The Music Director:
Virginia E. M. Tilley is an emerging choral conductor, organist, and soprano soloist, with a concentration in early sacred music. A third-year at The College of William & Mary, she is pursuing a major in Music and a minor in Classical Studies with a Latin concentration. She studies organ with Professor Tom Marshall. Starting Fall 2017, Virginia will be the organist for weekly Evening prayer services of the Episcopal campus ministry at The College. Alongside her studies, she maintains a choral scholar position at Bruton Parish Church, Williamsburg, Virginia, as well as a part time position at River Road Church, Baptist, Richmond, Virginia, under Dr. Bob Gallagher. Most recently, she has begun singing with the St. Stephens Episcopal Church, Richmond “Sanctuary” Choir, Sunday evenings during the Compline service.
Nationally, Virginia has immersed herself in choral programs, including Amherst Early Music Festival’s, Project for Voices and Lutes where under the musical direction of Dr. Julianne Baird and Richard Stone, she sang Soprano I for Buxtehude’s Membra Jesu Nostri. She has also appeared in various solo appointments throughout the Richmond area. Virginia has participated in vocal master classes with Annamarie Zmolek, Dr. Randy Bills, as well as highly acclaimed baroque soloist, Dr. Julianne Baird.
As a conductor, Virginia has become active in various assistant positions under Dr. Bob Gallagher at River Road Church, Baptist, including assistant director of Dr. Gallagher’s select children’s ensemble, Camerata. Virginia has high hopes for Schola and is excited to grow the group she continues the appointment of music director for Fall 2017.
Past Music Directors:
Jacob G. Robins is a baritone singer currently centered in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Although pursuing a career in chemistry research, Jacob has been an active choral collaborator for many years across the East Coast. He has spent the last four years singing with the William & Mary Choir, under Dr. James Armstrong, as well as conducting the Schola Cantorum since Spring 2014. Jacob graduated magna cum laude from The College of William & Mary this past springs with Honors in Chemistry. He looks forward to continuing his scientific and artistic pursuits at the nation’s first public university, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, as a Ph.D. candidate.
Matthew F. Reese is an American conductor, cellist, and tenor, active on both sides of the Atlantic. A recipient of Oxford’s prestigious conducting prize, Matthew has held the Music Directorships of both the Oxford University Philharmonia (2016-2017), and the Oxford University Wind Orchestra (2015-2017), and currently directs the emerging chamber orchestra, Consortium Novum. In 2016, he was named the University’s inaugural ‘Conducting Scholar’, assisting Maestro John Traill and the St Anne’s Camerata. As an active theatre conductor, Matthew has recently conducted performances of Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro and Così fan tutte, as well as Purcell’s Dioclesian.
Matthew has studied conducting under the Celibidache student, Angel Gil-Ordóñez (PostClassical), Paul Spicer (Finzi Singers), Akiko Fujimoto (Minnesota Orchestra), and with the Haydn scholar, James Armstrong (William & Mary). He has participated in masterclasses with Leon Botstein, Harold Farberman, Mark Gibson, Marios Papadopoulos, and Markand Thakar. His principal cello study occurred with Neal Cary (Principal, Richmond Symphony), a pupil of Leonard Rose, and with Judith Shiffers (Israel Chamber Orchestra), a student of Orlando Cole and Paul Tortelier.
Equally at home in the choir stalls, Matthew is currently Master of the Music at Pusey House, Oxford, conducting one of the University’s premier mixed-voice chamber choirs. He is an alumnus of the Choir of The Queen’s College, Oxford, and a Deputy Lay Clerk in the Choirs of Men & Boys, and Men & Girls at Washington National Cathedral. Matthew earned his B.A. magna cum laude with High Honours in Music from America’s second-oldest university, the College of William & Mary (1693), where he is the founding Music Director Emeritus of the William & Mary Schola Cantorum. Matthew also holds an M.Phil in Musicology from the University of Oxford, where he is currently a doctoral candidate in Music.