“The members of EVUSA
do exquisite work...”
–The Huffington Post
“Judith Clurman gets a joyous, exuberant sound from her chorus. In addition to her excellent musicianship, she inspires her singers to reach new heights.”
Judith Clurman's Essential Voices USA (EVUSA), one of New York’s preeminent choral ensembles, brings together a roster of seasoned professionals and auditioned volunteers. With this unique choral model, created by Clurman, the size of the ensemble is constantly changing, dictated by the specific musical needs of each project.
Photo © Stephen Sorokoff, used with permission.
EVUSA’S mission is threefold
The ensemble is completely at home in New York’s iconic performance venues. It performs at the Carnegie Hall and the DiMenna Center for Classical Music. EVUSA participated in the spirited Leonard Bernstein Celebration at Symphony Space and served as the chorus in residence with the The New York Pops at Carnegie Hall. EVUSA also produces its own classical choral, musical theater, and operatic readings, workshops, and recordings. The ensemble’s wide-ranging and adaptable musicality is evident from the variety of its activities.
EVUSA was in residence with National Public Radio the month of February 2011. That same year the ensemble launched The Composer Speaks, a series of concerts in workshop format moderated by Judith and designed to encourage dialogue with composers. Past events have included the music of established and up-and-coming composers such as Linsey Abrams, John Glover, Sheldon Harnick, Larry Hochman, Sally Lamb McCune, Shulamit Ran, Kelley Rourke, Bruce Ruben, Paul Schoenfield, Joshua Schmidt, and Roberto Sierra.
The group performed on the critically acclaimed CD Celebrating the American Spirit (Sono Luminus) featuring Kelli O’Hara and Ron Raines. The repertoire ranged from Milton Babbitt to Irving Berlin. The disc includes the exciting cycle, “Sing Out, Mr. President,” a collection of sixteen short pieces based on the words of sixteen American presidents.
Students were invite to join EVUSA and record the song “The Music in My Mind” for Marvin Hamlisch’s children’s book, Marvin Makes Music, and was honored to be invited to participate in Hamlisch’s stirring memorial at The Juilliard School.
In 2011 and 2012 EVUSA rocked ‘the rock’ on NBC’s national broadcasts of the Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting.
A highlight of its 2012–2013 season was EVUSA’s participation in the Presidential Inaugural activities, including a sing-along of the “Sing Out, Mr. President” song cycle at the “Church of the Presidents” in Washington, D.C. The ensemble’s CD was featured on NPR on Inauguration Day 2013.
In 2012, EVUSA premiered the SATB arrangement of Stephen Schwartz’s important and deeply moving work, “Testimony,” at Carnegie Hall, under Judith’s direction.
In 2013–2014 the ensemble’s versatility will be on display once again. Performances include Carnegie Hall concerts, exciting Composer Speaks programs, and a performance and recording of Mozart’s Raunchy Canons. In addition, a new recording is on the way—the Clurman-Hochman-Mitchell arrangement of “Songs of Freedom: A Celebration of Chanukah” and “Set Me as a Seal” by Nico Muhly.
To learn more about EVUSA and membership requirements, browse our website or find us on Facebook.
“With gorgeous harmonies and soaring vocal chorale sounds, Essential Voices USA, conducted by Judith Clurman, is a mixed group of skilled singers who bring thoughtful and rich performances. . . there are glorious sounds here. . . .”