Craig Jessop was appointed Music Director and Conductor of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in December 1999, after having served as the Choir’s associate director since 1995.
Before his appointment with the choir, Dr. Jessop was a lieutenant colonel in the US Air Force music programs, where he served as director of the USAF Singing Sergeants in Washington, DC (1980–1987); as commander and conductor of the Band of the US Air Forces in Europe at Ramstein, Germany (1987–1991); and as commander and conductor of the Air Combat Command Heartland of America Band (1991–1995). He has also been music director of the Maryland Choral Society, the Rhineland-Pfalz International Choir of Germany, and the Omaha Symphonic Chorus.
At the Opening Ceremony of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City, Dr. Jessop conducted the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Utah Symphony, working with world-renowned artists Sting and Yo-Yo Ma and composers John Williams and Michael Kamen. In 2003, Dr. Jessop conducted the Choir at the Tanglewood Festival, and prepared the singers for a performance of A German Requiem at that prestigious venue with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Rafael Frübeck de Burgos. In 1999, Dr. Jessop was asked to step in for Robert Shaw to conduct the concert and subsequent recording of Mr. Shaw’s English adaptation of the same piece with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Utah Symphony.
In addition to his work as a conductor, Dr. Jessop has been active as a baritone vocalist, first as a member of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and later with the choirs of Helmuth Rilling and John Rutter and with the Robert Shaw Festival Singers. He is a previous winner of the Metropolitan Opera regional auditions and San Francisco Opera auditions, and has participated in the Merola Opera training program of the San Francisco Opera.