The Bach Elgar Choir was first established in 1905 as the Elgar Choir. In 1910, the choir
attained international recognition by giving the North American premiere performance of
Verdi's Requiem with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. Then, in 1932, a new choir, the
Bach Choir was formed in Hamilton.
During World War II, however, both choirs
had to temporarily suspend operations
because of the lack of men, most of whom
were serving in the armed forces. Following
the war, the choirs resumed activity, but
again due to a shortage of choristers, they
amalgamated as the Bach Elgar Choir and
have performed for Hamilton and Canadian
audiences ever since.
During the 1969-1970
season, the Bach Elgar Singers, a 36-voice
chamber ensemble was formed. For several years, the Bach Elgar Singers performed
throughout Southern Ontario in their own concert series.
The Bach Elgar Choir is now the premiere symphonic, oratorio chorus in the Hamilton
Region and is the second oldest choral organization in Canada. Our repertoire spans an
eclectic mix of music, which ranges from classics to Broadway, Pops, and Gilbert and
We represented our city at the visit of Prince Charles to Hamilton in 1996,
and in 1997 were the CBC National Choir on Canada Day in Ottawa for HRH Queen
Elizabeth II. We have been regularly featured on programmes of the Hamilton Philharmonic
Orchestra and for a number of years sang with them in the Ontario Place Forum to huge
appreciative audiences. Our outreach to the community has included partnerships with the
Hamilton Spectator for Summer Camps for Kids and with the McMaster Children's Hospital.
Several years ago, we produced a video in cooperation with the City of Hamilton entitled
"Voice of the City" and appeared in a number of live performances of this City of Hamilton
showpiece for the city's guests and VIPs.
The Bach Elgar Choir sponsored and supported the Hamilton Children's Choir and the Vox
Nouveau during their formative years. Graduates from both choirs have joined the ranks of
the Bach Elgar Choir over the years.
In our 2004 - 2005 Season, the Bach Elgar Choir celebrated its 100th year of choral singing
with a performance of Verdi's Requiem and J. S. Bach's masterpiece, St. Matthew Passion.
Our Conductor, Alexander Cann
Our Accompanist, Krista Rhodes