The Santa Barbara Quire of Voyces was founded in 1993 to rediscover the sacred a capella choral music of the Renaissance and modern age. Nathan Kreitzer conducts twenty-five, annually auditioned, professional singers from the Central Coast who volunteer their talents to present the highest quality of performance all in historic settings. The ensemble performs the works of several living composers such as Eric Whitacre, Stephen Paulus, Michael McGlynn, Steven Sametz, Carl Rütti, and Frank Ticheli and continues to premier new works of composer-in-residence, Michael Eglin.
The Quire has collaborated with the Santa Barbara Chamber Orchestra to perform major works of the Baroque Era including the Mozart Requiem, the Bach Mass in B Minor, and the Handel Dixit Dominus. Beyond Santa Barbara, they perform internationally including many tours to Europe. Invitations have been gladly accepted at Salisbury Cathedral, Canterbury Cathedral, and Saint James Picadilly in London as well as excellent performances in Vienna, Prague, Budapest, Finland, Estonia, and a special appearance at the Gotland Medieval Festival in Visby, Sweden. In 2010, Quire of Voyces ventured over the Atlantic once again with a personal invitation to sing High Mass at St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome. They were asked for multiple encores after their performances along the Amalfi Coast and in Naples.
Annually, Quire of Voyces, along with Westmont College, hosts a choral festival in which hundreds of high school singers from around the state have the opportunity to be immersed in a capella music, perform in historic venues, and work with highly respected choral leaders such as William Hall, John Alexander, Vance George, Paul Smith, Tom Davies and Gary Unruh.
Currently the Quire of Voyces has six compact disc recordings available for purchase from Chaucer’s Bookstore, iTunes, and online at cdbaby.com/all/quireofvoyces. The newest release, Latin Mass II, has already received rave reviews. Their recordings are featured regularly on classical radio KDB 93.7 FM.
Quire of Voyces is partially sponsored by Santa Barbara City College which underwrites some of the operating expenses; the group is dependent on grants and individual donations to cover additional production costs. Please consider giving a gift to help this music continue to thrive in Santa Barbara.
photo credit: Bob McGee