Whitney Cairns holds a Master of Music degree in Choral Conducting from the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester where she served as conductor for the Repertory Singers and the Women’s Chorus. Her Bachelor of Science degree in K-12 Music Education is from the Pennsylvania State University. She has studied conducting under Lynn Drafall, Susan Conkling, Lone Larsen, Joseph Flummerfelt, and William Weinert. Most recently Mrs. Cairns has studied with Doreen Rao, Mandy Miller, Sandra Snow, and Lee Kesselman. In August 2017, Mrs. Cairns was awarded the honor of Artist Teacher through the Institute for Choral Music Education.
Mrs. Cairns is an experienced teacher, having taught secondary education in Pennsylvania and at the Rochester School of the Arts in New York, as well as elementary education at St. Louis’s Community Education Center. She currently serves as a vocal music teacher in the Parkway School District. 2022 marks the beginning of her twelfth artistic season as Director of the Chorale for the St. Louis Children’s Choirs, where she has premiered works by Amy Bernon, Zachary Cairns, and Jim Papoulis. Active as a guest conductor and clinician, Mrs. Cairns has appeared with the University of Missouri - St. Louis’ Acappellooza Festival and has guest-conducted the Kirkwood Children’s Chorale, the Fort Zumwalt Middle School Choral Festival, and the Metro 8 Elementary Honors Choir. In 2019, Mrs. Cairns was invited to give multiple presentations at the Missouri Music Educators’ Association State Conference. Mrs. Cairns has served as Lecturer of Ear Training and Aural Skills at the University of Missouri - St. Louis since 2011. She directs the Children’s Choir at Central Presbyterian Church. She, her husband, and their two children reside in St. Charles.