Mormon Tabernacle Choir Blog

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir Does “the Wave”

The Mormon Tabernacle Choir is a well-oiled machine. With the Choir’s busy schedule, including weekly broadcasts, annual concerts, biennial tours, and CD recordings, Music Director Mack Wilberg calls it “a speeding train that does not stop to let its passengers off.” The Choir’s biweekly rehearsals are planned to the minute—new songs are often added to the already enormous repertoire, leaving little time to stop and celebrate achievements.

As creative musicians, the 360-member Choir is a lively group, despite the buttoned-up reputation that precedes them. This liveliness was showcased on tour when the Choir sang “Hallelujah” from Handel’s Messiah on an airplane, led by guest soloist Alex Boyé.

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Be a Part of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir

Have you ever pictured yourself in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir? Have you said to yourself, “Someday I’ll have the courage to try out” or “In a few more years I’ll have less going on in my life”? Now is the perfect time to audition—the Choir is reaching younger audiences across the globe in new and exciting ways.  

If you only know the Choir from general conference, you are aware of the beautiful testimony that is shared through music and song. As wonderful as that experience is, the Choir does much more that you may not even be aware of. For example, the Choir usually tours every two years and sings amazing songs that aren’t generally heard on the weekly broadcast. The Choir just returned from a tour of the East Coast and will be touring Central Europe in the summer of 2016. During the East Coast tour, members of the Choir and Orchestra sang on an airplane with Alex Boyé and performed at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx.

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The Mormon Tabernacle Choir Announces 2016 European Tour

The time has finally come! The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square will be going on an international tour for the first time in 18 years as they visit eight European cities over 20 days from Monday, June 27, through Saturday, July 16, 2016. The Choir and Orchestra will kick off the tour with performances in Berlin and Nuremberg, Germany, before heading to Vienna, Austria, and Zurich, Switzerland. They will then head back to Germany for a concert in Frankfurt, followed by concerts in Brussels, Belgium, and Rotterdam, Netherlands, before concluding the tour in Paris, France. Venue and ticket information will be announced at a later date.

The Choir’s president Ron Jarrett said: “Through social media we have been able to reach audiences far and wide. Now with this tour, we are thrilled that for the first time in nearly two decades, international audiences will be able to enjoy the music of the Choir in person.” This tour will mark the sixth time the Choir has traveled to Europe since its first grand European tour in 1955, which lasted a whopping seven weeks.

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Watch the Pioneer Day Concert Online Saturday Night

If you weren’t able to get tickets for the Pioneer Day concerts on July 17–18, 2015, you’re in luck! The concert will be streamed live on motab.org or on our YouTube channel at 8:00 p.m. on July 18, 2015. The concert, Music for a Summer Evening, will feature Laura Osnes, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, and the Orchestra at Temple Square performing Broadway favorites.

When the announcement was made that Osnes would be this year’s guest artist, she tweeted, “So thrilled to get to perform with the prestigious Mormon Tabernacle Choir this July!!”

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President Jarrett Looks Back at Tour

It’s one thing to sing in the Choir.  It’s another to be the president of the massive volunteer musical organization.  Ron Jarrett has done both.  He is the first choir president since pioneer times to also have been a singing member of the choir.

That’s why the recent Atlantic Coast tour was so interesting for him.  He remembered somewhat longingly the days of singing in the loft but acting in his new role he did a superb job of being the one to oversee the whole operation. He hosted events for dignitaries, encouraged musicians when the rain poured down, rode the bus, stood in line for breakfast, lunch and dinner, shook hands, talked with Choir and Orchestra members at every opportunity, and was the first to applaud for the outstanding performances. His wife Lucie who accompanied him did the same.

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Pioneer Day Concert Viewing Options

What do you do when you want to watch the Pioneer Day concert but you live outside of Utah or the United States? Simple—you stream it live on our website (mormontabernaclechoir.org) Saturday night, July 18, 2015, at 8:00 p.m. If you prefer to use YouTube, click here to access youtube.com/mormontabchoir on July 18 at 8:00 p.m.

If you have access to BYUtv, you can watch the concert on BYUtv on Saturday, July 18, at 8:00 p.m., Sunday, July 19, at 5:00 p.m., and Friday, July 24, at 5:30 p.m.

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Nobody Whistles Like the Mormon Tabernacle Choir

For the Pioneer Day concert in 2014, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir performed alongside Santino Fontana, who starred as Prince Hans in Disney’s blockbuster movie Frozen. The concert was titled "A Summer Celebration of Song," and that it was. The Choir began the night by performing songs to honor Mormon Pioneers, such as “They the Builders of the Nation” and “Faith in Every Footstep,” before seamlessly transitioning into three West Side Story favorites. For “Something’s Coming,” Fontana made his entrance from stage right for the first of three appearances with the Choir and Orchestra in a year, including the Christmas concerts and the concert for the American Choral Directors Association.

After performing several songs from Broadway’s Cinderella, several Disney songs were sung, including a “Whistle While You Work/Heigh Ho!” medley. The cheerful medley from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs was an instant crowd pleaser, as members of the Choir whistled like you’ve never heard before. At least half of the 360-member Choir whistled in unison, creating a beautiful sound that echoed throughout the walls of the conference center. Watch the video of the "Whistle While You Work/Heigh Ho!” medley:

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Choir and Orchestra Off on Atlantic Coast Tour

Every two years for almost two decades, the Mormon Tabernacle Choir has gone on tour, performing in both international and national concert halls and outdoor venues.  The Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square will be performing seven major concerts in Maryland, New York and Massachusetts, including two programs in Stern Auditorium on the Perelman Stage in the famous Carnegie Hall.

Choir Notes asked Mack Wilberg, music director of the Choir, what his favorite part of tour is.  He looks past turning in his luggage a week early to be trucked across the country or traveling with three plane loads of people or even the sound checks in each facility to get the signature music of the Choir just right.  The answer to the question, he is quick to say: “It’s the concerts.” 

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