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Heritage Chorale
History

Our Story
The Heritage Chorale celebrates its 80th season in 2016-2017. Originally named the Framingham Choral Society, the Chorale was founded in the fall of 1937 by a small group of Framingham residents on a budget of $62!  Except for a brief time during World War II, the Chorale has rehearsed and performed in Framingham and nearby communities ever since. The size of the Chorale has fluctuated from a group of 40 to our present membership of about 100. Much has changed in our 80-year history but not our resolve to enrich ourselves and the community with song. 

During its long history, the Chorale has performed a wide range of both classical and contemporary choral works. In its earliest seasons, the chorus performed The Messiah each year to sell-out audiences. Most recently, the Chorale has performed works of contemporary composers Daniel Pinkham, Morten Lauridsen, and Randall Thompson, as well as Mozart, Haydn, and Brahms.

In February, 1988, the Chorale added a Pops-style concert to its season. We have delighted in presenting lighter musical fare, often designed around themes and with popular pieces from opera, movies, and musical theater.

In July, 2010, the Chorale traveled on its first concert tour and performed in the European capitals of Vienna, Austria and Prague, Czech Republic, as well as the Melk Abbey. This was followed in the summer of 2012 by a tour to Canada, where we were privileged to bring our music to Montreal and Quebec City. Most recently, the Chorale toured in Ireland (June 29 - July 6, 2015), with concerts in Galway, Derry, and Dublin.

Our Music Directors
The Chorale’s history has been one of outstanding directors.  Much of the Heritage Chorale’s recent success has come thanks to the high standards set by current Music Director John Finney, who has led the Chorale since 1987. 

Dr. Edward Gilday, founder 1938 – 1957; 1958 – 1964
Allen Lannom 1957 – 1958; 1964 – 1966
John Oliver 1966 – 1973
Robert Gronquist 1973 – 1974
Christopher Carlson 1974 – 1983; 1984 – 1985
Philip Moss 1985 – 1987
John Finney 1983 – 1984; 1987 – present

Our Collaborations
In some seasons, the Chorale has collaborated with area symphonic groups to perform major works. Recent performances include Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 and Brahms’ A German Requiem with the New Philharmonia Orchestra, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony with the Wellesley Symphony Orchestra, and Mendelssohn's Lobgesang with the Boston College Symphony Orchestra. In 2015, the Chorale collaborated with Monroe Crossing, one of America's finest Bluegrass bands to present The World Beloved: A Bluegrass Mass by Carol Barnett. Later in the same year, the Chorale presented Rutter’s rarely-heard Mass
of the Children
in collaboration with VOICES Boston, the superb children’s chorus that frequently performs with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Shakespeare and Friends in 2016 was a collaboration with the Handel and Haydn Society’s Young Women’s Chorus (YWC), directed by Alyson Greer.

Founder, Dr. Edward Gilday
Founder, Dr. Edward Gilday