Choral Ensembles

Choral_Ensembles

Under the leadership of James Kallembach, Director of Choral Activities, and Mollie Stone, Assistant Director of Choral Activities, the four choral ensembles at the University of Chicago are the University Chorus, the Motet Choir, the Women's Ensemble, and Rockefeller Chapel Choir. These four ensembles offer a variety of repertoire, ensemble sizes, and concert formats.  There is one set of auditions, held at the beginning of the academic year, for membership in any of these groups.  Returning musicians are required to re-audition every season.  New members can sometimes be accommodated mid-year in the University Chorus by special audition, but singers are strongly encouraged to participate throughout the season.

University Chorus  •  James Kallembach, Director; Mollie Stone, Assistant Director

The University Chorus is the largest vocal ensemble on campus.  Its season includes an annual production of Handel’s Messiah as well as presentations of such choral masterworks as Berlioz’s Roméo et Juliette, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, and Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem, most often presented in collaboration with the University Symphony Orchestra.  Among its 100 to 120 members are undergraduates, graduate students, faculty and staff members, and singers from the Hyde Park and University community.  The result is a wonderfully diverse group of vocalists, collaborating in performances of great monuments of the literature.  The University Chorus presents three to four concerts per season, generally culminating in a festive year-end performance with the combined choirs and the University Symphony Orchestra.

2015-2016 Concert Dates:

  • Saturday, October 24 at 3:00 pm, Rockfeller Chapel: Parent's Weekend Choral Showcase
  • Sunday, December 6 at 3:00 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Handel’s Messiah
  • Sunday, March 6 at 3:00 pm, Logan Penthouse: Winter Choral Concert, with University Chorus and Women's Ensemble
  • Saturday, May 28 at 7:30 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Spring Choral Union Concert, including all Department of Music choral ensembles

Rehearsals:

  • Tuesdays, 7:30-9:30 pm, Fulton Recital Hall (Autumn Quarter only;  James Kallembach, conductor)
  • Mondays, 7:30-9:30 pm, Fulton Recital Hall (Winter and Spring Quarters;  Mollie Stone, conductor)
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Motet Choir  •  James Kallembach, Director

As the premier undergraduate choral ensemble at the University of Chicago, the Motet Choir accepts 28-36 singers each year.  Concentrating on a cappella masterworks of all periods, this polished vocal ensemble specializes in music of the Renaissance, and also performs historically and culturally diverse repertoire ranging from Gregorian chant to gospel standards.  The Motet Choir presents at least three major concerts per year (one each quarter), and sings at convocations and special events on campus and throughout the Chicago area.  The ensemble goes on tour every second year, often during the University’s winter or spring break.  December 2015 tour plans include performances in Pittsburgh, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Boston, and New York.

2015-2016 Concert Dates:

  • Saturday, October 24 at 3:00 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Parents’ Weekend Choral Showcase Concert
  • Sunday, November 22 at 3:00 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Concert with University Chamber Orchestra, featuring Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass
  • Friday, January 15 (time TBD), Harper Library: Homecoming Concert 
  • Saturday, May 28 at 7:30 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Spring Choral Union Concert, including all Department of Music choral ensembles

Rehearsals:

  • Mondays, 4:30-6:00pm, Bond Chapel
  • Wednesdays, 4:30-6:30pm, Logan Penthouse
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Women's Ensemble • Mollie Stone, Director

The Women’s Ensemble is made up primarily of undergraduate women at the University of Chicago.  The group explores classical repertoire from the Medieval era up through the present day, and music from polyphonic singing traditions across the world – including those of South Africa, Zimbabwe, the Republic of Georgia, Croatia, Bulgaria, Sweden, Norway – as well as a variety of American singing traditions.  Through its diverse repertoire, the Women’s Ensemble strives to bring women’s voices together in powerful ways.  Early in 2015 the Women’s Ensemble spearheaded the establishment of an annual collegiate women’s choral festival.  The group looks forward to finding more ways to engage with the community at large.

2015-2016 Concert Dates:

  • Saturday, October 24 at 3:00 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Parents’ Weekend Choral Showcase Concert
  • Sunday, November 15 at 7:30 pm, Bond Chapel: Women’s Ensemble and Artemisia
  • Sunday, March 6 at 3:00 pm, Logan Performance Hall: Winter Choral Concert, with Women’s Ensemble and University Chorus
  • Sunday, May 15 at 7:30 pm, Rockefeller Chapel
  • Saturday, May 28 at 7:30 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Spring Choral Union Concert, including all Department of Music choral ensembles

Rehearsals: 

  • Mondays, 6:00-7:30 pm, Fulton Hall
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Rockefeller Chapel Choir  •  James Kallembach, Director

The Chapel Choir and its professional subset, the Decani, sing at Sunday services and festivals throughout the academic year, as well as in Rockefeller’s signature Quire & Place concert series, which presents major works from the entire historical canon, lesser-known gems, and the premières of new work by distinguished composers.  The choir’s members come from diverse spiritual and cultural backgrounds, sharing the rich musical experience of singing an array of choral music in the unique religious and cultural contexts of a magnificent Chapel to which students of all world traditions are drawn.

2015-2016 Concert Dates:

  • Sunday, November 8 at 3:00 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Quire & Place #1
  • Saturday, February 27 at 7:30 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Quire & Place #2
  • Sunday, March 20 at 3:00 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Quire & Place #3
  • Saturday, April 30 at 7:30 pm, Rockefeller Chapel: Quire & Place #4

Rehearsals: 

  • Thursdays, 7:00-9:30 pm, Rockefeller Chapel
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