VOICES was formed in 1981 as the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Community Chorus and renamed the Chapel Hill Community Chorus in 1996. In 2011, it became VoicesChapelHill to encompass VOICES (a symphonic chorus of 120), CANTARI (a select ensemble of 30 formed in 2006), and Summer Voices (about 60).
Voices currently presents five programs a year (two by VOICES and three by CANTARI, along with a summer concert or international tour. In its 38 seasons, Voices has had five Artistic Directors: Victor Recondo (1981-88), Jeffrey Johnson (1989-92), Carl Stam (1993-2000), Sue Klausmeyer (2001-18), and Stephen Futrell (appointed 6/2018).
Voices is an auditioned chorus, performing repertoire from classical to modern periods with contracted instrumentalists and soloists. Past performances include Orff’s “Carmina Burana,” McCartney’s “Ecce Cor Meum,” Mozart’s “Requiem,” Dvorak’s “Mass in D Major,” RV Williams’ “Dona Nobis Pacem,” and selections from “Messiah: A Joyful Celebration.”
Voices has commissioned or premiered such new choral works as Gwyneth Walker’s “Together in Song” (ECS Publishing-2006) and Steve Dobrogosz’ (Sweden) “My Rose: A Shakespeare Oratorio.” Concerts have spotlighted such regional composers as Dan Locklair (Greensboro) and Kevin Johnson (Atlanta).
Voices has collaborated with local youth groups (Chapel Hill High School Chamber Choir and Sisters’ Voices Girls’ Choir) and led the four-choir Requiem concert at Duke Chapel in response to the 9/11 tragedy. Voices programs have received grants from the Orange County Arts Commission, the Strowd Roses and Mary Duke Biddle Foundations, and generous local donors.