Location: New York, USA
Dr. Stephen Black enjoys an active career as a choral conductor, and has conducted numerous choirs in New York and Los Angeles. He is currently the conductor of Amuse, a select women’s chamber choir in New York City which sings repertoire from all periods. Dr. Black previously was the Artistic Director of the Central City Chorus. Over five seasons audiences heard him lead the ensemble in music from the standard choral canon such as the Brahms Requiem and the music of Bach, as well as more eclectic repertoire such as the Requiem of Frederick Delius and the New York City premiere of Carol Barnett’s The World Beloved: A Bluegrass Mass. Dr. Black has prepared choruses for performances of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 at Riverside Church with the Park Avenue Chamber Symphony, Mendelssohn’s Elijah with the Astoria Symphony, and William Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast with the Empire State Youth Orchestra. Dr. Black has been a guest conductor for the Empire City Men's Chorus, St. George’s Choral Society, the West Village Chorale, the Association of Connecticut Choruses, the American Opera Project, the National Association of Composers East Coast Chapter, Lincoln Center Theater and HarlemStage.
Dr. Black is also active as an organist and church musician, and is currently the Director of Music at St. Gregory the Great Church in Harrison, NY. For eleven years he was the Director of Music at St. Joseph's Church Yorkville, New York City’s German national parish on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. In April 2008 Dr. Black led the church’s choral ensembles in a concert of music by Arvo Pärt, Aaron Jay Kernis, and J. S. Bach on the occasion of Pope Benedict XVI’s internationally televised visit to the historic parish. In 1999 he was one of six finalists in the American Guild of Organists Young Artist Competition. Dr. Black has played recitals on the great organs of Washington National Cathedral; St. Patrick's Cathedral and St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue in New York City, and Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania. He was a featured organ performer at the 2012 American Choral Directors Association Western Division conference in Reno, NV.
Dr. Black is continually involved in the performance of new music. He commissioned composers Elliot Levine and Kristin Kuster to write works for the Central City Chorus, and has conducted New York City premieres of compositions by Emma Lou Diemer, Kirke Mechem, Steven Stucky, and Emmy Award-winning composer Steve Heitzeg. As a professional singer specializing in contemporary music, Dr. Black has sung in premieres of new works in Carnegie Hall and Avery Fisher Hall. He has performed and recorded new music with the New York Virtuoso Singers, the Gregg Smith Singers, the Society for Universal Sacred Music and the Vedantic Arts Ensemble.
Dr. Black holds degrees from the University of Southern California Thornton School of Music, the Yale School of Music and the University of Louisville. He is a native of Kentucky.