A conductor and composer, Eric William Barnum continues to passionately seek new ground in the choral field. Working with choirs of all kinds, his collaborative leitmotif endeavors to provide intensely meaningful experiences for singers and audiences.
Barnum is currently the Director of Choral Activities at Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa and previously, the Director of Choral Activities at the University of Wisconsin, Oshkosh. He holds a DMA in Choral Conducting from the University of Washington (Seattle, WA), under the direction of Dr. Geoffrey Boers. He has an advanced degree in conducting from Minnesota State University (Mankato, MN), primary study with Dr. David Dickau, as well as BAs in Composition and Vocal Performance from Bemidji State University (Bemidji, MN). He has appeared as a conductor across the United States and the International stage, and has worked with some of the most innovative minds in the choral field.
His compositional voice and vision continue to gain popularity around the globe with performances from choirs Internationally. He composes for choral ensembles of all types, from professional to youth choirs, and has received numerous awards and prestigious grants such as a Bush Foundation Artist Fellowship and a McKnight Foundation Grant. He has also held residencies with such ensembles as Choral Arts (Seattle, WA), Cantus (Trondheim, Norway), The Rose Ensemble (St. Paul, MN), Kantorei (Denver, CO), Magnum Chorum (Minneapolis, MN), Coro Vocal Artists (Tucson, AZ), as well as with many high schools and collegiate choirs.
Ted Brimeyer joins the faculty of Drake University in 2020 as an Adjunct Teaching Artist conducting Borealis, Drake’s auditioned treble choir.
Ted also serves as Director of Choirs at Urbandale High School, a position he has held since 2010. There, he leads a vibrant vocal music program at UHS enrolling 350 students in six performing ensembles. Under his direction the choirs at Urbandale have been recognized at state, regional, and national levels with highlights including the 2020 American Prize in Choral Performance, 2019 American Choral Directors Association Conference, 2017 Iowa Choral Showcase, and Regional ACDA Conferences in 2016 and 2014.
Passionate about the creation of new music, Ted worked to establish the Composer in Residence Project at UHS. This endeavor seeks to commission choral works for mixed, treble, and bass voicings and provide young singers the authentic experience of workshopping music with the composer. Recent collaborations include Dr. Andrea Ramsey, Elaine Hagenberg, Connor Koppin, and Drake’s own Dr. Eric Barnum.
Ted’s professional training includes a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from Michigan State University and a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Music Education and German from Iowa State University. He owes a great debt to his many mentors including David Rayl, Jonathan Reed, and James Rodde in conducting and Molly Fillmore and Donald Simonson in voice.
Cooking, being outdoors, and playing with kids Malley, Saffi, and August are among his favorite pastimes. He is constantly finding inspiration and joy with his beautiful, supportive, and patient partner, Elyse.