Home

A-Z Index  |  Site Map  

Academics

A-Z Index  |  Site Map   icons Printer-friendly version Email this page

Karen Cooksey

Assistant Professor of Music

Mitchell Fine Arts 207
Transylvania University
300 North Broadway
Lexington, KY 40508-1797

Phone: (859) 281-3546
e-mail Karen Cooksey


Karen Cooksey brings to her students the experiences and perspectives of one who has conducted a broad range of ensembles – from choral, instrumental and professional, to church, community and academic.

For five seasons, she served as the Associate Chorus Master at Los Angeles Opera. She was first assistant conductor for the 2010 world premiere of Daniel Catán's critically and publicly acclaimed opera Il Postino featuring the legendary Plácido Domingo. In that same year, Cooksey conducted Morton Subotnick's "The Key to Songs" for chamber ensemble and electronics as part of the People Inside Electronics concert series. In 2012, she made her New York debut guest conducting the Young People's Chorus of New York City in Carnegie Hall's Zankel Hall and the 92nd Street Y's Kaufmann Hall.

Karen Cooksey begins her role at Transylvania as assistant professor/director of choral activities following a summer participating as an adjudicator and presenter for the China International Chorus Festival and the IFCM World Youth Choral Education Conference in Beijing, as well as the IFCM World Choral Symposium in Seoul.

But there is an additional dimension to the music performance vision of this recent arrival from Los Angeles. "I think there is room in music for social justice, so if I can find the opportunity to do projects like that, I will." Cooksey is interested in focusing on pieces that "reflect on poverty and a Good Samaritan ideal."

Principal teachers

  • William Dehning
  • Magen Solomon
  • Larry Livingston
  • Jan Harrington
  • John Poole
  • Eric Stark
  • Stanley DeRusha
  • Robert Grechesky

Personal website: karencooksey.com


Want to know more about Transylvania's music program?

Academic history

Courses taught

Professional memberships

Areas of specialization

Awards and honors

Academic history

  • University of Southern California (DMA Choral Conducting)
  • Indiana University (MM Choral Conducting)
  • Butler University (BA summa cum laude Music and Philosophy)

Courses taught

  • Transylvania Choir
  • Pioneer Voices Men’s Chorus
  • Music Appreciation
  • Music History

Professional memberships

  • American Choral Directors Association (President, Butler University ACDA Chapter, 1997–2000)
  • Chorus America
  • College Music Society
  • Conductors Guild
  • International Federation of Choral Music
  • National Association for Music Education
  • National Collegiate Chorus Organization
  • Performing Arts Medicine Association

Areas of specialization

  • The requiem genre in France from the mid-1800s to the mid-1900s, particularly the requiems of Maurice Duruflé and Gabriel Fauré
  • Body health for performers

Awards and honors

  • Quarterfinalist, Eric Ericson Award, Uppsala and Stockholm (2003 and 2009)
  • Second place overall and awards for Best Interpretation of a Modern Work and Best Female Conductor, 3rd Directors, Vienna (2004)
  • Finalist, ACDA Student Conducting Awards (1999)


 List of Faculty »
Contact Us | Maps & Directions | Feedback | © 2003-2014 Transylvania University. All rights reserved.

Transylvania University admits students regardless of age, race, color, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status, national origin, or any other classification protected by federal or state law or local ordinance.