Over its 44-year history, the Elora Festival has been recognized as one of North America’s signature choral festivals, though it also presents all forms of classical, jazz, folk, and popular music. The Festival’s ensemble-in-residence is The Elora Singers, one of Canada’s finest professional chamber choirs. The choir performs throughout the three weeks of the festival, both in solo concerts and in collaboration with guest artists and ensembles. The Elora Festival and The Elora Singers are both led by Artistic Director Mark Vuorinen.
The Elora Festival has presented such internationally-recognized choirs as the Vancouver Chamber Choir, Chanticleer, Studio de musique ancienne de Montréal, the Trinity College Choir, the State Choir LATVIJA, and vocal ensembles including VOCES8, Cantus, and The Gesualdo Six.
Additional guest artists have included such celebrated luminaries as Canadian Brass, Maureen Forrester, Sarah Slean, Rolston String Quartet, Gordon Lightfoot, Benjamin Appel, Sarah McLachlan, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Andre Laplante, Dame Kiri te Kanawa, Randy Bachman, Ben Heppner, and Natalie MacMaster.
July in January 2023
Featured Artists – The Elora Singers & Katie Schlaikjer
The Elora Singers, an all-professional Grammy- and JUNO-nominated chamber choir was founded in 1980 and is the ensemble-in-residence of the Elora Festival for three weeks each summer. Through a regular concert series, recordings, and touring, The Elora Singers has established a reputation as one of the finest chamber choirs in Canada, renowned for its diverse styles, commitment to Canadian repertoire, and collaborations with other Canadian and international artists.
Mark Vuorinen is Artistic Director and Conductor of The Elora Singers and The Elora Festival and Waterloo Region’s Grand Philharmonic Choir. He is also Associate Professor and Chair of Music at Conrad Grebel University College at the University of Waterloo.
Mark was the 2016 Laureate of the Ontario Arts Council’s Leslie Bell Prize, and received a National Choral Award from Choral Canada for his research on Estonian composer Arvo Pärt. Mark holds a Doctor of Musical Arts degree from the University of Toronto and a Master of Music degree from Yale University’s School of Music and Institute of Sacred Music.
Katie Schlaikjer is a recognized quartet player, performer, and teacher. She became a member of the Colorado Quartet in 2009 and joined the faculty of the University of Connecticut in 2010. Katie received her Doctoral and Master’s degrees from Stony Brook University and her Bachelor’s degree from the New England Conservatory. Her principal teachers have included Timothy Eddy, Laurence Lesser and Andres Diaz. Her cello was made by Paolo Castello in Genoa in 1775.