A 2018 study by Chorus America found that over 54 million Americans participate in choral groups. While there is not a direct correlation between one’s involvement in a chorus leading to a happier life, it does show that such groups foster a strong sense of community.
Here’s a list of several choirs with such communities that share a love of music and entertain audiences across the Denver metro area.
Choir League is a social singing club geared toward young professionals that meets once a week in a local bar, restaurant, or business for rehearsal and a happy hour. In the fall of 2018, founder Katy Lushman launched Choir League to meet the needs of millennials who once participated in high school and collegiate choral programs.
For nearly 50 years, the Colorado Children’s Chorale has performed pieces ranging from fully staged opera and musical theater to standard choral compositions in classical, folk, and popular traditions. Through its performance and education programs, the Chorale provides an engaging, disciplined, and nurturing environment for nearly 400 children annually. Children involved receive performance and music training as well as the skills, experiences and confidence to succeed wherever their lives may take them.
The choir, founded in 1976, is one of the most dynamic influences in the Colorado music scene. The Colorado Choir is a nonprofit organization whose 60- to 85-member ensemble has performed frequently with the Denver Symphony Orchestra. Celebrating its 44th season, the choir continues to be an important part of the community by providing classical choral literature through its concerts and other public appearances.
The Colorado Hebrew Chorale and Kol Nashim, the women’s choir of the Chorale, are both non-auditioned community choirs that rehearse at the Hebrew Educational Alliance in Denver. Both choirs are made up of a variety of members and backgrounds including Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, Reconstructionist, Unaffiliated and non-Jewish.
The Denver Gay Men’s Chorus (DGMC) has been an LGBTQ+ catalyst for change through musical excellence since its founding in 1982. With more than 300 concerts during its history, this 140-member ensemble is now recognized as the premier gay performing arts organization in the Rocky Mountain Region. This year the DGMC celebrates its 40th anniversary. Read more about the community this chorus provides for its members and their anniversary concert this summer here.
The Denver Women’s Chorus (DWC) is a multigenerational, trans- and nonbinary-inclusive treble chorus dedicated to musical excellence, building community, and advocating for social justice. As a sister chorus to the Denver Gay Men’s Chorus, the DWC also owes its existence to a group of singers who risked their livelihoods to form a chorus that became both a safe place for its members and an outlet for musical expression.
Formed in 1997, Kantorei has established itself as one of the nation’s premier choral ensembles. The Denver-based choir is comprised of volunteer singers under the direction of Artistic Director Joel M. Rinsema. The group has released two recordings, “Sing, Wearing the Sky” in 2020 and “Infinity: Choral Works of Kim André Arnesen” in 2018, both of which were featured on best-selling lists on iTunes.
With over 100 members of all ages and backgrounds, Sound of the Rockies (SOR) is regarded as the top men’s a cappella chorus in the Rocky Mountain Region and one of the four best barbershop choruses in the world. SOR produces three major concerts each year, in March, June, and December at the University of Denver’s Newman Center for Performing Arts. Additionally, the entire ensemble and several popular quartets within the larger group perform at community and private events, festivals, and churches throughout the Denver area.
St. Martin’s Chamber Choir seeks to touch the soul by curating an exquisite choral experience. Directed by founder and Artistic Director Timothy J. Krueger, the choir has delighted Colorado audiences for over 20 years with beloved choral works and the unearthing of forgotten hidden historical gems.
Since 1978, Voices West has had a long tradition of choral excellence and creative and engaging concert programming for audiences along the front range. The 65-member roster performs music from the Renaissance to the 21st century and concerts in a variety of styles and idioms. Upcoming events include What a Feeling! A totally retro 80s concert featuring solo and ensemble performances and Beethoven Celebration Symphony No.9 & Choral Fantasy with Denver Philharmonic.