The University of Chicago Department of Music is home to world-class ensembles in residence who present public concerts at the University and provide coaching and individual instruction to students in the department's performing ensembles and programs. Each year, the GRAMMY-nominated Spektral Quartet presents three concerts and open rehearsals in addition to coaching students in the University orchestras and chamber music program.

In the 2018-19 academic year, the internationally acclaimed vocal ensemble Sweet Honey in the Rock joins the university as the Don Michael Randel Ensemble in Residence. Sweet Honey will be in residence for one week each quarter, working with students in the Music Department's vocal ensembles, leading community workshops and events, and presenting public concerts.

The New Budapest Orpheum Society is an ensemble-in-residence in the Division of the Humanities at the University of Chicago. NBOS presents 1-2 concerts each year, drawing upon a wide range of repertories, many forgotten, others preserved in European archives, all poignantly bearing witness to the great tradition of Jewish cabaret.