Director of Music

Wellesley Hills Congregational Church
Wellesley Hills Congregational Church 207 Washington Street Wellesley Hills, MA 02481
Type of Position: 
Application Deadline: 
Friday, April 21, 2023

Wellesley Hills Congregational Church

Job Description – Director of Music


Title:  Director of Music

Reports to:  Senior Minister


The Wellesley Hills Congregational Church is seeking a full time Director of Music who will oversee and implement a dynamic intergenerational music program that complements our sacred and secular missions.  The Director of Music will serve as both organist and director of the adult choir, oversee the children’s and youth music programs, and collaborate with the bell choir director.  The Director of Music will work closely with members of the clergy and church staff, and must be a person of prayer and Christian faith.


The Hills Church is a vibrant community of faith and action, with a deep and abiding love of sacred music, which unites us all in worship.  Founded in 1847, the Hills Church is both a traditional and progressive spiritual home to people from all faith traditions and a broad range of backgrounds. 


We are an Open and Affirming Church that celebrates diversity, equity and inclusion, and welcomes people of all ages and family configurations.  We are committed to seeking, creating, and living into the promise of God’s community, including through an increase of truth in the telling and hearing of our racial history.


The Hills Church is blessed with two pipe organs.  The Chancel Organ, the organ in the main sanctuary, was built by the Schantz Organ Company of Orrville, Ohio in 1961.  It was substantially re-built and re-positioned by the Foley-Baker Organ Company of Tolland, Connecticut in 2002.  The organ has three keyboards with 38 stops, a pedalboard with 19 stops, and approximately 2880 pipes.


The organ in the loft of Wallace Chapel, which was installed and dedicated in 1984, is one of the hidden jewels of the Hills Church.  It was built by the Noack Organ Company of Georgetown, Massachusetts, under the supervision of Fritz Noack.  It is housed in a magnificent antique oak case built in Switzerland in the 17th century, and is complemented by the remarkable acoustics of Wallace Chapel.  The organ has one divided keyboard with eight stops, and a pedalboard with two stops.  There are over 850 pipes.


There are three baby-grand pianos in excellent condition, an early 20th-century Steinway piano in the Sanctuary, a mid-20th century Steinway piano in the Reception Room, and a late 20th century Boston piano in the Assembly Room.  There are also two electronic keyboards (both are Clavinovas, by Yamaha), one in Wallace Chapel and one in the Bell Room.  The church owns

5 Octaves of Schulmerich handbells and 5 octaves of Malmark chimes. A second three-octave set of Schulmerich bells (owned by the director) is available.

The Wellesley Hills Congregational Church is located in Wellesley, Massachusetts, a suburb just west of Boston, home to outstanding music and arts organizations such as the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Tanglewood Festival Chorus.  The New England Conservatory and other esteemed educational institutions are located in the greater Boston area as well.





Knowledge and Skills


  • A graduate degree in Organ Performance (or equivalent), or a graduate degree in Choral Conducting (or equivalent).
  • A minimum of three years’ experience in adult choral conducting and in serving as principal organist for church services, weddings, funerals, memorial services, and special worship services (Christmas Eve, Holy Week, etc.)
  • Extensive knowledge of sacred (liturgical) music from all periods, and extensive knowledge of the hymnody of the Church.
  • Creativity in interpreting music and accompanying congregational and choral singing and soloists.
  • A large and varied repertoire of organ and choral music.
  • Excellent keyboard skills, both organ and piano.
  • Experience conducting large and small chamber and brass ensembles..
  • Excellent communication skills and the ability to interact with and teach people with all levels of musical understanding and experience.
  • Facility in foreign language diction and pronunciation, or access to good resources.




Detailed Description of Responsibilities




  • Play for all services (Sunday morning services as well as Christmas Eve, Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and any other special services).
  • Choose and prepare appropriate Preludes, Postludes, and Interludes as needed.
  • Assist the ministers in the selection of hymns for each service, and prepare to accompany hymns in the appropriate style and way that supports, encourages, and inspires congregational singing, with sensitivity to the text and character of each hymn.
  • First refusal for weddings, funerals, memorial services, and other services as requested.  (Additional compensation is received for weddings, funerals, and memorial services.).
  • Accompany choral anthems and solos in a manner that is appropriately supportive.
  • Adapt music originally written for piano or orchestra to be played on the organ or piano.


