Dee Gauthier, Conductor
Cantus Femina is Western Michigan University’s premiere women’s chorus. This dynamic group of 32 auditioned voices rehearses from noon to 12:50 p.m. Monday through Thursday. Each year the ensemble performs at WMU as well as in surrounding communities. Cantus Femina has been featured in performances at National Collegiate Choral Organization conventions in 2008 and 2012. The choir was also invited to sing at the ACDA Regional convention in 2012. In October 2004, 2010, and 2014, the choir was selected to sing at the American Choral Directors Association State Convention in Michigan. The choir has performed with the Kalamazoo Symphony Orchestra on three occasions. The most recent performance involved the Kalamazoo Civic Players, the KSO, and Cantus Femina in a collaborative production of Mendelssohn’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream. In the Fall of 2006, the ensemble sang with Tapestry, a professional women’s ensemble from Boston, for Kalamazoo’s Festival of Sacred Music. The chorus also joins the University Chorale and Collegiate Singers in the annual WMU Choral Holiday Concert and the annual Homecoming Choral Showcase.
Cantus Femina sings a wide variety of literature and takes pride in singing newly written contemporary works. The choir’s premiere performances include Celebremus by Ramona Luegen, Cantarcillo de la Virgen by Paul Carey, Ave Maris Stella by Chan Ka Nin, How Can I Keep from Singing and Imagine, arranged for the choir by WMU alumnus Nate Adams. Cantus Femina also celebrated the 100th anniversary of women’s choir at WMU by touring to the Orlando, Florida area in May 2010, which included performances at universities, high schools, and churches. The choir also hosted the Michigan American Choral Directors Association Collegiate Women’s Chorus Festival in April 2002–05.