VocalEssence champions choral music of all genres, celebrating the vocal experience through innovative concerts, commissions, and community engagement. Called “one of the irreplaceable music ensembles of our time” by National Endowment for the Arts former chairman Dana Gioia, VocalEssence was founded by Philip Brunelle in 1969.

VocalEssence presents an annual series of concerts exploring the world of voices and instruments in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. The 32-voice VocalEssence Ensemble Singers are the professional core of the larger 130-voice VocalEssence Chorus. “Expect the unexpected” has long been Brunelle’s personal mantra, and it shows in a wide range of musical styles as varied as opera, oratorio, jazz, Broadway and newly commissioned contemporary works.