The Minnesota Chorale, named principal chorus of the Minnesota Orchestra in 2004, has sung with the Orchestra for more than four decades. Founded in 1972 and led since 1995 by artistic director Kathy Saltzman Romey, the Chorale is Minnesota’s preeminent symphonic chorus and ranks among the foremost professional choruses in the United States. Best known for its work with the two major orchestras of the Twin Cities, the ensemble is equally dedicated to programs that build and enrich community. A seasoned artistic partner, the Chorale continues to explore new artistic directions and collaborative opportunities, while earning the highest critical acclaim for its work on the concert stage.
The Chorale will collaborate this season with the Orchestra in numerous programs, including the November world premiere of Sebastian Currier’s RE-FORMATION and the Orchestra’s first-ever performances at Orchestra Hall of Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, as well as February performances of the Fauré Requiem. In June, the Chorale joins the Orchestra and conductor Andrew Litton for two concerts featuring Walton’s Belshazzar’s Feast and Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms, the latter commemorating the 100th anniversary of Bernstein’s birth.
The Minnesota Chorale first appeared with the Minnesota Orchestra in a 1972 performance of Gian Carlo Menotti’s Amahl and the Night Visitors, conducted by Henry Charles Smith. Since then, the Chorale has collaborated regularly with the Orchestra in such masterworks as Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, Handel’s Messiah and Verdi’s Requiem, and in presenting great modern works including Michael Tippett’s A Child of our Time, Aaron Jay Kernis’ Garden of Light and Leonard Bernstein’s Mass. In 2002 the Orchestra and Chorale premiered Sir John Tavener’s Ikon of Eros and recorded it on the Reference label. The Chorale is featured on the Orchestra’s 2006 BIS recording of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, a performance which drew critical acclaim and a Grammy nomination for Best Orchestral Performance, and on the 2008 CD release of Stephen Paulus’ oratorio To Be Certain of the Dawn, recorded by Vänskä and the Orchestra on the BIS label.
Now comprising ensembles for singers from ages 8 to 80-plus, the Minnesota Chorale is a multi-generational umbrella organization. Among the Chorale’s initiatives are the acclaimed Bridges program, the Minneapolis Youth Chorus, Men in Music for high-school boys and InChoir for adults.
Highlights of the Minnesota Chorale’s performance history include three seasons as chorus-in-residence at the Aspen Music Festival, concerts in Mexico City with the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional de Mexico, recordings of Haydn’s The Creation and The Seasons with the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, representing the United States at the America Cantat III international choral festival in Venezuela, and premiering and recording Janika Vandervelde’s Adventures of the Black Dot, a landmark choral storybook for children.
For more information, visit mnchorale.org.