Vasari Singers was founded in 1980 and is regarded as one of the leading chamber choirs in Britain. Under the direction of its founder-conductor Jeremy Backhouse, Vasari Singers performs a wide range of repertoire from Renaissance to contemporary.
The choir sings regularly at major concert venues and other locations in London and elsewhere, including abroad, having enjoyed tours to Spain, the Baltic states and Italy in recent years. Cathedral residencies are an important part of the choir’s year and the choir is heard frequently on Classic FM and BBC Radio 3.
Two crucial foundation stones of the choir’s history have been the commissioning of new choral works and making recordings: Vasari’s extensive discography includes a large collection of premiere recordings, many of which are of works commissioned by Vasari Singers, as well as two collections of Christmas music. Most of the choir’s recordings feature 20th and 21st century composers and many have received high acclaim, achieving chart successes and similar recommendations. One such recent review by Choir and Organ described Vasari Singers as ‘outstanding, gifted and deeply musical’.
During the moratorium on live choral singing in 2019 and 2020, Vasari turned its attention to online activities, successfully engaging with a worldwide audience through virtual performances and choral workshops. Notable amongst these were a film on french composer Marcel Dupré, praised as ‘one of the best pandemic-driven virtual performances’ and the online launch concert for its latest recording ‘Heaven full of Stars’. Released on the Naxos label, this attractive album features celestial music by contemporary composers. It received high critical acclaim, with one reviewer writing: ‘the whole programme is mesmerising and the performances are exquisite—perfect intonation, blend, expression, musicality, and sheer beauty of choral sound.’
“This talented and versatile choir deserves praise not only for its skilful singing but also for commissioning work that refreshes the British choral repertoire.”
Stephen PritchardThe Guardian