Adult Chancel Choir Director


  • Conduct the Chancel Choir, which includes adult and occasional high school-aged volunteers, in addition to four semi-professional vocal soloists who serve as section leaders.
  • Choose all anthems that the Chancel Choir sings each Sunday morning, as well as music for extra services (Christmas Eve, etc.).  The church currently maintains a significant collection of music, and the Director of Music should seek to expand the repertoire, accounting for diversity in style, composer, language, and instrumentation.
  • Prepare and lead the regular rehearsals of the Chancel Choir, which currently rehearses on Wednesday nights and sings on Sunday mornings.
    • Volunteer choir members’ experience ranges from semi-professional to those with limited music-reading skills.
    • The Director should encourage participation by all members, regardless of musical background, and lead rehearsals so that everyone has the opportunity to learn the music thoroughly.
  • When appropriate, the Director should provide theological interpretation of music that will enhance its effect for members and congregants.
  • Communicate regularly with members of the choir through emails about rehearsals, church services, and other important information.
  • Encourage new participation in the Chancel Choir by interested members of the congregation.
  • Engage the best possible vocal soloists to fill the regular positions of Soprano, Alto, Tenor, and Bass. Work with these soloists in preparing appropriate solos for worship services, in addition to supervising their work as Section Leaders of the Chancel Choir.
  • Select extended longer and larger musical offerings for Special Music Sundays, which typically occur on the Third Sunday of Advent and one of the Sundays during Lent.  Plan rehearsals to integrate the preparation of this Special Music into the regular weekly service music.


Music Director Administration


  • Develop and implement an intergenerational plan for music at the Hills Church.
  • Hire and supervise all music-related paid or volunteer positions at the Hills Church.
  • Arrange for tuning and maintenance of the church’s instruments, including the pipe organs, pianos, electronic keyboards, as well as the church’s handbells and chimes, in coordination of the Handbell Choir Director.
  • Maintain the music library, including choral music sung by the choirs, music played by the handbell and chime choirs, and the hymnals.  This includes supervision of sorting, stamping, and filing music.
  • Provide a weekly report to OneLicense, the company with which the Hills Church has an agreement, paying an annual fee for permission to print copyrighted music in the Orders of Worship for our services, and for the permission to include copyrighted music in our live-streams and recorded services posted on YouTube.
    • (NB:  Our agreement with OneLicense covers music published by a large number of publishers.  If we include music in our service that is not covered by the OneLicense agreement, the publisher of said music needs to be contacted to arrange for the appropriate streaming/synchronization license. 
  • Coordinate miscellaneous musical events at the church, such as an annual Christmas Concert, concerts in Wallace Chapel, and recitals by soloists.


Children’s and Youth Music Director


The Director of Music will oversee the Director of Children’s and Youth Music, who will:

  • Prepare for and conduct the children and youth choir musical offerings in worship services.
  • Work with parents to determine the best time to schedule rehearsals.
  • Choose all music that will be performed, being intentional about selecting sacred music that represents a diversity of styles, composers, instrumentation, and cultural traditions.
  • Encourage participation by all young people in the church, regardless of musical background.
  • Lead rehearsals so that everyone has the opportunity to learn the music thoroughly.
  • Coordinate accompaniment for the choirs during worship services.



Bell Choir Director


The Director of Music will collaborate with the Bell Choir Director in:

  • Selecting and purchasing music, assigning parts, and organizing binders.
  • Directing rehearsals and performances.
  • Planning logistics of setting up, taking down, and moving bells, stands and tables when playing in the sanctuary.
  • Supervising the care of the bells, chimes, music and the bell room.
  • Encouraging and recruiting new members to join the bell choir.



Application Deadline:  April 21, 2023


Salary Range:  $70,000 - $100,000 depending on experience and education


Position Type:  Full Time


Apply With:


  • Cover letter and resume or curriculum vitae.
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • Video tape of work as an organist during a worship service, as a soloist, and directing an adult choir during rehearsal and performance.
  • Any links to recent worship services, programs, recordings, and other portfolio samples as available.


Send application to:  [email protected]

Compensation and Benefits: 

Salary Range:  $70,000 - $100,000 depending on experience and education

Application Procedure: 

Apply With:


  • Cover letter and resume or curriculum vitae.
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • Video tape of work as an organist during a worship service, as a soloist, and directing an adult choir during rehearsal and performance.
  • Any links to recent worship services, programs, recordings, and other portfolio samples as available.

Send application to:  [email protected]

Deadline:  April 21, 2023

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