Collin Whitfield's compositions have been described by librettist Nicholas Giardini as "beautiful, rapturous and unabashedly romantic, without any of the failings that so often accompany these qualities." He is a recipient of the 2019 James Highsmith Award from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music for his orchestral work, Eclipse. It received its world premiere by members of the Berkeley Symphony in January 2020. In 2018, his setting of Emily Dickinson’s Because I could not stop for Death for SATB accompanied chorus was selected as the winning piece for the annual ACDA Choral Composition Competition at Central Michigan University.
Collin’s technical versatility and experience as a pianist and organist have earned him numerous accolades. Vance George, SF Symphony Chorus Director Emeritus, remarked of Collin’s accompanying: "in all my years spent with the Verdi Requiem, I've never heard anyone play it better." He was a recipient of the 2017-18 Tacoma American Guild of Organists (AGO) Scholarship as well as the Kent S. Dennis Memorial Scholarship in 2020.
Collin has been privileged to accompany the Berkeley Community Chorus and Orchestra under the direction of Ming Luke, as well as Chora Nova and the California Bach Society—both under the direction of Dr. Paul Flight. He has also played under the baton of maestro Ragnar Bohlin, Grammy-winning Director of the San Francisco Symphony Chorus. He remains an active accompanist in the Tri-Cities region of Michigan, where he has accompanied for the Saginaw Choral Society, the Saginaw Arts & Sciences Academy, high school choir and band festivals, and transformative community projects, such as Lamb of God Midland. The latter project, Lamb of God, also featured Collin as tenor soloist in 2019 at the Midland Center for the Arts. Finally, Collin enjoys collaborating on recitals with his wife, soprano Erin Whitfield.
Since 2018, Collin has served as Director of Music Ministries at First Presbyterian Church of Saginaw. He holds a Master of Music degree in Organ Performance from Central Michigan University, where he studied with Steven Egler. He received his Bachelor of Music degree in Composition at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where he studied with notable composers David Conte and Mason Bates.