Melinda O'Neal

  • Professor of Music, Emerita

  • Former Conductor, Handel Society and Chamber Singers

Conductor Melinda O'Neal is professor emerita of music at Dartmouth College where she taught courses and conducted choral ensembles (1979-2018). A specialist in performing major choral-orchestral works from Bach and Handel to Berlioz, Brahms and John Adams, she also concentrates on renaissance vocal music and performing with historical instrument ensembles. 

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HB 6187


  • B.M.E. Florida State University
  • M.M. Indiana University
  • D.M. Indiana University

Selected Publications

  • Book: Experiencing Berlioz: A Listener's Companion, Rowman & Littlefield (2018).

    Forward: A History of the Handel Choir of Baltimore by Carl B. Schmidt. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books (2015).

    Essay: "Handel's Compassion and Messiah: An Oratorio" for hand-print folio of Messiah libretto. Baltimore: Hill Press (2012).

    Chapter: "Passion and Authenticity: A Conversation with Marin Alsop" in Wisdom, Wit and Will: Women Choral Conductors on Their Art, ed. Joan Catoni Conlon. Chicago: GIA Publications (2009).

    Chapter: "Coming to Terms with Historical Performance Practices," in Up Front!: Becoming the Complete Choral Conductor, ed. Guy Webb. Boston: ECS Publications (1994).

Selected Works & Activities

Note: For a representative listing of choral and choral-orchestral repertoire conducted in concert and prepared as chorus master, see my CV or personal website.

Virtual Talk: "L'enfance du Christ, Berlioz's Last Choral-Orchestral Work" for Handel Choir of Baltimore (November 2020).

Lecture: "Mélodies Fantastiques! — Mystique and Narrative in Berlioz's Vocal Music" presented for Opera Prelude, Cadogan Hall, London, UK (November 2019).

Lecture: "Assertiveness, Stamina, Confidence" for Women in Western Music class, Towson University, Towson, MD (April 2014). 

Dartmouth Course Design: Brahms, Berlioz and the Romantic Imagination (Fall 2013).

Lecture and Reading Session: "Library of Congress American Music 1870-1923," Eastern Division of the American Choral Conductors Association Conference, Philadelphia, PA (February 2010). 

Conference Presentation: "Preparing and Performing Berlioz's Choral Music," Berlioz Society, London, UK (November 2009).