Chanticleer

Composers

Biography

Active: 1978 - ; San Francisco , CA
Chanticleer may be the only independent full-time classical vocal ensemble in the United States. Since its inception in 1978, the group has developed an excellent reputation for its interpretation of music from many genres, and its bell-like sound has set a new ensemble standard.

Originally founded to sing Renaissance vocal repertoire, Chanticleer has toured worldwide and released dozens of recordings. While most of Chanticleer's work is
Read more done a cappella, the group has collaborated such unusual projects as a fully-staged opera, recordings of jazz standards with the Don Haas Trio, and performances with the unorthodox Japanese dancers Eiko and Koma. Its repertoire ranges from chant to twentieth century pop. In 1978, founder Louis Botto, a graduate student in musicology, was disturbed by the fact that sacred Renaissance vocal music was so rarely performed, so he formed a group to sing this neglected repertoire. Trying to hold to the male-only Renaissance tradition, Botto asked friends who sang with him in the San Francisco Symphony Chorus and Grace Cathedral's Choir of Men and Boys to join the group. Rehearsals began, and the ensemble arranged a debut performance in San Francisco's historic Mission Dolores.

The works chosen for the debut included compositions by Renaissance composers whose music would become staples of the group's repertoire: Byrd, Ockeghem, Morley, Dufay, and Josquin. The members settled on the name Chanticleer in honor of the "clear-singing" rooster in Geoffrey Chaucer's Canterbury Tales, which Charlie Erikson, one of the baritones, was reading at the time. While maintaining its basic repertoire of Renaissance music, Chanticleer also began experimenting with music of other genres. The number of singers varied and eventually settled at 12.

In 1980, the ensemble participated in the Festival of Masses in San Francisco. Robert Shaw was the festival's conductor that year, and after hearing Chanticleer's solo concert proclaimed it "one of the most beautiful musical experiences" of his life. A turning point in Chanticleer's history came when Joseph Jennings, a countertenor, joined the group in 1983. Other members soon recognized his exceptional vocal and interpretive abilities and asked him to become Chanticleer's first music director. Since he accepted that position, Jennings' startling vocal clarity and innovative arrangements have become hallmarks of the ensemble.

