Santa Fe Desert Chorale
The Santa Fe Desert Chorale is a professional chamber choir that enriches the cultural life of the residents of New Mexico and enhances the experience of national and international visitors to Santa Fe by presenting performances that represent the highest artistic standard.
2012 marks the 30th anniversary of the Santa Fe Desert Chorale, one of the premier professional chamber choirs in the United States. Each summer, and again during the December holiday season, some of the finest singers from around the country come to Santa Fe to perform works from the rich choral tradition. Our audience consists of a mix of New Mexico residents as well as national and international visitors. Each year we present to nearly 10,000 adults and children – 70 percent of which are New Mexicans.
This year the Desert Chorale was contracted for performances with the Santa Fe Opera - in their production of King Roger, and the Dallas Symphony - for their production of J.S. Bach’s St Matthew Passion. In 2013 the Desert Chorale will perform on four concerts of the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival. The Desert Chorale mainly performs a cappella (without accompaniment) and is renowned for its rich sound, seamless blend and wide-ranging programming, having performed more than 2000 compositions by some 500 composers, spanning nine centuries of music.
Founder Lawrence Bandfield (1933-2009) conducted the first season in 1983 and continued as Music Director until 1998. The values that he established sustain the Desert Chorale today: diverse repertory performed by top quality, professional musicians; an intimate rapport with audience members and donors; and strong relationships with the community of northern New Mexico – as evidenced by regular performances outside Santa Fe; tours of historic churches; and collaborations with Santa Fe New Music, Santa Fe Opera, Santa Fe Symphony and others.