The Montclair State University Chorale is the core mixed-voice choir of the Cali School. Currently numbering 180 voices, the singers comprise music students majoring in voice performance, music education, instrumental performance, music therapy, composition, as well as non-music majors from other colleges in the University. The somatically based choral pedagogy is designed to enable students to expand and refine their musical, vocal, and choral skills, enabling them to function as independent, flexible, and responsive musicians in their subsequent student and professional lives. The MSU Chorale specializes in performance of symphonic masterworks. They have performed numerous times with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra (NJSO) under the baton of both Neeme Jarve and Jacques LaCombe. Performances include the New York Metropolitan area premiere of Howard Shore’s Academy Award winning score The Lord of the Rings Symphony, the regional premiere of Don McCullough's Let My People Go!, Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and Verdi’s Messa da Requiem. The Chorale’s highly acclaimed performances of Orff’s Carmina Burana were also celebrated with a limited edition CD. In May 2011, the women of the Chorale performed Mahler’s Symphony No. 3 with the NJSO and the American Boy Choir. Other performance highlights include Requiem’s by Fauré and Duruflé, the Poulenc Gloria, Britten’s Saint Nicholas, Vaughan Williams’ Dona Nobis Pacem, and the regional premiere of Robert Aldridge’s Parables for the 2011 Crawford Concert in collaboration with the MSU Symphony Orchestra. Recent performances have included Rutter Gloria, which was recorded and broadcast on NJN television network, and the Verdi Requiem with the NJSO, conducted by Maestro Jacques Lacombe.
The Montclair State University Singers is a mixed-voice elective choir comprising undergraduate and graduate students who are experienced singers and musicians. Students from all schools/colleges in the University in good academic standing may audition. The University Singers performs a wide variety of sacred and secular repertoire, encompassing genres from the Renaissance to the 21st century, with special interest in contemporary composers. The ensemble has premiered multiple important new works, some of which were commissioned for them. They often perform in important venues throughout the area and have toured Central Europe and Russia. The University Singers has also established an exciting performance relationship with composer-artist Meredith Monk. Monk's CD, Songs of Ascension, featuring the University Singers, was nominated in the Producer of the Year category of the 2012 Grammy nominations. Recent season highlights include performances of Mozart’s Requiem and Handel’s Messiah with the NJSO under the baton of Maestro Jacques Lacombe, a Mid-Atlantic tour of the USA, and collaboration with the esteemed American composer Morten Lauridsenduring his 2013 MSU residency.
MSU Vocal Accord is a 24-voice chamber choir comprising students drawn from the membership of University Singers. An extracurricular project choir, Vocal Accord made its debut performance in the Cali School's Leshowitz Recital Hall in 2010. In 2012 Vocal Accord toured Europe giving performances in Austria (Vienna, Gleisdorf, Graz, & Ottendorf) and Italy (Venice), and were also artists-in-residence at the University of the Performing Arts (Graz). Vocal Accord performs repertoire ranging from traditional and classical works to new works by professional composers and student winners of the Cali Choral Composition Competition. They perform on campus and at venues throughout the tri-state area, including Carnegie Hall's Weill Auditorium. In 2014 Vocal Accord sang "Rejoice in the Lamb" while dancers from the Richard Alston Dance Company performed at the 10th anniversary gala for MSU's Kasser Theater. This performance led to the opportunity to perform in 2015 in London for the Alston dance company's 20th season at Sadler's Wells.
Lux Aurumque - Eric Whitacre (2011: University Singers, Heather J. Buchanan, conductor)