Dr. Scot Hanna-Weir leads the Santa Clara Chorale as their artistic director and is also Director of Choral Activities at Santa Clara University, where he oversees the choral program, directs the SCU Chamber Singers and Concert Choir, and teaches other courses within the music department. As a conductor, singer, pianist, and teacher, Hanna-Weir is known for his insatiable desire for artistic excellence and his deep connection to the personal joy of music making. Comfortable in a variety of genres and styles, Hanna-Weir is a frequent collaborator as conductor, clinician, singer, and pianist with soloists, choirs, composers, and ensembles from a variety of backgrounds and traditions.
Hanna-Weir regularly conducts the combined choirs of Santa Clara University and the Santa Clara Chorale in the performance of masterworks with orchestra. Recent performances include Haydn’s Missa in Angustiis, Mozart’s Requiem and Vesperae Solennes de Confesore, Fauré’s Requiem and Corigliano’s Fern Hill. He also regularly commissions and premieres new works. In the spring of 2017, Hanna-Weir conducted and recorded the world premiere of Scott Gendel’s new concert length oratorio, Barbara Allen, with the Santa Clara University Choirs, the Santa Clara Chorale, and the San José Chamber Orchestra. In 2016, he led the Santa Clara Chamber Singers in the premiere of Andres Solis’ XLIII: A Contemporary Requiem for choir, organ, electronics, and dance. Recent premieres have also included Scott Gendel’s #dreamsongs (2015), the US premiere of Cecilia McDowall’s Ad Lucem (2014), and the west-coast premiere of Jocelyn Hagen’s Ashes of Roses (2016).
As a 2014 conducting fellow at the prestigious Oregon Bach Festival, he intensively studied and conducted the music of J.S. Bach under the tutelage of artistic director Matthew Halls and artistic director emeritus Helmuth Rilling. He assisted Maestro Halls in the world premiere of Hall’s own reconstruction of Bach’s lost St. Mark Passion and also conducted members of the modern and period instrument orchestras, the OBF Vocal Fellows, the Berwick Chorus, and the University of Oregon Chamber Choir.
In addition to his work as a conductor, Hanna-Weir is also an arranger and composer. His 2015 collaboration with fellow SCU faculty composer, Sympathy, a piece for choir and smartphones, has been performed by choirs across California including Biola University, Irvine High School, MiraCosta College, Piedmont Hills High School, and in the fall of 2016, Smith College. Buck v Bell, a setting of the 1927 Supreme Court decision by Oliver Wendell Holmes, was premiered by the SCU Chamber Singers in March of 2017. Scot’s most recent work, The Wound, a setting of Ruth Stone’s poem by the same name was premiered and recorded by the San Diego Pro Arte Voices for their Disarm Hate project in May 2017.
Hanna-Weir holds a Doctor of Musical Arts in choral conducting from the University of Maryland, a Master of Music in choral conducting from the University of Wisconsin, and a Bachelor of Music in choral music education from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. His major conducting teachers have included Matthew Halls, Helmuth Rilling, Edward Maclary, James Ross, Beverly Taylor, William Carroll, and Welborn Young.