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Biography
The Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh, a premier ensemble, is dedicated to performing at the highest musical standards, enriching our community and advancing the choral art.

The MCP shall be recognized as the greater Pittsburgh region’s preeminent independent and symphonic chorus. Nationally, it shall rank as one of the most highly regarded choral ensembles for its innovative artistic, educational, and outreach achievements.

The Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh, a largely volunteer choir of 115 voices including a 20-voice professional core, is renowned for its versatility, singing oratorio, opera, Broadway, folk, and symphonic repertoire.

Founded in 1908, and having earned the distinction of being Pittsburgh's oldest continuing performing arts organization, the Choir is under the direction of Music Director Betsy Burleigh. The Mendelssohn Choir's Centennial Celebration began with a performance of Felix Mendelssohn's epic oratorio Elijah in April 2008, conducted by Grammy Award-winning Robert Page, the Choir's Music Director Emeritus.

As the Pittsburgh Symphony’s chorus of choice, the Mendelssohn has performed under the baton of some of the world's greatest conductors, including Lorin Maazel, Mariss Jansons, Raphael Frühbeck de Burgos, Michael Tilson-Thomas, Claudio Abbado, Mstislav Rostropovich, Charles Dutoit, André Previn, Leonard Slatkin, Sir Neville Marriner, Yan Pascal Tortelier, Helmut Rilling, Ingo Metzmacher, Richard Hickox, Zdenek Mácal, and Sir Andrew Davis. Performances of the Choir with the Pittsburgh Symphony are heard locally over WQED-FM (89.3) and distributed nationally by PRI.

The Choir has numerous commissions and premieres to its credit, including two works by Nancy Galbraith: Requiem and Missa Mysteriorum, and An American Oratorio by Ned Rorem.

A leader and collaborator in the regional arts community, the Mendelssohn’s artistic partners have included the Pittsburgh Opera, the River City Brass Band, The International Poetry Forum, Duquesne University Tamburitzans and the Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre.

The members of the Choir share a remarkable commitment to the art of making great choral music and collectively contribute an estimated 30,000 hours of service per season.

The Mendelssohn Choir of Pittsburgh is a Steinway Artist.
This biography was most recently edited by...
Simeon - 17 Dec 2009
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