“Shaped and guided by the sensitive hands of conductor Paul Hillier, Chamber Choir Ireland continue to be sonically and musically adventurous.” – Journal of Music 2017
Garnering a strong reputation for its unique approach to creative commissioning, recording and programming, Chamber Choir Ireland is the country’s flagship choral ensemble and national chamber choir under the Artistic Direction of the multi-award- winning conductor, Paul Hillier. The Choir’s programmes span from early renaissance to the present day, incorporating established choral classics with cutting edge commissions, and a style of performance that incorporates versatility, dynamism and often vocal pyrotechnics.
Chamber Choir Ireland performances have been described as having a tone which is ‘liquid in its power and purity’ with a ‘strong vocal flexibility of style’ (Belfast Telegraph). The Choir has a strong commitment to touring in Ireland and continues to develop its touring network in order to present high quality choral concerts to audiences around the country. International touring has included the USA, Russia, South America and Germany.
Forthcoming recording releases will include the premiere recording of Tarik O’Regan and Alice Goodman’s cantata, A Letter of Rights, with the Irish Chamber Orchestra. The choir has previously recorded for the Harmonia Mundi, RTE Lyric FM labels and most recently, the world premiere recording of works by Gerald Barry, Barry meets Beethoven, featuring the Crash Ensemble and Stephen Richardson on the Orchid Classics label.
Chamber Choir Ireland has a strong Learning and Participation programme, including in 2018 Composers in the Classroom, Choral Sketches, Sing! at Axis:Ballymun and Choral lectures. 2017-2019 will see the Choir develop ‘An Island Sings’, a large-scale community choirs commissioning project in collaboration with the Association of Irish Choirs and Poetry Ireland.
Chamber Choir Ireland receives principal funding and support from the Arts Council/ an Chomhairle Ealaíon with additional support from Dublin City Council and support from The National Lottery through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.
Chamber Choir Ireland is a resident ensemble at the National Concert Hall of Ireland and Associate Artists to Dublin City University
Paul Hillier is from Dorset in England and studied at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. His career has embraced singing, conducting, and writing about music. Earlier in his career he was founding director of the Hilliard Ensemble, and subsequently founded Theatre of Voices. He has taught in the USA at the University of California campuses at Santa Cruz and Davis, and from 1996-2003 was Director of the Early Music Institute at Indiana University. He was Principal Conductor of the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (2001-2007) and has been Chief Conductor of Ars Nova Copenhagen since 2003. His recordings, over a hundred CDs including seven solo recitals, have earned worldwide acclaim and won numerous prizes. His books about Arvo Pärt and Steve Reich, together with numerous anthologies of choral music, are published by Oxford University Press. In 2006 he was awarded an OBE for services to choral music. In 2007 he received the Order of the White Star of Estonia, and was awarded a Grammy for Best Choral Recording. In 2008 he took up the position of Artistic Director and Chief Conductor of the National Chamber Choir of Ireland (now Chamber Choir Ireland), and in 2009 was invited to form the new Coro Casa da Musica in Porto, Portugal. In 2010 he won a second Grammy (this time in the small ensemble category), for Theatre of Voices’ recording of David Lang’s The Little Match Girl Passion (which also won a Pulitzer Prize), together with a selection of choral works by Lang, sung by Ars Nova Copenhagen.