Therees Tkach Hibbard is Associate Director of Choral Activities and associate professor of choral music at the University of Nebraska Lincoln School of Music. She has conducted choirs ranging from young children to professional singers; and has served as adjudicator, workshop leader, and guest conductor for numerous choral organizations throughout Great Britain, Ireland, Europe and North America; and recently in Hong Kong and Muscat, Oman. Before joining the faculty at the UNL School of Music she worked for twelve years as a choral conductor, singing tutor and senior lecturer at several UK colleges and universities in the London area including the London College of Music, the Royal College of Music (junior department), and Roehampton University where she also served for two years as Programme Convener for the MA in Choral Music Education, establishing the first BBC Singers Conducting Master Class Residency program. She has also served as a tutor for the Choral Conductors’ Training Course for the Association of British Choral Directors which she helped develop and implement throughout the UK. During her tenure in London she was also the Artistic Director and Conductor of the Imperial College Choir and Chamber Choir of the Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine London; both non-audition ensembles made up of students, faculty, staff and alumni who presented three major choral/orchestral concerts each year.
Highlight performances have included the Bach St. John Passion and B Minor Mass, Brahms, Mozart, and Verdi Requiems, Elgar The Dream of Gerontius, Rachmaninoff Vespers, and Fanshawe African Sanctus, as well as premiering a variety of new compositions and chamber works during her eight years of leadership with the choirs. Her work as a movement specialist in the training of choral singers and conductors has created unique opportunities for her to work with choirs and collaborate with conductors from around the world. Her research on enhancing choral performance through movement training has led to the development of a comprehensive choral education philosophy of "BodySinging"; most clearly demonstrated through her work with the Oregon Bach Festival Youth Choral Academy, the St. Olaf Choir, and the American Boychoir. In addition to her work as a conductor, she has also performed professionally as a vocal soloist and chorus member both in London and the United States.
She began her career as a singer and dancer in musical theatre before training as a classical performer and conductor. Her work as a church musician has permeated her singing and conducting work throughout her career, and she continues to serve in her commitment to spirituality in music and the arts as board member for the Hildegard Center for the Arts in Lincoln, Nebraska. She has sung for composers and conductors such as Aaron Copland, Helmuth Rilling, and Mistlav Rostropovich; and has had the opportunity to premiere works by Arvo Pärt, Krystof Penderecki, and a vocal chamber piece by Shostakovich conducted by Rostropovich in Carnegie Hall. She is a member of the Oregon Bach Festival Choir under the direction of Helmuth Rilling, recipients of the Grammy award in 2000 for their performance of CREDO by Penderecki.
She is presently director of the UNL Chamber Singers, and co-artistic director of Lincoln’s newly established adult professional chamber choir ABENDCHOR. Therees holds a Bachelor of Music Honors degree in vocal music education with a minor in dance from Longwood College, Virginia; a Master of Music degree in voice and choral conducting from Colorado State University; and a Doctor of Musical Arts degree in vocal music education and choral conducting from the University of Oregon School of Music.