Founded in 2002 by its director James Burritt, Vocális Chamber Choir is a select ensemble of dedicated professionals based in Buffalo, New York. Vocális is committed to performing great a cappella music of all eras, and to cultivating an awareness of the art of choral singing. Comprising 23 voices, the choir strives to inspire, educate and enlighten our audiences through an intimate and moving concert experience. Now in its 15th season, Vocális has established itself as one of the finest choral ensembles in New York.
Vocális’ programming is wide-ranging and diverse, featuring both great choral masterpieces and lesser-known gems from throughout the ages, along with exciting contemporary works such as James MacMillan’s “Cantos Sagrados.” In 2011-12, Vocális’ 10th Anniversary Season, a Spotlight WNY concert included compositions from our region’s thriving artistic community. The season ended with Triumph and Majesty, featuring Haydn’s “Lord Nelson Mass,” Handel’s Coronation Anthem “Zadok the Priest,” and the world premiere of “Venite Laudemus Dominum” by English composer Andrew Smith, commissioned by Vocális in celebration of its first 10 years.
The 2012-13 season included a collaboration on the music of Monteverdi and Vivaldi with Ars Nova Chamber Orchestra, the festive annual Christmas concert in the glorious acoustic of the Karpeles Manuscript Museum in Buffalo, and a performance on the inaugural concert series for Buffalo State College’s new recital hall. Our thrilling season finale featured music for string orchestra and choir with members of the Buffalo Philharmonic, in works by Bach and Beethoven, and the Western New York premiere of Tarik O’Regan’s moving “Triptych.”
Highlights of the 2013-14 season included a concert tour to Cleveland, a collaboration with the Western New York Chamber Orchestra presenting the music of Mozart and Rutter, and a summer tour of England, with engagements at Southwark Cathedral, Grosvenor Chapel, the Old Royal Naval College Chapel, Ely Cathedral, and the Cambridge Summer Music Festival.
Building on the success of its England tour, the choir has attracted its largest audiences ever for its growing subscription series. Continuing its tradition of collaboration, Vocális mentored and performed with the Buffalo State and Canisius College choirs, and hosted internationally renowned choral composer Ola Gjeilo in a concert of his music. Most recently, the choir continued its diverse programming with performances of Cary Ratcliff’s “Ode to Common Things,” under the direction of the Grammy nominated composer.
Vocális members are music educators, church musicians, and other talented professionals from Buffalo, and beyond who share a love for quality choral performance.
OUR BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Formed in 2007 to provide administrative guidance, our active volunteer board is committed to furthering Vocális’ mission.
Damon Ayer, President
David Frieder, Vice President
Estelle Siener, Secretary
Christopher Burritt, Treasurer
James Burritt William Ferguson
Robert J. Meisner, DDS
Graphic design by Barb Cushing
John F. Herbert
Barbara J. Hole
Anne Altenburg Moot
Nancy Austin Stecker
Sarar G. Carney
Mary Keough Dylik