Brett Karlin, Artistic Director and Conductor
“This was an intelligently thought-out, well-performed concert, of the kind that Karlin seems most well-suited to. His energy, enthusiasm and deep belief in what he’s doing, plus the fine results he’s getting from his chorale, suggest that the two have a long and fruitful future together, and that’s good news for listeners in South Florida.”
Greg Stepanich, Palm Beach ArtsPaper
As the artistic director and conductor of the Master Chorale of South Florida, Brett Karlin leads up to 120 singers in choral-orchestral masterworks and prepares the choir for collaborative performances with other artists and ensembles, including The Cleveland Orchestra and Andrea Bocelli. Karlin’s dynamic performances have been lauded by critics as, “finely nuanced and expressive…the chorale’s corporate sounds resonant and finely blended” (Lawrence Budmen, South Florida Classical Review). This season, he leads the Master Chorale through classical monoliths—Bach’s Mass in B Minor, Handel’s Messiah, and Berlioz’ Romeo et Juliette—as well as in lighter fare for a program of music by Gilbert & Sullivan.
Karlin is also the artistic director of Florida’s Singing Sons (FSS), an internationally renowned, award-winning youth choir celebrating its 42nd season in Broward County. FSS serves more than 100 students from 3rd through 12th grade organized into four different choirs. Karlin conducts the organization’s premiere ensembles, the Concert Choir and 2nd Generation Singers in performances of a variety of literature that includes choral-orchestral masterworks and sacred literature composed for treble male voices.
Prior to these appointments, Karlin held the position of chorus master for Florida Grand Opera, and also conducted choirs and taught voice at Hillsborough Community College (HCC) in Tampa, Florida. During his two years at HCC, Karlin doubled the choral department’s enrollment and stage-directed and conducted the college’s first opera and oratorio performances.
Karlin has worked with a variety of ensembles, from large symphonic choirs to 12-voice, professional chamber choirs. In 2009, he became the assistant conductor for Seraphic Fire, where he assisted with the ensemble’s critically acclaimed and 2012 Grammy-nominated CD, A Seraphic Fire Christmas. Karlin also served as assistant chorus master and singer for the Professional Chorale Institute's recording of the London version of Brahms' Ein Deutches Requiem, which received a 2012 Grammy nomination for "Best Choral Performance."
From 2012-2013, Karlin was the assistant conductor for The Master Chorale of Tampa Bay. In this position he annually guest conducted on the Florida Orchestra’s subscription series concerts to lead the premiere of The Master Chorale’s annual composition competition winner. During the 2011/12 season, he assisted with the preparation of the Chorale for a Naxos label recording of Frederick Delius’ Seadrift and Appalachia.
Karlin holds a Bachelor of Arts in Voice from Florida State University and a Master of Music from University of South Florida. An avid lover of music from the Baroque era and historically informed performance (HIP), Karlin can be found tuning harpsichords and listening to J.S. Bach when not working with choirs.