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Christi McLain,
Director & Founder

Christi McLain, D.M.A. is celebrated for her invigorating and thoughtful interpretations of contemporary American opera and has performed throughout the United States, Germany, Austria, Ireland, Luxembourg, and China. Highlights as a soloist include performances with the Hartford Symphony, Phoenix Symphony, Connecticut Lyric Opera, Opera Theater of Connecticut, Opera Connecticut, Hartford Chorale, Hartford Opera Theater, and Hartt Opera Theater.


As a scholar, Dr. McLain's research has focused primarily on twentieth and twenty-first century works. She received a Doctor of Musical Arts in Voice Performance from Arizona State University in 2013, where her primary research focused on musical settings of texts by Nebraskan author and Pulitzer prizewinner, Willa Cather and composer Libby Larsen. She has since continued her focus on new American works. Dr. McLain is a founder and Executive Director of The Blueprint Project, an artist collaborative that champions new music by empowering and amplifying the voices of composers and librettists seeking to create thought-provoking and progressive new American musical works for the stage. In 2021, Blueprint celebrated its inaugural season with Yeltsin in Texas! by Evan Mack and Josh McGuire.

Along with her performing and scholarly work, Dr. McLain currently serves on the voice faculty of Southern Oregon University. Previously, she has held teaching positions Coker University in South Carolina, where she led the opera program and served as the South Carolina Govern of the National Opera Association; the Hartt School of Music at the University of Hartford; and Choate Rosemary Hall. To learn more, visit

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Jerron Jorgensen,

On the podium, Dr. Jerron Jorgensen’s conducting has been hailed as “warm, invigorating, and beautifully paced” (Peter Tiboris) and “passionate and uplifting” (Adolphus Hailstork). At present, Dr. Jorgensen serves as Director of Choral/Vocal Studies at Southern Oregon University and Music Director of the Rogue Valley Chorale. Previously, he served as Director of Choral Activities at Coker University and Music Director at St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church in Hartsville, South Carolina.

Under his direction, his ensembles have been invited to perform at conferences; participated in regional, national, and international tours; premiered commissions by composers of national renown; received accolades in prestigious competitions; and been featured in professional recording projects. The SOU Chamber Choir was invited to perform atthe Oregon Music Educators Association conference in 2024. The Coker Singers—the select ensemble at his previous institution—were invited to perform at the South Carolina ACDA conference, completed a professional recording project, and were named national semi-finalists in The American Prize in the collegiate chorus division. He specializes in 20th and 21st century works and is active as both an operatic and choral conductor.

He recently conducted the world premiere of The Cure at Troy (Evan Mack) at Carnegie Hall, as well as the premiere of Half the World by Dale Trumbore and the SATB premiere of Seven Last Words of the Unarmed by Joel Thompson. Contemporary opera highlights include The Ghosts of Gatsby and Lucinda y las Flores de la Nochebuena (Evan Mack & Joshua McGuire) at Southern Oregon University and Coker University ; Amahl and the Night Visitors (Menotti) at The Hartt School; and the premieres of Verlorene Heimat (Dawn Sonntag) and The Stranger the Better (Liam Wade) with Hartford Opera Theater. As an administrator, Dr. Jorgensen has worked to found numerous initiatives and organizations in the arts. At SOU, Dr. Jorgensen founded the Contemporary American Vocal Music Initiative, focused on the advocacy and performance of works by living American composers in the areas of both choir and opera. Through CAVMI, SOU’s new Lyric Theatre program will present the one-act opera The Ghosts of Gatsby by Evan Mack and the Chamber Choir will premiere a new choral commission by composer Amy Scurria on its accessibility-themed concert capABLE.

Dr. Jorgensen has worked as a performer with opera companies, orchestras, and choruses in both the United States and abroad. As a chorister, he has performed with numerous professional choirs, including the GRAMMY®- nominated ensembles True Concord Voices & Orchestra in Tuscon, AZ and the Taylor Festival Choir in Charleston, SC. Professional work as a soloist include performances with Hartford Opera Theater, Hartford Independent Chamber Orchestra, Con Brio Choral Society, Torrington Symphony Orchestra, Rhode Island Civic Chorale & Orchestra, Soli Deo Gloria Orchestra, New Haven Oratorio Choir, Hartt Wind Ensemble, New Haven Chorale, and Madison Lyric Stage, MusicaNova, Scottsdale Musical Arts, Heartland Opera, and Brookings Chamber Music Society.

As an academic, Dr. Jorgensen regularly visits high schools to provide in-class clinics, serves as guest conductor for regional honors festivals, and frequently presents on developing and implementing educational scaffolding techniques in music programs at professional conferences for organizations such as NAfME, ACDA, NCCO, MTNA, and NOA.

Dr. Jorgensen holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in Voice Performance from The Hartt School, University of Hartford; a Master of Music in Voice Performance from Arizona State University; and a Bachelor of Arts in Voice from South Dakota State University.

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