Associate Professor of Choral Studies; Director of Choral Activities; Director of the Music Teacher Education Program (Ma5)
Tucker Biddlecombe is Associate Professor and Director of Choral Activities at Vanderbilt University’s Blair School of Music, where he serves as conductor of the Vanderbilt Chorale and Symphonic Choir, and teaches courses in choral conducting and music education. In addition, he serves as Director of Blair's five-year Bachelor of Music/Teacher Education degree (Ma5) program offered in conjunction with Peabody College. Dr. Biddlecombe is a recipient of the Blair School’s Faculty Excellence Award. In 2016, he debuts in his new role as Interim Director of the Nashville Symphony Chorus.
Since joining the faculty in 2012, Biddlecombe has re-invigorated choral activities at the Blair School of Music. Performance highlights include Haydn’s Creation, Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, Brahms’ Schicksalslied, Fauré’s Requiem, Tarik O’Regan’s Triptych, and Rutter’s Mass of the Children performed for Blair’s 50th-anniversary celebration. He created the annual Choral Prism concert, which has become one of the largest-drawing student performances of the Blair concert calendar. Other highlights have included a lecture-concert on the music of Robert Shaw and Alice Parker, a fully staged production of Bernstein’s MASS, and a centenary celebration of Benjamin Britten.
In the coming year, the Vanderbilt choral program will host the cutting-edge vocal ensemble Roomful of Teeth, performing a collaborative concert of William Brittelle’s Psychadelics and Caroline Shaw’s Partita. Biddlecombe's work with the Nashville Symphony Chorus will include chorus preparation for Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 (Resurrection), Handel’s Messiah, and a world-premiere recording of John Harbison’s Requiem.
Over the course of a 10-year career as a public school music educator, Biddlecombe achieved National Board Teacher Certification and was awarded Teacher of the Year at Lawton Chiles High School in Florida. Ensembles under his direction have performed to acclaim at state and division conventions of the American Choral Directors Association. He is an active guest conductor, having conducted all-state choruses in Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, and New York, as well as clinics for hundreds of choirs touring Nashville. He is also a published composer and arranger with choral works printed by Alliance, Hinshaw and Walton Music. Biddlecombe’s article on specificity of conductor feedback was published in the fourth volume of the International Journal of Research in Choral Singing, and he has recently conducted residencies with the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and San Jose State University.
He holds the Ph.D. in Music Education and a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from Florida State University, and a Bachelor of Music degree, with majors in Vocal Performance and Music Education, from the Crane School of Music at SUNY Potsdam. He is a native of Buffalo, N.Y., and resides in Nashville with his wife Mary Biddlecombe, Artistic Director of the Blair Children’s Chorus.