The recording of Kyr’s Paradiso Vocale receives an excellent review

America Record Guide has issued a lovely review of Robert Kyr’s Paradiso,  calling it “stunning” and  “a must-buy if you are interested in the Divine Comedy”. Paradiso was especially commissioned for the sacred music drama “Journeying La Divina Comedia”, with support from the Ann Stookey Fund for New Music.  The CD can be viewed in Albany Record’s page, in and YouTube.

The second part of Philip Glass’ A Madrigal Opera performed by Notre Vocale

Notre Dame Vocale, composed on this occasion of the members and alumni of the Conducting Studio at the University of Notre Dame, performed a multimedia version of Parts III,IV and Closing of Philip Glass’ A Madrigal Opera.  The composer was present, in what was a joyous homage by the university to his extraordinary career. The virtuoso violist Luis Enrique Vargas took the extremely demanding obbligato part, joined by dancers Colin Raybin and Kelly Hirina, and the video art by Geoffrey Bell.


Philip Glass’ “A Madrigal Opera” – our contribution to a celebration!

Next March 29, Notre Dame Vocale will be absolutely thrilled to join the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center and the Music Department of the University of Notre Dame in honoring the great American composer Philip Glass. The DeBartolo Center and Third Coast Percussion are also premiering a new work on March 30!!! Our contribution will be the second part of Glass’ “A Madrigal Opera”, with the fantastic violist Luis Enrique Vargas​, dancers Colin Raybin and Kelly Hirina, and video artist Geoff Bell. I hope those of you in the area can join us during these two days of celebration!

The Ann Stookey Fund for New Music supports a second consortium commission for Notre Dame Vocale

The Ann Stookey Fund for New Music supports a second consortium commission for Notre Dame Vocale with The Crossing (Philadelphia), I Cantori New York (New York City) and Volti (San Francisco) for a new work by Pulitzer Prize winner Caroline Shaw.



Notre Dame Vocale, the choral research project of Professor of Conducting Carmen-Helena Téllez at the University of Notre Dame has joined the Grammy-winning conductor and ensemble Donald Nally and The Crossing to commission a new work by Pulitzer Prize winner Caroline Shaw. They are also joined by Mark Shapiro and I Cantori New York, and Robert Geary and Volti of San Francisco.  The project is supported by the Ann Stookey Fund for New Music, who also supported the commission of Robert Kyr’s Paradiso, premiered by Notre Dame Vocale at Notre Dame during the sacred music drama “Journeying La Divina Commedia: Desert, Discovery, Song” in 2016. 

The Ann Stookey Fund also supported the first commission of the consortium, a work on Catholic poets by American composer Gregory Spears, The Tower and the Garden. Notre Dame Vocale is proud to represent the work of university ensembles in a consortium that includes some of the best professional ensembles in the United States.


The Ann Stookey Fund for New Music was established in celebration of the life of Ann Stookey, an avid choral singer and strong supporter of new music, who passed away in 2012. A number of works commissioned by the Fund have received their world premieres. “We are delighted to work with a consortium of highly regarded, leading edge choral organizations to identify the next generation of great choral composers and to support efforts to bring their work to audiences,” said Joe Waz, chair of the Ann Stookey Fund for New Music. “With this latest commission to Caroline Shaw, who has been hailed for her ‘exquisite, distinctive (compositional) voice’, the Fund is pleased to help expand the choral arts in Ann’s memory.”


Composer, violinist, and singer Caroline Shaw is the youngest recipient of the Pulitzer Prize in Music. She appears regularly as a vocalist with Roomful of Teeth and as a violinist with the American Contemporary Music Ensemble. Her works have been performed by The Crossing, the Baltimore Symphony, Roomful of Teeth, So Percussion, the Brentano String Quartet, and many other leading ensembles. She has also co-produced and contributed vocals to several Kanye West tracks.  She visited Notre Dame last Fall with A Roomful of Teeth, and she composed a new work, In Living Green, for the Notre Dame Children’s Choir in 2017.


Donald Nally and The Crossing will perform at Notre Dame this Sunday, February 10, at the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center. Notre Dame Vocale also will give the Indiana premiere of Spears’ TheTower and The Garden on May 10, 2019, in an interdisciplinary concert that will also include The Beatitudes, a new choral work by Professor Jorge Muñiz of Indiana University South Bend, in collaboration with the Notre Dame Children’s Choir and the Euclid Quartet.


For more information on the work of the Ann Stookey Fund, please visit at You can also follow the Fund on Facebook (Ann Stookey Fund for New Music) or Twitter (@AnnStookeyMusic).  Notre Dame Vocale’s CD of Paradiso was released last December 1st by Albany Records.

A Mirror Over Time – an annotated concert


Notre Dame Vocale is excited to present “A Mirror Over Time: Self-reflecting Themes in the Catholic Musico-Poetic Imagination,” in the context of the conference “Trying to Say God” (, a gathering about the Catholic literary spirit. The program features works by James MacMlllan, Arvo Pärt, Josquin Desprez, Francisco Guerrero and Cary Boyce, as well as Gregorian chant. Recurring ideas have excited the inspiration of composers across history, resulting in some of the most beautiful and consoling music ever written. For this conference, the program is annotated with video projections and supertitles. To see the repertoire, click HERE.

WHERE: Washington Hall, University of Notre Dame

WHEN: Friday June 23, 9:15 -10 pm

Free and Open to the Public


Vocale begins preparations for The Dante Project


Image dante and his world smallUnder the leadership  of Vocale’s director Carmen-Helena Téllez, the  International Dante Project will present a new interdisciplinary work, “JOURNEYING LA DIVINA COMMEDIA: DESERT, DISCOVERY, SONG…” next October 8 and 9,  2016, at the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center of Notre Dame.  It features Notre Dame Vocale prominently as singers will perform diverse roles around Dante’s travel from Hell into Purgatory and then Paradise.

“JOURNEYING THE COMMEDIA: DESERT, DISCOVERY, SONG…” is the third of the Sacred Music Dramas at Notre Dame wit support from the Mellon Foundation, following “I Was Born For This” on the historical impact of Joan of Arc, and “Elijah or the Jewish Artist in the Western World”, featuring Metropolitan Opera baritone Nathan Gunn.

“JOURNEYING LA DIVINA COMMEDIA” counts with the stage direction of Notre Dame’s Professor of Theatre Anton Juan, who explores aspects of the human condition and social justice in his art. The work’s was co-created after a libretto by celebrated Dante scholar Robin Kirkpatrick (University of Cambridge), with further creative input by Notre Dame Dante scholar Vittorio Montemaggi.

Composer Robert Kyr (University of Oregon, Oregon Bach Festival) has been commissioned with a grant from the Ann Stookey Fund for New Music to compose an oratorio the segment of Paradiso that will close the work.

Vocale’s commissioned composer wins award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters

Composer Robert Kyr, who has been commissioned by Notre Dame Vocale to write a new cantata based on Dante’s Paradiso, has been honored with a major award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. Four composers will each receive a $10,000 Arts and Letters Award in Music, which honors outstanding artistic achievement by a composer who has arrived at his or her own voice.  Each will receive an additional $10,000 toward the recording of one work.  The other winners with Robert Kyr are Robert Carl, Sean Shepherd, and Ricardo Zohn-Muldoon. See more.