• Vancouver Chamber Choir (4632)

About Us

The Vancouver Chamber Choir is one of Canada’s national treasures, an outstanding professional vocal ensemble noted for its diverse repertoire and performing excellence.

The Choir has been performing to audiences at home in Vancouver and on tour across Canada since it was formed in 1971 by conductor Jon Washburn. International excursions have taken the Vancouver Chamber Choir to the USA, Mexico, Japan, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Finland, France, Germany, the Czech Republic, Russia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Ukraine.

Honoured with the Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence by Chorus America, the Vancouver Chamber Choir has to its credit countless performances and broadcasts, 32 recordings and numerous awards. Foremost supporters of Canadian music, Jon Washburn and the Choir have commissioned and premiered more than 250 Canadian choral compositions. Over the years they have sung over 3,000 performances of 350 pieces by 120 Canadian composers in addition to their extensive international repertoire.

The Choir’s award-winning educational programs include the National Conductors’ Symposium for advanced choral conductors, Interplay interactive workshops for choral composers, Focus! professional development program for student singers, OnSite visitations for school choirs, the biennial Young Composers’ Competition, and many on-tour workshops and residencies.

Artistic Director Jon Washburn

Jon Washburn

Jon Washburn is the longtime Conductor and Artistic Director of the Vancouver Chamber Choir. Well known internationally for his mastery of choral technique and interpretation, he travels widely as guest conductor, lecturer, clinician and master teacher. He is also an active composer, arranger and editor and has had many compositions published, performed and recorded around the world.

In 2001 Mr. Washburn was named a Member of the Order of Canada (the nation’s highest civilian honour) and in 2002 received Queen Elizabeth’s Golden Jubilee Medal for his lifetime contribution to Canadian choral art. Mr. Washburn received a Distinguished Service Award from the Association of Canadian Choral Conductors in the spring of 1996 and the Louis Botto Award from Chorus America in June 2000, in recognition of “innovative and entrepreneurial spirit in the development of a professional choral ensemble of exceptional quality.” He was given the Friends of Canadian Music Award 2000 by the Canadian Music Centre (CMC) and the Canadian League of Composers in recognition of his outstanding contribution to Canadian composers’ music. In the fall of 2009, he was named a CMC Ambassador and in 2010 received a star on the BC Entertainment Hall of Fame’s Starwalk. In 2012 Mr. Washburn received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal. In June 2014 he received the Michael Korn Founders Award for Development of the Professional Choral Art, presented by Chorus America.

Associate Choirs & Affiliate Conductors

Pacifica Singers

Pacifica Singers

Vancouver Youth Choir

Vancouver Youth Choir

Pacifica Singers is a select vocal ensemble which exists as part of the Vancouver Chamber Choir organization. The ensemble performs with Jon Washburn and the Vancouver Chamber Choir on three or four concert programmes each season and also presents one or two independent concerts with its own conductor.

Pacifica Singers provides an ideal performance venue for experienced and motivated choral singers whose goal is to make music at a very high level. By providing direct exposure to the world of professional music making, it is an experience of great value for singers intending to make a career in music. Current members live throughout the Lower Mainland, with many serving as conductors, music educators, and/or professional singers in their communities.

Most rehearsals are held on Tuesday evenings, with occasional weekend rehearsals and additional dress rehearsals as required. For more information or to schedule an audition time, please email: pacificasingers@vancouverchamberchoir.com.

The Vancouver Youth Choir is Vancouver’s newest choral organization for children and youth. Founded in 2013 by Carrie Tennant, the choirs provide a space for beginning to advanced young singers to develop their artistry in a creative and supportive community. Over the past three years, VYC has grown rapidly. Beginning our first season with 30 singers, the organization has now expanded to include over 140 singers in three separate choirs: the Vancouver Youth Choir, VYC Junior, and VYC Kids. In all our levels, we strive for artistry and excellence. We believe in the artistic potential of young people – regardless of their age, ability or experience. Just as important to us, however, is to create a safe and supportive place for this artistry to develop. In addition to building skill and fostering talent, it is part of the Vancouver Youth Choir’s mandate to develop creative, caring citizens who value contributing to and investing in their communities.

For more information please visit the Vancouver Youth Choir’s website.

Administrative Team

Jon Washburn

Artistic & Executive Director

Steven Bélanger

General Manager

Karen Seaboyer

Manager, Communications & Production

Sanae Moteki

Comptroller

Violet Goosen

Development

Tom Ellis

Librarian

Grant Wutzke

Auditions Coordinator

Board of Directors

Officers

PRESIDENT
George Laverock
Music Producer and Arts Administrator

VICE PRESIDENT
Andrew Dilts
MLT Aikins LLP

TREASURER
Kassia Grewal, CPA, CA

SECRETARY
Brent Hunter

PAST PRESIDENT
Janis Hamilton
Consultant, Fund Development

Directors

Matthew Baird
Public Relations Manager,
Vancouver Symphony Orchestra

JoAnne Barnum

Dr. Jeanette Gallant, (Oxford)
Voice Teacher, Ethnomusicologist

Cameron Haney
Singers’ Representative

Dr. Donna Hogge
Hematologist

Wendy Kish

Emily McClendon
Valkyrie Law Group LLP

Colin Miles

Laurent Munier
Financial Advisor,
Safe Pacific Financial Inc.

Yuliya Neverova
Business Consultant

David Rosborough
Pacific Academy

Dr. Robert Rothwell
Rheumatologist

Mehnaz Thawer
Proposal Coordinator

Marianne Werner

Honorary Patrons

John Bishop
Maurice Copithorne, Q.C., LL.D.
Dr. Stephen Drance, O.C.
Sam Feldman
Charles Flavelle
Ben Heppner, O.C.
Don Hudson
Dr. John MacDonald, O.C.
R. Murray Schafer

Mandate • Vision • Mission

Mandate

The Vancouver Chamber Choir exists in order to facilitate music-making of the highest caliber and commitment. Our organizational task is to make possible the highest artistic achievement of our musicians. In essence, our purpose is to provide a secure environment in which Canadian choral musicians can achieve a musical excellence of exceptional and long-lasting community value.

Vision

Our vision includes the development of the choral music of the future through commissioning and premiering of new works, supporting Canadian composers through the extensive performance of their choral works, encouraging the growth of the choral arts in our communities through extensive educational programming, and providing consistent employment for Canadian professional choral musicians as well as frequent guest opportunities for other Canadian performers and ensembles.

Mission

Our mission is to make choral music of fully professional character and quality; to sing repertoire of the highest quality, performed with the highest artistic excellence; to foster appreciation of choral music among the public; to contribute significantly to our local, national and international choral communities; to contribute to the long-term betterment of the choral art by preserving valuable choral traditions of the past and encouraging growth and innovation in choral art and education.