Since its founding, the Choral Division of the School of Music has been one of America’s most important centers for the choral art. Building on this rich legacy, the division pursues two parallel missions: performing beautiful choral music and mentoring tomorrow’s choral leaders. Concerts by the University’s vocal ensembles demonstrate the highest level of artistry and professionalism, in an unusually diverse range of repertoire from Gregorian chant to commissions of new works. Our choirs regularly appear at regional and national choral conventions, tour nationally and internationally, and frequently collaborate with the University of Illinois Symphony Orchestra, Champaign-Urbana Symphony Orchestra, and Sinfonia da Camera, and in staged productions with the Lyric Theatre of Illinois.
Our graduate program in Choral Music, founded in 1960 by Harold Decker as the nation’s first choral DMA program, offers a comprehensive curriculum designed to help each student grow as both artist and scholar. Conducting is taught in seminars and weekly private lessons, and students have significant podium time with choral ensembles to hone their craft. Graduate students pursue coursework in choral literature, musicology, and performance practice, along with applied training in voice and orchestral conducting. As part of a world-renowned research university, the School of Music faculty offers first-rate instruction, and student work is supported by one of the nation’s most comprehensive performing arts libraries. Graduates of the program include many of the most influential leaders in the field, including Kenneth Jennings, Joseph Flummerfelt, Chester Alwes, Anton Armstrong, Andre Thomas, Donald Nally, and Craig Hella Johnson.
Choral Ensembles of the School of Music with Audition Information