Chorale is a mixed chorus and performs
a varied repertoire in an annual series of subscription concerts
in addition to performances for various community organizations. Having completed our 50th season in June 2007,
the Chorale has flourished under the distinguished leadership of many excellent
conductors including founder Alden Hammond, and his successor, laureate
conductor Paul O. Grammer, as well as Frank Archer, Larry Newland,
Brian Aschinger, Stephen M. Smith and Anthony LaGruth.
The present membership includes several charter members as well
as musicians, teachers, and business people from throughout central
New Jersey. The Chorale has established itself as one of Monmouth
County's premiere musical organizations, performing a broad repertoire
of sacred and secular choral music throughout the state.
In 1978 the Chorale was selected
to represent the State of New Jersey in concert at the National
Cathedral in Washington, D.C. and during the 1988-89 season held
the position of Artist-in-Residence at Monmouth University. In
1999 the Chorale performed the U.S. premiere of newly reconstructed
masterworks written by Giovanni Gabrieli and others for St. Mark's,
Venice in concerts in Boston and New Jersey.
On January 27, 2001, the Chorale was honored to make our
Carnegie Hall debut, when we joined with the New York Grand
Opera Soloists, Chorus, and Orchestra, conducted by Maestro Vincent
La Selva, in a presentation of the Verdi Requiem in
a performance commemorating the 100th anniversary of the composer's
death. We were honored to be invited to once again join
with The New York Grand Opera Soloists, Chorus, and Orchestra,
conducted by Maestro Vincent La Selva, in a performance of Beethoven's Ninth
Symphony at Carnegie Hall on Tuesday, March
26, 2002 and on November 7, 2002 performing in the Triumphal Scene
from Aida. On June 16, 2003 the chorale was pleased to perform
at Carnegie Hall in a Mid-America Production of Mozart Requiem, conductor
Charles Hausmann. On November 30, 2003 the chorale joined the
New England Symphonic Ensemble in Leonard Bernstein's Chichester
Psalms and Zadok the Priest from
Handel's Coronation Anthems. Maestro Vincent La Selva invited
the chorale to join the New York Grand Opera Soloists, Chorus,
and Orchestra, in an encore performance of the Verdi Requiem on
March 29, 2004.
Under Anthony LaGruth, Music Director 2002-2015, the Chorale invited former members and past conductors to participate in our 50th Anniversary Concert (2007). A new feature of our concert series was the addition of one yearly concert in partnership with the Garden State Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus. Some of the highlights of that collaboration include Brahms’ German Requiem (2004 & 2014); Orff’s Carmina Burana (2005); Mozart’s Requiem (2006 & 2012) and Coronation Mass (2015); J.S Bach’s St. Matthew Passion (2007); Handel’s Messiah (2008 & 2010); Haydn’s Lord Nelson Mass (2008) and The Creation (2010); Faure’s Requiem (2009); Mendelssohn’s Elijah (2011); Verdi’s Requiem (2013); Rutter’s Requiem (2015) and more. As a community service, part of the proceeds of our March 2014 concert featuring Brahms’ Requiem, Copland’s A Lincoln Portrait, and Schoenberg’s A Survivor from Warsaw (2014) was donated to the Center for Holocaust, Human Rights & Genocide Education at Brookdale Community College.
The 2015-16 Season was led by Interim Conductor, Mark C. Cook, and Guest Conductor, Neil F. Brown. Mr. Brown is our permanent Music Director as of August, 2016.