Stories & Results

MEET OUR MUSIC MAKERS: Ensemble Singer Robert C. Smith Is Excited About ‘Unknown’ in Dreams of the Fallen

The VocalEssence Chorus is an exceptional group of 90 talented, committed singers from many walks of life—doctors, lawyers, nurses, educators, homemakers, business people and others—most with college-level or higher training in classical music and voice. Our 32-voice professional choir, the VocalEssence Ensemble Singers, is known as one of Minnesota’s most highly trained and experienced group…  Read More

VocalEssence Vintage Voices Participants Find New Program ‘Energizing,’ ‘Inclusive,’ ‘Validating’ and ‘Beautiful’

A new VocalEssence program is working wonders for senior singers and their communities! Vintage Voices, which integrates the arts into the lives of older adults by creating choirs in assisted living communities and senior centers, has inspired older adults at Ecumen Seasons at Maplewood (shown above in their spring concert video), Sabathani Community Center Senior…  Read More

VocalEssence Adds WITNESS Teaching Artists to School Program Roster

The VocalEssence WITNESS School Program offers partner schools the opportunity for students to interact with one of our WITNESS Teaching Artists, who explore the yearly program theme through their artistic discipline. Teaching Artists create an integrative academic experience for students combining the study of African American culture with art, music, social studies, literature, character building…  Read More

River Songs and Tales with Mark Twain: Alexandria Tour Delights Onstage and Off

From the full houses for six performances June 23-28, 2015, to relaxation on the water and community engagement, the River Songs and Tales with Mark Twain: Alexandria Tour offered the VocalEssence Ensemble Singers a wonderful time in residence at Theatre L’Homme Dieu in Alexandria, Minnesota. The Star Tribune published an in-depth article on the theater…  Read More

Ensemble Singers Engage at Lyngblomsten Mid-Summer Festival

Members of the VocalEssence Ensemble Singers and Magnum Chorum, led by guest conductor Mark Stover, artistic director of Magnum Chorum, engaged the audience with  “Blessed Assurance” during the sing-along portion of their performance at Lyngblomsten Mid-Summer Festival in St. Paul on Saturday, July 11, 2015.  The performance and sing-along of hymns, spirituals and choral classics…  Read More

DONOR SPOTLIGHT: Judy Drobeck Is Paying It Forward

For just about as long she can remember, Judy Drobeck has been singing. It started as it does for many children, “singing rounds and part songs with my family as we rode in the car or did the dishes—as early as 2 or 3 years old,” according to Judy. “My older sisters had learned some…  Read More

VocalEssence Rocks TCF with the Rolling Stones

VocalEssence performed with the Rolling Stones on stage during their one-night-only performance June 3 at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, a stop on the 15-city North American ZIP CODE Tour. VocalEssence Artistic Director and Founder Philip Brunelle and Associate Conductor Phillip Shoultz both conducted. “It was an amazing experience,” Philip Brunelle told MPR News, when…  Read More

‘The Radio Hour’ Video Gets National Debut

The VocalEssence production of The Radio Hour snagged a national debut in May on American Public Media’s Whether you missed the Midwest premiere performance in March or want to enjoy it all over again, take a look at this video of the 40-minute choral opera by composer Jake Heggie and librettist Gene Scheer. The VocalEssence…  Read More

VocalEssence Vintage Voices Choir Concerts Are a Big Success

After 12 weeks of rehearsals, the VocalEssence Vintage Voices choirs at Sabathani Community Center Senior Center (shown in the video above), Open Circle at Heritage Park Senior Services Center and Ecumen Seasons at Maplewood performed concerts at their respective locations; the concerts were free and open to the public with a reception following. All were…  Read More

VocalEssence Celebrates the American Composers Forum’s 40th Anniversary with Premiere of Arnesen’s ‘Child of Song’

Listen to the VocalEssence Ensemble Singers, conducted by Philip Brunelle, performing “Child of Song” by Kim André Arnesen, dedicated to the memory of Stephen Paulus. If you want to hear it live, they will premiere the piece tonight at the American Composers Forum 40th Anniversary Celebration. VocalEssence will also perform “Home” by Libby Larsen. The two…  Read More

And the Winners Are … Four Chosen for VocalEssence ReMix Composer Mentorships

Four talented, emerging composers/songwriters have been selected to have a six-month one-on-one composer mentorship through VocalEssence ReMix as they each write a choral work. Each has been paired with a Composer Mentor, and on Saturday, June 6, they will gather for a One-Day Summer Workshop where they will meet with VocalEssence Artistic Director and Founder Philip Brunelle, their…  Read More