of Education in College Teaching of Music at Teachers College, Columbia 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 believeIn 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 (SVS Press). Her recent CD with the newly-established St. Vladimir’s Seminary Women’s Sextet, Every Day Will I Bless Thee, made history by being the first album released by an Orthodox seminary women’s choir. 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.

Educational Background

  • B.M., Gordon College
  • M.M., Indiana University
  • Ed.D.C.T., Teachers College, Columbia University (in process)

Teaching Interests

  • Liturgical Music
  • Conducting
  • Voice
  • Comprehensive Musicianship
  • Music Education

Current Projects and Research Interests

I am interested in how we come to know music, and how we come to know ourselves through music making. As an educator, I am interested in how blurring the lines of formal and informal music education can make music accessible and engaging for all. As a singer and voice teacher, I use body mapping, rooted in Alexander Technique, to eliminate vocal tension and free the voice. As a conductor, I relish opportunities to collaborate with various composers, ensembles, and organizations. As an Orthodox church musician, I am interested in how we understand the role of the music director in a parish, and how the learning community model can provide mutual mentoring and support for Orthodox church music directors.

Recent Courses Taught at SVOTS

  • Fundamentals of Vocal Technique and Church Reading
  • Advanced Chanting for Clergy and Laity
  • Choral Conducting
  • Conducting in the Parish
  • Advanced Choral Conducting
  • Introduction to the Liturgical Music and Practice of the Orthodox Church
  • Intermediate Liturgical Music and Practice of the Orthodox Church in America

Selected Publications

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)

Recent Awards

  • St. Macrina Award for Excellence in Teaching, St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary (2018)
  • Florence K. Geffen Scholarship, Columbia University (2018)

Office

Meyendorff 3

Contact

914.961.8313 x370

robin@svots.edu