Who We Are
The Evanston Children’s Choir is a dynamic platform for "diversity in harmony," creating a transformative experience for young choir members from all walks of life and their varied audiences across Chicagoland. With a commitment to inclusion and accessibility, positive energy and mutual respect, the ECC enables children and young adults grades 1 through 12 to sing their hearts out in several strong, supportive ensembles—ensembles with a solid and growing reputation for musical excellence. Our Core Program is an after-school treble choir program, accepting young people grades 1 through high school from all over the Greater Chicago area. We also have a community choir available for all ages and mixed voice types called "Family Choir." We sing all types of both secular and sacred music, with an emphasis on multiculturalism. We strive to make the choir as accessible as possible, both to new members and to our audience. Accordingly, we do not turn any child away because of money, and we offer our outreach performances and self-produced concerts free of charge.
The ECC has performed in major venues including the Rosemont Theatre, Evanston’s Alice Millar Chapel, and the Harris Theater in Chicago’s Millennium Park. The ECC has grown from a mere three singers at its inception to a multi-tiered program that continues to expand. ECC ensembles are regularly sought after for collaborations and have shared the stage with the likes of the Apollo Chorus of Chicago, the Evanston Symphony, Barry Manilow, S.O.U.L. Creations, the Chicago Philharmonic, the Ondas Ensemble and the North Shore Choral Society. All the while, since its founding in 2002, the ECC has remained committed to its roots, serenading Evanstonians young and old in free outreach performances at schools and community centers.
The 2019-2020 Season started strong in our Fall Semester, combining traditional recurring performances with new collaborations. The Concert Choir made its annual appearance at two favorite Holiday events, the Downtown Evanston Tree Lighting (including an appearance at The Merion) and the Evanston Symphony Holiday Concert, followed by our own gala all-ECC Holiday Concert at Alice Millar Chapel on December 15th. Two days later the Concert Choir joined forces with our newest group, the Wilmette Pops Children’s Chorale (a joint venture with the Wilmette Park District), for another Holiday Concert at Wilmette’s Community Recreation Center.
Our momentum carried into 2020 with a full head of steam, especially concerning two of our newer groups. Our fledgling Wilmette Pops choir ballooned from 7 kids to 18, and Story Choir filled to capacity for the first time! Concert Choir kicked off the year by celebrating MLK Day with the City of Evanston, and immediately immersed itself in Terra Nostra, a challenging modern work by rising star composer Stacy Garrop for Alice Millar Chapel's Birthday Concert on February 9th. The recording of this performance, which saw our debut with the Northwestern University Symphony Orchestra and the Alice Millar Chapel Choir, was selected for broadcast by WFMY, 98.7 FM on April 22nd (Earth Day). All of our Choirs were thriving with great energy and getting ready for our next round of performances in the spring when... you know what happened. The spread of the coronavirus reached global pandemic proportions and shut down, well, everything.
As of March 13th, 2020 the ECC officially suspended all rehearsal and performance activity, and as of March 28th we officially canceled the remainder of our 2019-2020 Season. This was heartbreaking to be sure, but the joys and successes we experienced up to that point are going to stay with us and carry us through. We are a strong community of singers, families, fans and supporters, and we are not going anywhere! We're just "sheltering in place" for a little while, probably just like you. As we do so, we on the ECC Board and staff would like to express out deepest gratitude to the countless choir families and friends who have so generously reached out to support us during this crisis, and keep us in a strong position as we boldly look to restarting this Fall Semester 2020. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts! Please watch for updates on news about our 2020-2021 Season. And stay safe, everyone.
Our primary rehearsal location is the Noyes Cultural Arts Center, 927 Noyes St., Studio 107, in Evanston. The ECC's Choirs for the 2019-2020 Season are: Concert Choir (advanced), Youth Chorale (beginner-intermediate), "Story Choir" (grades 1-5), "Family Choir," which anyone can join (adults too!), and the Wilmette Pops Children's Chorale (beginner-intermediate). You can read more about each Choir here.
The Evanston Chioldren's Choir has received the Mayor's Award for the Arts.
The ECC is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.