The Los Angeles
Master Chorale

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The Los Angeles Master Chorale is the “the finest-by-far major chorus in America” (Los Angeles Times) and a vibrant cultural treasure. Hailed for its powerful performances, technical precision, and artistic daring, the Chorale is led by Grant Gershon, Kiki & David Gindler Artistic Director; Associate Artistic Director Jenny Wong; and President & CEO Jean Davidson. Its Swan Family Artist-in-Residence is Reena Esmail.

Created by legendary conductor Roger Wagner in 1964, the Chorale is a founding resident company of The Music Center and choir-in-residence at Walt Disney Concert Hall. Chorister positions are highly sought after, and the fully professional choir is a diverse and vocally dynamic group.

The Chorale reaches over 175,000 people a year through its concert series at Walt Disney Concert Hall, its international touring of innovative works, and its performances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic and others.

The Chorale’s discography includes the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s Deutsche Grammophon recording of Mahler’s Symphony No. 8, for which the Chorale won a Best Choral Performance Grammy with the National Children’s Chorus, Los Angeles Children’s Choir and Pacific Chorale. The Chorale released The Sacred Veil by Eric Whitacre on Signum Records in 2020. Under the direction of Grant Gershon, the Chorale has released eight recordings, including national anthems / the little match girl passion by David Lang on Cantaloupe Records. The Chorale is on the soundtracks of many major motion pictures, including Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker and Disney’s Jungle Cruise.

Throughout 2018 and 2019, the Master Chorale toured its production of Lagrime di San Pietro, directed by Peter Sellars, earning rave reviews across the globe. Süddeutsche Zeitung called the 2019 Salzburg Festival performance “painfully beautiful,” while the Sydney Morning Herald praised Lagrime di San Pietro as “stunning … Their voices soared to the heavens.” After the Master Chorale performed in London, The Stage called Lagrime a “balm for the soul.”

Committed to increasing representation in the choral repertoire, the Chorale announced in 2020 that it will reserve at least 50% of each future season for works by composers from historically excluded groups. This commitment to inclusion runs through the entire organization, which recently ratified a five-year plan that commits to improving representation at the staff and board levels, continuing to build a more diverse roster of singers, and reaching a wider audience.

The Chorale’s education programs include Voices Within residencies that encourage students to write and perform their own songs, and an expansive Oratorio Project for high school students. The Chorale also presents an annual High School Choir Festival, which brings teenagers from around the Southland to perform in Walt Disney Concert Hall. In May 2019, the High School Choir Festival celebrated 30 years as one of the longest-running and widest-reaching arts education programs in Southern California. In July 2018, the Chorale presented Big Sing California, the largest group singing event in state history, encompassing a concert in Disney Hall that was broadcast live to venues in five other cities in California and livestreamed online.

The Los Angeles Master Chorale is an independent and innovative professional vocal ensemble that shares the traditional and evolving spectrum of choral music with the widest possible audience. We advance our mission through performance, community education, collaboration, commissioning, and recording.

We envision a world in which choral music is a conduit for belonging, a vehicle for participation in the arts, and a means for understanding and exploring commonalities and differences.

The Los Angeles Master Chorale strives to be a leader in engaging the diverse individuals and communities that make up Los Angeles, our home. Over the next three to five years, the Chorale will focus on using the transformative power of choral music to engage and to inspire more people in Los Angeles, and around the world, with greater impact.


2024/2025 SEASON

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Music to Accompany A Departure

Music to Accompany a Departure Set to Heinrich Schütz’s Musikalische Exequiem

Grant Gershon, conductor
Peter Sellars, director
24 singers, conductor, continuo (gamba and portative organ)

Continuing a decades-long collaboration with Peter Sellars, the Los Angeles Master Chorale announces Music to Accompany a Departure, set to the music of Heinrich Schütz’s Musikalische Exequiem (Funeral Music).

Saying goodbye. Being present. One of the most painful aspects of the pandemic is that countless people have been unable to be with their loved ones in their final days, hours and moments of life. Peter Sellars, Grant Gershon and the singers of the L.A. Master Chorale are creating a very personal ceremony of presence and remembering, through the transfixing music of Heinrich Schütz. His Musikalische Exequien was the original “human” requiem, written for a friend in the language of the people. This intimate and emotional work will be presented as a ritual of leave-taking for our time.

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Lagrime Di San Pietro

Twenty-one singers transform this 75-minute sweeping a cappella Renaissance masterpiece—committed to memory and dramatically staged—into an overwhelmingly emotional performance piece. Set to the poetry of Luigi Tansillo (1510-1568), “I accept responsibility” is the fundamental theme of this work depicting the seven stages of grief that St. Peter experienced after disavowing his knowledge of Jesus Christ on the day of his arrest and prior to his crucifixion.
Sellars translates Lagrime through a contemporary lens, suggesting a powerful allegory that by taking responsibility and facing our past head-on, we can forge a more resolved and fulfilling future.


Photo by: Brian Feinzimer


MTAAD Interview with Peter Sellars & Grant Gershon



" [Music to Accompany A Departure] The result was a spiritual, meditative, and sometimes sad experience. For the first half of about 65 minutes, I sensed that this was a once-in-a-lifetime event...

… It’s so ideal for our times, and the chorale showed off some astounding skills at emoting while singing with plaintive simplicity. Clarity and precise balance were everywhere in evidence, and solo voices had character and warmth. But something strange began to happen up until the end. I drifted. Not that the piece had a soporific effect, but it did feel like I was under the spell of some kind of narcotic, as if being drawn to The Light. What a fascinating experience to have during the final beautifully lit scene, which had the chorus members gathered around a grave to bury someone they held dear. I read that the deceased is represented by bass voices, while angels accompanying it to heaven are represented by the sopranos. Well done. I certainly ended up in heaven.”


Music To Accompany A Departure

“Art that makes you sad yet grateful for every minute of life, as this “Departure” did, is art that rises highest.”

- Los Angeles Times

Music To Accompany A Departure

“Los Angeles Master Chorale Stages an Emotional Masterpiece”

- SF Classical Voice

Lagrime di San Pietro

“ The result was nothing short of remarkable. This was easily one of the great events of this season in Toronto. .”

-Toronto Star


MAAD Project Sheet

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