Edmonton’s Belle Canto Women’s Choir, founded in 1991 by conductor Heather Johnson, is regarded as one of Canada’s leading women’s choral ensembles. Originally a group of university students, the choir now consists of amateur singers from all walks of life. The women of the choir are committed to performing music specifically written for treble voices and they share a common interest in performing this music at the highest professional standards.
The choir is particularly well-known for their adventurous programming, their stunning ability to sing in a wide variety of languages, and their full use of the women’s vocal palette. Their two CD recordings – Sing! (2010) and Invocation (2006) – feature many of the works by Eastern European and Scandinavian composers that form the core of the choir’s repertoire. Much of this music has seldom been recorded or performed by choirs in North America, and it has been our sincere pleasure to share these works with our audiences.
Since its inception, Belle Canto has established a reputation rich in awards and national and international appearances. The choir has been invited to perform in numerous international choral competitions and festivals including the Llangollen International Eisteddfod (Llangollen, Wales 2016) the Johannes Brahms International Choral Festival (2nd place, Wernigerode, Germany 2013), the Seghizzi International Choral Competition (2nd place, Gorizia, Italy, 2010), the Cork International Choral Festival (2nd place, Cork, Ireland, 2007) and the 3rd Annual International Choral Olympics (2nd place, Bremen, Germany, 2003). Multiple first place awards in the biennial Canadian National Choral Competition for Amateur Choirs have further solidified the choir’s place as a leader in the world of women’s voices.