The Goshen Community Chorale enjoys a long and distinguished history, with its roots going back to 1965, with the establishment of the Goshen Community Chorus by Dwight Weldy. It was succeeded in 1983 by the Goshen Oratorio Chorus, led by Doyle Preheim, and which became incorporated as the Goshen Community Chorale in 1989. During much of its more recent history the Chorale has been directed by Lee Dengler, whose retirement in 2014 led to the appointment of William Mateer. Upon William Mateer’s retirement in 2021, the board appointed Bradley Kauffman as conductor.
The purpose of the Chorale is to prepare and present high quality choral music, both to enrich the cultural life of our community and to afford local singers the opportunity to perform together. The Chorale typically performs choral masterworks twice a year, often with orchestral accompaniment. Over its thirty-four year history the Chorale has sung music from the Renaissance through the 21st century and has performed in concert halls and churches throughout Elkhart County. In recent years the following works have been featured:
- J.S. Bach – Cantate 191: Gloria in Excelsis Deo
- J.S. Bach – Cantate 106: Gottes Zeit ist der allebeste Zeit
- Barnett – The World Beloved: A Bluegrass Mass
- Carissimi – Plorate filii Israel
- Charpentier – Misse de Minuit pour Noël
- Durante/Pegolesi – Magnificat
- Garcia – Tota pulchra es Maria
- Martini – Domine, ad adjuvandum me festina
- Mozart – Coronation Mass
- Mozart – Requiem
- Mozart – Te Deum
- Ramirez – Missa Criolla
- Ramirez – Navidad Nuestra
As part of its activities the Chorale has collaborated with numerous other organizations, including the Elkhart County Symphony Orchestra, the Elkhart County Symphony Chorus, Bethany Christian High School, Goshen High School, the Children’s Choir of Michiana, the Toledo Symphony Orchestra, choirs from Goshen College, the Latin American Culture and Language Center of Goshen and the Maple City Community Orchestra.
The Chorale is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, governed by a nine person board of trustees, and is supported by member dues, grant funding from the Indiana Arts Commission and the generosity of donors and supporters.
The Chorale welcomes new members who have a background in choral singing and who wish to commit themselves to regular attendance at rehearsals and to learning challenging repertoire. A special “Choral Scholars” program to support the participation of high school students with superior ability and maturity is an important part of the Chorale’s operations.