Allen Hightower is a Professor of Music at Luther College, where he serves as conductor of the renowned Nordic Choir and Artistic Director of Christmas at Luther. As Luther's Director of Choral Activities, he gives leadership to a choral program that includes four conductors, six choirs, and over 500 singers.
Prior to joining the faculty at Luther, Dr. Hightower served as Professor of Music and Director of Choral Activities at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. During his tenure, the SHSU Chorale performed for the 2007 National Convention of the American Choral Directors Association, the 2010 Southwestern Division of ACDA, and the 2003, 2006, and 2010 conventions of the Texas Music Educators Association.
Before joining the faculty at Sam Houston, Allen served on the faculty of California State University, Long Beach, conducting the CSULB Chamber Singers. His high school teaching experience includes teaching at Klein High School in Houston, Texas and at Odessa Permian High School. Under Allen’s direction, the Permian High School Kantorei performed for the 1996 Texas Music Educators Association convention.
From 2005-2010 Allen was music director of the Houston Masterworks Chorus, Houston’s largest independent symphonic chorus. A life-long church musician, Dr. Hightower has served Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, and Congregational churches in Texas and California. He has served as the Duesenberg Concert Choir Chair for the Lutheran Summer Music Academy and Festival in the summers of 2007, 2011, and 2013.
Allen holds degrees from Sam Houston State University, Baylor University, the Eastman School of Music, and UCLA. He was the first-prize winner in the graduate division of the ACDA Conducting Competition in 1997. From 1997-2000 he served as conducting intern with the Los Angeles Master Chorale.
Performing and teaching opportunities take him throughout the United States. Recent collegiate residencies have included invitations from The University of Alabama, Colorado State University, The VanderCook College of Music, and Pepperdine University.
Allen is married to soprano, Dr. Kristin Hightower. They reside in Decorah, Iowa with their daughters Caroline and Julianne.