Natalie Shaffer, is currently an ABD D.M.A. candidate in Conducting from West Virginia University, who earned M.M. degrees in Conducting and Musicology from WVU after teaching choir and general music in the public school systems of Monongalia County, Marion County, and Upshur County (WV). Prior to beginning her teaching career, Ms. Shaffer obtained her Bachelor of Music Education from West Virginia Wesleyan College.
Ms. Shaffer’s research centers the practice of collaborative social justice through choral musicking and resulted in her position as Artistic Director with the Voices of Hope, a community choir that welcomes individuals experiencing homelessness, issues related to addiction and alcoholism, and their supporters. Ms. Shaffer contributed a chapter about her experiences with this group for WVU Press’s 2020 publication Opioid Aesthetics: Expressive Culture in an Age of Addiction.
Ms. Shaffer is an avid performer, guest clinician, and presenter whose practices include intentional anti-racist work, the concept of de-centering, and creating welcoming spaces in the music classroom. She is a co-founder and charter member of Masestri Vocale Treble, a semi-professional choir whose members include performers, educators, and conductors from across the Mountain State. An active member of the West Virginia chapter of the American Choral Directors Association, Ms. Shaffer serves as both World Music and Cultures Chair and Social Justice Chair. She has recently served as the Director of Music Ministry at Avery United Methodist Church in Morgantown, WV, Graduate Assistant of Choirs and Adjunct Professor of Music at West Virginia University, Director of Choirs and Vocal Music at Glenville State College in WV, and Interim Director of Choral Activities at Washington and Jefferson College in PA.
She recently moved to Abingdon, Virginia with her adopted fur child Trevor Moon and looks forward to building new relationships at Emory & Henry College and in the surrounding communities.