Since its creation in 1992 by conductor Diane Loomer, Chor (Greek for choir) Leoni (Italian for lions) has become a fixture in the upper echelons of the Canadian choral world. A combination of riveting stage presence, imaginative and eclectic programming, quality a cappella singing, and a willingness to “try anything once” has captivated audiences across Canada and guaranteed wildly enthusiastic sell-out crowds wherever the lions appear.
Chor Leoni was a triple winner in the biennial 2002 CBC Radio National Competition for Amateur Choirs. The Choir won first place honours in the Men’s Category, a competition-wide prize for the Best Performance of a Canadian Work, and the top prize in the Contemporary Category, the first time a male choir has won this distinction. The choir previously won top honours in the CBC Radio Competition in the Men’s Category in 1994 and 2000. On the strength of their triple win, the choir was invited to represent the CBC in the European Broadcasting Union’s prestigious Let the Peoples Sing 2003 International Choral Competition. Competing against choirs from twenty-one countries, Chor Leoni was the only North American choir and the only male choir to advance to the finals, placing fourth overall in the Adult Choir category.
Chor Leoni is a Canadian men’s choir of the highest professional standards engaged in exploring, expanding and enriching the male choral repertoire, introducing audiences to the power and beauty of this music, and stimulating the development of male choral singing throughout the world. Through live and recorded performances, national and international tours, participation in festivals and workshops, and by commissioning new works for male choirs, especially by Canadian composers, Chor Leoni creates an inclusive environment in which men committed to these interests can come together to make music.