Celebrating its 50th anniversary in the 2020/21 season, The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus (ASOC) was founded in 1970 by former ASO Music Director Robert Shaw. Comprising 200 auditioned voices, the Chorus is an all-volunteer organization donating nearly 50 evenings or 120 hours of rehearsal and performance time each season. Led by ASO Director of Choruses Norman Mackenzie, the Chorus is known for its precision and expressive singing quality.
In addition to its regular performances with the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra (ASO), the Chorus is featured on many of the ASO’s recordings, which have won multiple Grammy® Awards, including nine for Best Choral Performance, four for Best Classical Recording and one for Best Opera Recording. Those include Vaughan Williams’ A Sea Symphony and Berlioz’s Requiem. The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Chorus performs large choral-symphonic works with the full Orchestra under the batons of Music Director Robert Spano and Principal Guest Conductor Donald Runnicles.
The Chorus made its debut at New York’s Carnegie Hall in 1976 in a performance of Beethoven’s SymphonyNo. 9 with the ASO, led by Robert Shaw. The Chorus also performed in Washington, D.C., for President-elect Jimmy Carter’s Inaugural Concert in 1977, and traveled to Germany three times to be a special guest of the Berlin Philharmonic, in December 2003 for performances of Britten’s War Requiem, in May 2008 for the Berlioz Requiem performances–all with Atlanta Symphony Orchestra Guest Conductor Donald Runnicles.