Quire Cleveland makes life more harmonious by introducing audiences to choral music not heard in the modern era — including modern premieres of works newly discovered or reconstructed — breathing life into the music of our shared heritage. Through the human voice, Quire provides a vital connection to distant lands and ages past, revealing the timeless universality of this art. Under the artistic direction of Ross W. Duffin, Quire performs 9 centuries of a cappella repertoire.

Instant Karma

Listening to the presentation of Quire, the new professional a capella choir during their premiere performance, one had the impression that the joyful sounds could easily have soared to the very heavens, had not the beautifully ornate gothic roof of St. John’s Cathedral stood in the way. The concert was titled “Sing Joyfully,” appropriate as the first work performed was a piece by that name, from the composer William Byrd. Several other pieces by him were also presented, as were songs by Thomas Tallis, Thomas Weelkes and Orlando Gibbons. Englishmen all, they lived between perhaps 1505 to 1625. It is the sort of music that this sort of edifice displays in all its glory. Read more »

New Choir, Quire, Offer Joyous Debut

In olden days, a choir was known as a quire. The spelling may be considered obsolete now, but not the concept, as the newest professional ensemble in town appears happy to proclaim. 

The debut concert of Quire Cleveland on Wednesday at St. John’s Cathedral in downtown Cleveland ends a drought of two decades. Not since the Robert Page Cleveland Singers closed shop has the city possessed a professional chorus. As led by Peter Bennett, a British-born faculty member at Case Western Reserve University, Quire Cleveland has set out to explore unaccompanied works mostly from the late medieval, Renaissance and Baroque eras. 

Bennett and his 18 singers introduced themselves with a bounty of sacred English music from the late 16th and early 17th centuries. The program’s title, “Sing Joyfully,” was reflected in sophisticated, alert artistry. Read more »

Quire on WKSU

Tonight “at the Cathedral of St. John in downtown Cleveland, 16 angelic voices herald the debut of Northeastern Ohio’s newest ensemble: its first professional choir since the Robert Page Singers faded to a whisper 10 years ago. We listened to sacred music written by William Byrd in 1575, at a recent rehearsal…” listen here or at wksu.org

[audio:2008/09/23699.mp3|titles=Quire on WKSU]

Newly Formed Quire Cleveland Will Focus on A Cappella Early Music

Cleveland is about to acquire Quire Cleveland, a professional choral ensemble devoted largely to a cappella works from the late medieval, Renaissance and Baroque eras. The group’s music director will be Peter Bennett, a British-born music faculty member at Case Western Reserve University and a conductor-scholar with extensive experience in early music.

The 18-member Quire, whose name is a 16th-century spelling of choir, will make its debut Wednesday, Sept. 24, at St. John Cathedral in downtown Cleveland with “Sing Joyfully!” The free program will comprise sacred choral music from Tudor England, including William Byrd’s Mass for Four Voices and pieces by Thomas Tallis, Orlando Gibbons and Thomas Weelkes. Read more (1) »