International early music audiences began to find out about Chanticleer after a 1984 performance at a large scholarly conference in Belgium. Chanticleer created its own label, Chanticleer Records, releasing a tenth-anniversary CD in 1988. Over the next six years, the ensemble released ten recordings on its private label. These CDs sold well at Chanticleer's concerts, and in 1994 Teldec Classics International signed Chanticleer to an exclusive recording contract. The group's recordings suddenly became available all over North America and abroad. By 1991, Chanticleer was financially able to make all 12 of its members full-time employees, allowing the group to tour more frequently and take on a wide variety of projects. Since then the ensemble has performed and recorded with the London Studio Orchestra, jazz legend George Shearing, and the New York Philharmonic. In 1994, the group presented a critically acclaimed, fully staged performance of Benjamin Britten's opera Curlew River. In 1997 Chanticleer recorded works by Mexican Baroque composers Manuel de Zumaya and Ignácio de Jerusalem with an orchestra of period instruments. It has commissioned works by many of the late twentieth century's foremost composers, including David Conte, Morton Gould, Bernard Rands, and Chen Yi (who served as Chanticleer's composer-in-residence from 1993 to 1996). In 1999, Chanticleer released a collection of these works on its CD Colors of Love, for which it received a Grammy Award. The group commissioned five composers from a variety of faith traditions to contribute movements to And on Earth, Peace: A Chanticleer Mass, which the group premiered in 2007 and also recorded. In 2008, Chanticleer was the first vocal group to be inducted into the American Classical Music Hall of Fame, and was honored as Musical America's Ensemble of the Year. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 56 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Mason Bates: Stereo Is King
    Label: Innova   Catalog: 882 Release Date: 03/25/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Mason Bates
    Performer:  Mason Bates,  Baird Dodge,  Susan Warner,  Tania Stavreva
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Grand Valley State University New Music Ensemble,  Chanticleer,  Chicago Symphony Orchestra members  ... 
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  • 2.
    Chanticleer - How Sweet the Sound
    Label: Teldec   Catalog: 641038 Release Date: 01/28/2014   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Giovanni Palestrina,  Ignacio Jerusalem,  Manuel de Zumaya,  Anonymous  ... 
    Performer:  Kevin Baum,  Frank Albinder,  Douglas [Tenor Vocals] Wright,  Christopher Fritzsche  ... 
    Conductor:  Joseph Jennings,  Ettore Stratta,  Frank Albinder,  Skip Sempé
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer,  Chanticleer Sinfonia,  Don Haas Trio  ... 
    CD: $68.99
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  • 3.
    Das Alte Werk - 50 CD Collection
    Label: Teldec   Catalog: 46438 Release Date: 11/19/2013   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Carl Philipp Emmanuel Bach,  Johann Sebastian Bach,  George Frideric Handel,  Orlando Gibbons  ... 
    Performer:  Herbert Tachezi,  Gustav Leonhardt,  Frans Brüggen,  Jeannette Van Wingerden  ... 
    Conductor:  Nikolaus Harnoncourt,  Gustav Leonhardt,  Werner Ehrhardt,  Giovanni Antonini  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Vienna Concentus Musicus,  Leonhardt Consort,  Studio for Early Music  ... 
    On sale! $299.98
    CD: $199.99
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  • 4.
    Teldec - 50-CD Collection
    Label: Teldec   Catalog: 643851 Release Date: 11/19/2013   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Béla Bartók,  Ludwig van Beethoven,  Antonín Dvorák,  Franz Joseph Haydn  ... 
    Performer:  András Schiff,  Josef Protschka,  Barbara Bonney,  Edita Gruberova  ... 
    Conductor:  Iván Fischer,  Nikolaus Harnoncourt,  Carlo Rizzi,  Reinbert De Leeuw  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Budapest Festival Orchestra,  Chamber Orchestra of Europe,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra  ... 
    On sale! $299.98
    CD: $230.49
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  • 5.
    The Siren's Call / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: CLIC009 Release Date: 01/29/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Andrea Gabrieli,  Giovanni Palestrina,  Carlo Gesualdo,  Nicolas Gombert  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    CD: $17.99
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  • 6.
    By Request / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 2284 Release Date: 10/30/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Steven Sametz,  William Mundy,  Mason Bates,  Chen Yi  ... 
    Performer:  Casey Breves
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    CD: $17.99
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  • 7.
    Love Story / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sebastian de Vivanco,  Tomás Luis de Victoria,  Maurice Duruflé,  Jean Yves Daniel-Lesur  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    CD: $17.99
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  • 8.
    Between Two Wars - The Art Of The Comedian Harmonists
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 2 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Vincent Youmans,  Bert Reisfeld,  Erwin Bootz,  Luigi Boccherini  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 9.
    Chanticleer Takes You Out Of This World
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 1 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Giovanni Palestrina,  Andrea Gabrieli,  Claudio Monteverdi,  Benjamin Britten  ... 
    Performer:  Gabriel Lewis-O'Connor,  Dylan Hostetter,  Matthew Oltman,  Todd Wedge  ... 
    Conductor:  Matthew Oltman
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 10.
    Ludus Paschalis - The Resurrection Play Of Tours
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 6 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Anonymous
    Conductor:  Cheryl Ann Fulton
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer,  Angelorum
    CD: $17.99
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  • 11.
    The Boy Whose Father Was God / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 7 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Henryk Mikolaj Górecki,  Roxanna Panufnik,  Mason Bates,  Zoltán Kodály  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 12.
    Our Favorite Carols
    Label: Ingrooves   Catalog: 2246 Release Date: 10/24/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  William Billings,  Charles Ives,  John Jacob Niles  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 13.
    Serene Classics
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 673671 Release Date: 07/26/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Anonymous,  Giovanni Palestrina,  Tomás Luis de Victoria,  Johann Sebastian Bach  ... 
    Conductor:  Edward Higginbottom
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer,  Oxford New College Choir
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  • 14.
    A Chanticleer Christmas
    Label: Mesa Bluemoon   Catalog: 2093 Release Date: 09/14/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  Adolphe Adam,  William J. Kirkpatrick,  Robert H. Young  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 15.
    Mysteria: Gregorian Chants
    Label: Teldec   Catalog: 4683624 Release Date: 02/22/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Anonymous
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 16.
    Cristobal De Morales: Missa Mille Regretz, Etc / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8809 Release Date: 11/17/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Cristóbal de Morales,  Josquin Des Préz
    Conductor:  Joseph Jennings
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 17.
    Josquin: Missa Mater Patris;  Agricola / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8808 Release Date: 11/17/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Josquin Des Préz,  Alexander Agricola,  Antoine Brumel
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 18.
    Best Of Chanticleer
    Label: Rhino Records   Catalog: 8443 Release Date: 11/10/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Traditional,  Ann Ronnell,  Doyle Lawson,  George Gershwin  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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    CD: $13.99
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  • 19.
    Fireside Christmas With Chanticleer [DVD]
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 204 Release Date: 10/26/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Xaver Gruber,  Traditional,  Benjamin Britten,  Franz Biebl  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    DVD: $14.99
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  • 20.
    With A Poet's Eye - New American Choral Music / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8804 Release Date: 10/22/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Cary John Franklin,  Ned Rorem,  Allen Shearer,  William Hawley  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 21.
    Brumel: Missa Berzerette Savoyenne / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8805 Release Date: 10/13/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Josquin Des Préz,  Antoine Brumel
    Performer:  Randall K Wong,  Bruce Sellers,  Mark Keller,  Neal Rogers
    Conductor:  Joseph Jennings
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 22.
    Chanticleer - The Anniversary Album 1978-1988
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8801 Release Date: 10/13/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Clark, Mattie Moss, Dr.,  Traditional,  Harold Arlen,  A. Seymour Brown  ... 
    Performer:  Joseph Jennings,  Tom Hart,  Steven Rickards,  Neal Rogers  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 23.
    Chanticleer On The Air - Live Radio Highlights
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8807 Release Date: 10/13/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Josquin Des Préz,  Giovanni Palestrina,  Claudio Monteverdi,  Thomas Weelkes  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 24.
    I Have Had Singing - A Chanticleer Portrait
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8810 Release Date: 10/13/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Bill Evans,  Traditional,  Harold Arlen,  James Woodie Alexander  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
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  • 25.
    Psallite! - A Renaissance Christmas / Chanticleer
    Label: Chanticleer Records   Catalog: 8806 Release Date: 10/13/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Josquin Des Préz,  Giovanni Maria Nanino,  Gerónimo González,  John Taverner  ... 
    Performer:  Mitchell Sandler,  Ted Bakkila,  Neal Rogers,  Terry Larsen  ... 
    Conductor:  Louis Botto
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chanticleer
    ArkivCD $16.99
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