Assistant to the Director, Choral Conducting Institute, Interlochen College of Creative Arts
Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Japanese-American conductor Shohei Kobayashi aspires to synthesize his varied insights as singer/songwriter, multi-genre bandmate, choral musician and art song interpreter to inspire deeply personal musical experiences. Following two years of assistant conducting at his alma mater, Lewis & Clark College, and at First Presbyterian Church of Portland, Shohei moved to Ann Arbor in 2015 to begin his graduate choral conducting studies at the University of Michigan with Jerry Blackstone. Now a second-year doctoral student, Shohei continues his conducting studies with Eugene Rogers and currently serves as assistant conductor of the University of Michigan Men’s Glee Club, co-conductor of the Orpheus Singers, assistant conductor for UMS Choral Union, and Chancel Choir Director at First Congregational Church of Ann Arbor. At the university, Shohei’s previous posts include director of the Residential College Singers, guest conductor of the University Choir, chorus master for U-M opera productions, and assistant conductor for Chamber Choir, University Choir, Women’s Glee Club, and Arts Chorale.
In summer 2018, Shohei attended the 9th Ithaca International Conducting Masterclass, the inaugural Choral Conducting Institute at Interlochen, University of Illinois’s Choral Conducting Symposium in Urbana-Champaign, the Adult Choir Camp at Interlochen as a choral apprentice, Chorus America’s 2018 Conducting Academy in Fullerton as one of 12 conducting fellows, and Helmuth Rilling’s Fifth Weimar Bach Academy. In previous years, Shohei was one of five MCP Conducting Fellows at the National Collegiate Choral Organization’s 2017 conference, conducting apprentice at the 2017 Hot Springs Music Festival, recipient of Berkshire Choral International’s Robert Page Conducting Fellowship, and a conducting fellow at the 2016 Norfolk Choral Festival. In addition to his primary mentors at Michigan, Shohei has worked with Larry Rachleff, Kathy Romey, David Hayes, Andrew Megill, Lucinda Carver, Simon Carrington, Joseph Flummerfelt, Martin Katz, Peter Bay, Ann Howard Jones, Jan Harrington, Katherine FitzGibbon, and Kenneth Kiesler.
Shohei earned a Master of Music degree in Conducting from the University of Michigan in 2017 and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Music (focus in composition and minor in math) from Lewis & Clark College in 2013.