Founded in 1988 by conductor Harold Rosenbaum, The New York Virtuoso Singers ( www.nyvirtuoso.org ) has become this country's leading exponent of contemporary choral music. Although the chorus performs music of all periods, its emphasis is on commissioning, performing and recording the music of American composers.
From its early days in 1988, as an offshoot of a chorus-in-residence created expressly for the Brooklyn Philharmonic, until the present day, with self-produced concerts, recordings, commissions and tours, NYVS has carved a unique niche for itself in the musical world. NYVS is a twelve to sixteen-member professional choral ensemble (sometimes expanded to 24 or more) dedicated to presenting both seldom-heard works by past and contemporary masters, as well as premieres by today's composers. Harold Rosenbaum has placed a special emphasis on supporting American composers. NYVS has been featured many times on radio and TV. In August 1993, the group appeared as the first-ever guest chorus at Tanglewood Music Center 's annual Festival of Contemporary Music (returning in 2003), and in January 1995, NYVS made its second appearance at the Juilliard School .
NYVS has won the prestigious ASCAP-Chorus America "Award for Adventuresome Programming of Contemporary Music" three times, and has been given Chorus America 's "American Choral Works Performance Award." It appears on 14 commercial CDs: SONY Classical, Albany , CRI, Bridge, Koch International, Capstone, and DRG.
With grants from The Mary Flagler Charitable Trust, The Koussevitzky Foundation of the Library of Congress and other sources, The New York Virtuoso Singers has commissioned 18 works by composers including Michael Gordon, David Felder, David Winkler, George Tsontakis, and Tristan Keuris. The New York Virtuoso Singers has premiered over 150 works by composers such as Luciano Berio, John Harbison, Hans Werner Henze, Louis Andriessen, Shulamit Ran, George Perle, Harrison Birtwistle, Ernst Krenek, Thea Musgrave, Jonathan Harvey, Arvo Pärt and Andrew Imbrie.
The New York Virtuoso Singers collaborates regularly with New York 's leading orchestras and ensembles, including The Brooklyn Philharmonic, The Juilliard Orchestra, The Orchestra of St. Luke's, The American Symphony, The Bard Festival Orchestra, The Mark Morris Dance Group, The Bang on a Can Festival, Parnassus , and The Riverside Symphony. Collaborations include The American Composers Orchestra, The American Symphony, The Brooklyn Philharmonic, and The Glynbourne Opera Company. The New York Virtuoso Singers is Chorus-in-Residence at St. Ignatius of Antioch Episcopal Church in New York City.