Dr. Michael PfitzerDr. Michael Pfitzer, new permanent music director

The Mystic Chorale has announced in a news release that Dr. Michael Pfitzer will be its new permanent music director, beginning in March.

Mystic is a nonprofit, nonaudition chorus that offers three seasons of singing annually. Pfitzer will direct the fall 2024 and spring 2025 seasons; Mystic’s traditionally scheduled gospel-music season, held in winter, is currently in session and is being led by Jonathan Singleton, as in the past.

Dr. Pfitzer is only the second permanent music director in the history of the 34-year-old Arlington-based community chorus.

He was chosen after a lengthy search conducted following Mystic Chorale founder Nick Page’s move to the Midwest last year, the organization said.

The organization stated that Pfitzer is widely known and respected for being an innovative and engaging conductor, educator and community music maker. He is a fervent advocate for creating strong and diverse communities through concerts featuring music from a wide variety of places, cultures and eras and for featuring songs of social justice and inclusiveness. His pioneering projects to safely make music together during Covid-19 were profiled in the New York Times and Boston Globe and on television news broadcasts.

Currently choral director at Deerfield Academy, Pfitzer has conducted choirs at universities such as Harvard University and Boston University, and he has led international performances in Cuba, Romania and Brazil. He has also conducted dozens of musical theatre and opera productions, led clinics and orchestral festivals, and performed as an oratorio soloist.

The Mystic Chorale board's co-president, Olivia Tappan, expressed her delight with Pfitzer’s hiring and was quoted as saying that he “has all the right stuff for Mystic; he is enthusiastic, supportive, encouraging and inclusive regardless of our ability or skill level. He embraces our mission. We feel blessed that he will be joining us!”

Reflecting on this new position, Pfitzer remarked, per the release, “I could not be happier. The organization was built by Nick Page and our incredible staff and volunteer leadership to be a welcoming musical home for all who love to sing -- and that tradition continues in full force today. I look forward to working with everyone at the Mystic Chorale to continue the group’s deep and storied history into its next chapter.”

Dec. 8, 2023: Mystic Chorale's annual winter gospel session seeks members before concert Feb. 23 in Lexington

This news announcement was published Thursday, Jan. 11, 2024, based on information from Arlyn Roffman, who represents the Mystic Chorale to the media. It was prepared for publication by longtime volunteer Kim Haase.