ANIMA (formerly the Glen Ellyn Children's Chorus) celebrates its 50th anniversary with the 2014-15 season. One of the leading children and youth choral organizations in North America, its rich heritage has served as an artistic and educational model for many years. Recent national awards include the 2013 ASCAP Adventurous Programming award from Chorus America, the 2013 Tribute Award from Chicago A cappella, the 2013 Non Profit of the Year Award from the Glen Ellyn Chamber of Commerce, the 2009 Dale Warland Singers Commission Award from Chorus America and the American Composers Forum, and the once-in-an-organizational lifetime Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence from Chorus America in 2008.
The Chorus is dedicated to transforming young lives through excellence in music education and choral singing. Its five ensembles serve children from over 35 different Chicagoland communities, with outreach programs reaching 1000 additional children annually. International tours have taken the Chorus to six continents, most recently working with composers Stephen Hatfield and Imant Raminsh in British Columbia (June 2014) and Alaska. Anima (AH-nee-mah) is the Latin word for breath, life, soul, spirit.
Performing frequently with Chicago's major musical organizations, ANIMA's singers have performed under many of the world's most eminent conductors including Bernard Haitink, Semyon Bychkov, John Nelson, Jane Glover, Christoph Eschenbach, Claudio Abbado, James Levine, Charles Dutoit, and Georg Solti. Also committed to new music, ANIMA has commissioned 75 new works for young voices in its 50 year history. ANIMA was the first children's chorus in America to be recognized and funded by the National Endowment for the Arts for the professionalism of its work and captured four Grammy awards for its performances with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under Sir Georg Solti.
Season highlights include these performances of Ravel's L'Enfant et les Sortileges with CSO, performances of Orff's Carmina Burana with Chicago Sinfonietta, a holiday concert at Ravinia, a special performance with the Soul Children of Chicago, a gala 50th anniversary concert on June 6th at the College of DuPage Arts Center Mainstage with the Elmhurst Symphony, an invited performance for the Michigan Choral Directors' Conference, and many other appearances throughout Chicagoland.