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History of Musikanten Montana

Musikanten (German for "musicians") was formed by Artistic Director Kerry Krebill in 1979 in Bethesda MD, as a project for her masters degree in choral conducting at the Catholic University of America. In its 31 seasons, the ensemble has made nearly a thousand appearances, including DC area concerts at the National Gallery of Art, the Smithsonian Institution, Kennedy Center, and venues in Pennsylvania, Virginia and Maryland, as well as 19 international tours, including Maestra Krebill's 50th birthday celebration singing Monteverdi's Vespers in Venice with the acclaimed ensemble now known as the Venice Baroque Orchestra. The group continues to perform in the Washington area, appearing each year at a local First Night celebration, singing a traditional Latin Mass at St. Mary's in downtown DC, and to tour; in September 2007 Musikanten made its first foray to South America, performing in Buenos Aires, La Plata and Ayacucho, Argentina.

In June of 2004, Maestra Krebill instituted Helena Choral Week in her new home in Montana, inviting singers from the Helena Symphony Chorale, Musikanten and other ensembles to come together in Helena for an intensive week of rehearsals, concerts, classes and private lessons. Building on the success of this project, Musikanten Montana was established as a new choral chamber ensemble in Helena in September of 2004. The new group's first season included liturgies at St. Peter's Episcopal Cathedral, St. John's Lutheran Church and the Cathedral of St. Helena, culminating in two performances, in Helena and Missoula, of Monteverdi's masterpiece, the Vespers of 1610, as part of the Montana Early Music Festival, which the ensemble sponsored.

Musikanten Montana continues to produce the Montana Early Music Festival, hosting guest performers from across the US. In addition to Monteverdi's Vespri, repertoire has included Handel's Israel in Egypt and Dixit Dominus, Charpentier's Le Reinement du St. Pierre, Buxtehude's Membra Jesu Nostri, Schütz' Musikalisches Exequien, Scarlatti's Stabat Mater, Valls' Missa Scala Aretina, Cavalieri's La Representazione di Anima e di Corpo, Bach's Jesu, meine Freude and his Johannespassion and Hohemesse. Featured performers from the festival's inception have included tenors Kevin Sutton and Steven Soph, sopranos Evanne Browne, Amanda Balestrieri and Heather Barnes, mezzo-soprano Marjorie Bunday, contralto Bailey Whiteman, baritones Brian Ming Chu, Bobb Robinson, Robert W. Tudor, James Shaffran and Joel Lankford and bass-baritone Richard Dirksen, as well as keyboard and continuo artists Gabriel Shuford (harpsichord), John Lenti (lute and theorbo), Brady Lanier (cello and gamba), Chris Stuberg (cello) and organists Keith Reas, Brent Erstad, Denise Finn, Joe Munzenrider and Dale Fleck.

Missoula's popular Brandhout Ensemble (founded in 2003 - under the indomitable leadership of traverso player Katherine Skinner) has also figured prominently in the chamber concerts of MEMF, forming the core of the MEMF Chamber Orchestra, performing both in Helena and Missoula each year and hosting prominent Baroque flute players from around the country.

Besides the Helena Choral Week in June (now attracting singers from all over the US and Argentina) and the spring Montana Early Music Festival, Musikanten Montana continues to sing an annual concert for All Souls, the Advent Lessons and Carols, and Christmas Eve Prelude and Mass at St. Peter's Cathedral. The ensemble also searches out collaborative appearances in the Helena community - in November 2007, the group participated in "Raise the Roof!" - an event celebrating Harper Lee's classic To Kill a Mockingbird, which featured two local actors, the Helena Middle School Voices of Tomorrow and a gospel choir from Great Falls. In August 2009, the ensemble was honored to perform music for "Catch and Release," featuring 4 fly-fisherman on the Boulder River choreographed by Ann Carlson under an American Masterpieces Dance grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Singers from Musikanten Montana continue to venture to Washington DC and further (including the spring 2009 tour to the Baltic capitals and September 2010 to Turkey) to perform with their Washington DC friends. Musikanten Montana invited Argentina conductor Andrés Bugallo to Montana for the 2010 Early Music Festival, continuing on to Washington to conduct the combined Musikanten forces in Schütz' Musikalisches Exequien and Scarlatti's Stabat Mater.


Kerry Krebill

Kim Peachy

Donna Aline
Kathy Bramer
Eileen Brody
Sue Brookhart
Billie Brown
Patty Mazurek
Karen McLean
Lorna McMurray
Kim Peachy
Alex Swaney
Lynn Tarrant
Mary Lou Abbott
Linda Almas
Tanya Anderson
Andrea Bateen
Alane Dallas
Jodie Foley
Jane Horton
Ann Kania
Liz LeLacheur
Michelle Maltese
Pat Mandeville
Jan Novy
Becky Piske
Harlan Shropshire
Marty Thieltges
MJ Williams
Win Youngblood

Dick Brown
Erich Kersten
Paul Pacini
Rob Psurny
Douglas Abbott
Casey Almas
Art Bumgardner
Glen Gleaves
Ron Lee
Gerald Schafer
Gordon Stockstad
Mike Swisher

Administration for 2014-2015 Season

Publicity, Hospitality - Pat Mandeville
Housing - Becky Piske
Auction - Liz LeLacheur, Donna Aline
Fundraisers - Linda Almas
Mailing List - Alane Dallas
Programs - Mimi Stevens, Patty Mazurek
Front of House - Sharon Stockstad
Treasurer - Becky Piske
Website - Galen McKibben,
Online Facilitation - Jane Horton
Photography - Jeff van Tine,
                    Paul Pacini

Memberships and Affiliations

Chorus America Montana Nonprofit Association

Montana Arts Council

Montana State Employees' Charitable Giving Campaign

5294    Musikanten Montana
Choral chamber ensemble sponsors annual Helena Choral
Week, Montana Early Music Festival, presents concerts at
local churches. In residence at St Peter's Episcopal Cathedral.

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Musikanten -- Bringing Great Music to Life!
Musikanten Montana is in residence at St. Peter's Episcopal Cathedral, Helena, Montana.
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