Where to find women’s-chorus literature
Most publishers include treble-voice titles in their catalogs, but here are a few with especially wide and appealing selections—and a handful of off-the-beaten path possibilities!
- Treble Clef Press publishes exclusively upper-voice music. Preview pages and sound files of many pieces are available.
- Earthsongs is an excellent source of new and multicultural treble music, along with a few chestnuts. Preview pages and recordings are available for many titles.
- Santa Barbara Music Publishing has an extensive list of titles, many with previews and recordings.
- Alliance Music publishes several hundred treble works, including many multicultural titles.
- Vox Bulgarica has made the music of Le Mystère des Voix Bulgares available to Western women’s choruses! Many titles are available as digital downloads.
- Musica Russica publishes several dozen titles for women’s voices.
- Here’s information on how to find music and arrangements performed by Anonymous 4.
- For something beautiful and unusual, try Artemisia Editions, which publishes works written by Italian nuns of the 16th and 17th centuries to be sung in their convents!
- The wonderful Kitka Women’s Vocal Ensemble offers several songbooks of haunting and gorgeous Eastern-European music at this link.
- Scroll down on this page to find Sweet Honey in the Rock’s songbook; other Sweet Honey favorites can be found through Barnwell’s Notes Publishing.
- Like Deke Sharon’s pop a cappella works? Check out Natural Woman, a collection of ten of his arrangements for women’s voices.
Chorus repertoire lists
The ensembles below maintain online repertoire lists that may be useful as you choose literature for your ensemble; you’ll find works of all different voicings and difficulty levels here.
- Concentus Women’s Chorus
- Cornell University Chorus
- Elektra Women’s Choir
- Grand Rapids Women’s Chorus
- MUSE Cincinnati Women’s Choir
- Orange County Women’s Chorus
- Peninsula Women’s Chorus
- St. Cloud State University Women’s Chorus (PDF)
- Twin Cities Women’s Choir
- Vox Femina
- Oklahoma All-State Women’s Chorus (lists repertoire since 2000; downloads as Excel file)
- Tennessee All-State Women’s Chorale (lists repertoire since 1998)
Here are some great recommendations from admired conductors from a variety of levels across California. They were asked: What one women’s piece would you conduct every year if you could? As you can see, a few of them couldn’t stop at one, proving that these pieces are worth taking a good look at.
Lori Marie Rios – College of the Canyons, CSUF, ACDA Membership & Development Chair, Los Angeles Bach Festival
- Heart, We will forget him-Michael Henigin
- Ave Maria – David MacIntyre
- The Snow – Elgar
- Nigra Sum – Casals
- Schlaf Mein Kind – Allan Naplan
- Hoj, Hura Hoi – Otmar Macha
Keith Hancock – Tesoro High School
- Ouvre ton Coeur – Bizet
- If I Were a Velvet Rose – Memley
Lesley Leighton – Los Robles Master Chorale
- Orpheus with his Lute – Vaughan Williams
- Songs of the Caravan – Betinis
Chelsea Dehn – Chapman University, Foothill High School
- Suite de Lorca- Einojuhani Rautavaara
- Tu agni from the Rig Veda- Holst
- Hymn to the Waters from the Rig Veda- Holst
- Tancnota- Kodaly
- Turot eszik a cigany- Kodaly
- Ave verum corpus- Poulenc
- O salutaris Hostia- Frank Ferko
- Tota pulchra est Maria- Durufle
- I Am Not Yours- David Childs
- Liebesgram- Robert Schuman
- Chorus of the Peasant Girls from Eugene Onegin- Tchaikovsky
Carolyn Teraoka-Brady, San Marcos High School
- Dixit Dominus – Johann Michael Haydn
Rodger Guerrero – Harvard-Westlake High School
- Three Mountain Ballads – Ron Nelson
Other useful links
- Don’t forget ACDA’s Women’s Choir page, which includes repertoire ideas, resource lists, and more.
- Choralnet’s forums have hosted dozens of discussions of treble repertoire over the years; you can find the results (grouped by theme and voicing) at the link.
- Check out the Sister Singers Network, a collective of women’s ensembles “working together to support and enrich the women’s choral movement.”
- The International Alliance for Women in Music is a terrific resource and advocacy organization for women conductors, composers, and performers.
- “By Women, For Women” is a doctoral dissertation—complete with annotated repertoire list—on treble music by women composers (large PDF).
- Visit Primarily A Cappella for a list of available CDs by women’s choruses from around the world.
- Here’s Mary Lycan’s “extremely selective bibliography” of Real Repertoire for Women’s Choirs.
- More from the marvelous Mary: Here’s the handout from her 1998 ACDA interest session “The Proactive Programmer: Basic Research Kit for Women’s Chorus Repertoire” (PDF).
- What else ought to be on this page? Send your suggestions and to let us know how CCDA can be helpful to you!