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For Immediate Release: April 29, 2011

Contact: Jen Rogers, 480-204-0101
Box Office: 602-253-2224

Surpasses spring fund drive goal of “$60k in 30 Days”
Funds from campaign designated towards new Phoenix Chorale
recording featuring the music of composer Ola Gjeilo

(Phoenix, AZ) On Sunday, April 17, 2011, the Grammy Award-winning Phoenix Chorale closed their concert season and ended their second annual spring fund drive raising $69,000 in thirty days. The organization-wide campaign involved singers, administrative staff and board members and began on March 19, 2011, with a goal of raising $60,000.

“All I can say is wowie! We are completely overwhelmed by the outpouring of support,” said Charles Bruffy, Artistic Director. “Thanks to the success of this campaign, we are officially able to proceed with our new recording. We offer our sincere gratitude and deepest thanks for everyone’s help in making it possible for us to create a new and permanent artistic contribution to the universe.”

Funds raised from the spring campaign are designated towards the Phoenix Chorale’s new recording project which features the music of Ola Gjeilo, the Chorale’s Composer-in-Residence during the 2009-10 Season. The Chorale has commissioned and premiered several works by Mr. Gjeilo including Phoenix, Dark Night of the Soul, and Evening Prayer and has featured the composer’s music over the past four seasons. The recording is scheduled over Memorial Day Weekend in May 2011.

“Of the $69,000 raised, over 86% was raised by the singers. This is a true testament of their loyalty to the organization – it also reflects their desire to get back to recording,” said Joel Rinsema, Executive Director. “In this day and age when professional performing arts organizations are suffering financially and you see management and musicians not on the same page, having this effort led by our singers, well, it shows true ownership of the organization.”

This season’s spring fund drive, “$60k in 30 Days,” was an organization-wide effort, primarily led by the Phoenix Chorale’s singers, and utilized personal appeals along with social media – Facebook and Twitter – and the online fundraising tool, DoJiggy, to make it possible to close the campaign with $69,000. Last season’s spring fund drive, “$30k in 30 Days,” was also an organization-wide campaign that reached 10% of the goal within the first day and surpassed the goal by the 28th day, with a final total raised of over $42,000.

“Honestly, I wasn’t sure if we would make the goal. I mean, we doubled the goal from last year’s campaign,” said Kevin Kriegel, Singer Representative and tenor in the Chorale. “And even though we were successful last year, I have to admit I was skeptical. It has been pretty amazing to see the commitment from singers and staff to this campaign’s success, and to see the astounding response from our Phoenix community and from across the country.”

About the Phoenix Chorale: The Grammy Award-winning Phoenix Chorale is regarded as one of the finest professional choral ensembles in America and is equally dedicated to the creation and performance of new music, which it intermingles with more traditional concert literature. Audiences around the world have been treated to the sounds of the Chorale through live performances across the United States and in Canada, and in live broadcasts and recordings on radio stations across the globe. In 2004, the Phoenix Chorale became the first North American choir to release an album on Chandos Records, one of the largest independent classical record labels in the world.  The Phoenix Chorale’s newest solo recording, Spotless Rose, was released in September 2008, and received a Grammy Award nomination for ‘Best Classical Album,’ and won a Grammy for ‘Best Small Ensemble Performance.’ Rheinberger: Sacred Choral Works is the Phoenix Chorale’s third joint-recording in a series of albums on the Chandos Record label with the Kansas City Chorale and received two Grammy Award nominations including ‘Best Choral Performance’ and ‘Best Surround Sound.’ Two other joint-recordings have been released on Chandos Records, the first in the series is Eternal Rest (2005) followed by Grechaninov: Passion Week which received Grammy Award nominations in 2007 including ‘Best Classical Album,’ ‘Best Choral Performance,’ ‘Best Surround Sound Album,’ and won a Grammy Award for ‘Best Engineered Album, Classical.’ In its 51-year history, the Phoenix Chorale’s conductors have included Millicent Wesley (the Chorale’s first conductor from 1958), Wallace Hornibrook, Dan Durand, Vance George, Anders Öhrwall, Jon Washburn, and Charles Bruffy. The Phoenix Chorale, ensemble-in-residence at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral in downtown Phoenix, is sponsored in part through grants and funding from Cathedral Arts, Arizona Commission on the Arts, the City of Phoenix’s Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, the National Endowment for the Arts, and Quail Distributing. More information is available at

About Ola Gjeilo: The music of Norwegian composer and pianist Ola Gjeilo (b. 1978) has been performed and recorded in more than 30 countries worldwide in venues including New York’s Carnegie Hall, Avery Fisher Hall and Alice Tully Hall, Los Angeles’ Disney Hall, Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center, Miami’s Knight Concert Hall and Jackie Gleason Theatre, the Copenhagen Opera House, and the National Galleries in London and Washington D.C. His music has been featured on PBS in America, and on all the major Scandinavian TV channels. Mr. Gjeilo (pronounced Yay-lo) has been commissioned by several ensembles, musicians and others worldwide, including Barbara Bonney, Solveig Kringelborn, Atle Sponberg, Philip Brunelle, the Edvard Grieg Society, St. Olaf College, Luther College, Ensemble Mendelssohn, and Chorale Arts Ensemble. His choral music has also been performed by elite choirs including the Kansas City Chorale, Conspirare, World Youth Choir, VocalEssence, Mogens Dahl Chamber Choir, BYU Singers, Norwegian Soloists’ Choir, and the Swedish Broadcasting Corporation’s Radiokoren. After studying for his Bachelor’s Degree at the Norwegian Academy College of Music in Oslo, the Royal College of Music in London, and the Juilliard School in New York, he completed his Master’s Degree in composition at Juilliard in 2006.  His publishers include Walton Music (US), Gehrmans (Sweden), and Musikk-Huset (Norway).  Walton Music became the exclusive publisher of his choral music in 2007.  Mr. Gjeilo’s first solo piano recording, Stone Rose, was released in 2007 and is available in stores worldwide. Ola Gjeilo is the Phoenix Chorale’s first composer-in-residence and his music will be featured throughout the 2009-10 Season.

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