Grass Valley:  What better way to welcome warm Spring days than with great choral music? InConcert Sierra presents the Sierra Master Chorale, conducted by Alison Skinner, on Sunday May 21 and Tuesday, May 23. 

Sierra Master Chorale

The Sierra Master Chorale and chamber orchestra will explore the variety of sounds, textures, and effects produced by choral composers over the centuries. From the enchanting, single-line chant, Karitas, by the first known woman composer of Western music, Hildegaard von Bingen (1098-1179), the choir and orchestra journey reveals great works through the Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic and 20th Century Eras, and into the current time.

Some of the exemplary works on the program include two excerpts from Vivaldi’s “Beatus Vir” for string orchestra with oboes: “In Memoria” and “Paratum cor Ejus,” Mozart’s “Sancta Maria,” Beethoven’s “Elegischer Gesang,” Bruckner’s “Tantum Ergo,” Nance’s “Set me as a Seal,” and Ola Gjeilo’s “Sacred Heart” for string orchestra and eight-part choir.

“We will conclude our musical journey with a mid-century anthem, “O How Amiable,” by famous, mid-20th century English composer Ralph Vaughan Williams, for string orchestra and choir.  Beautiful and satisfying chord progressions make this song a fitting ending to our journey through the ages,” said Skinner.

The SMC is an auditioned high-level community choir founded in 2008. The choir rehearses for 13 weeks prior to the performances, plus two rehearsals with the chamber orchestra, which will consist of 16 local and regional professional musicians from the InConcert Sierra Orchestra, including ICS Artistic Director/pianist Ken Hardin.

“This cycle has been difficult due to untimely snowstorms that caused us to cancel and reschedule several rehearsals. It’s all worth it though, because the music is so beautiful, uplifting and fulfilling,” said Steve Mendoza, tenor.

Alison Skinner has been the choral director for the Sierra Master Chorale since May 2019. She has a Master of Music in choral conducting from Temple University and a Bachelor of Arts in music from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Skinner belongs to the American Choral Directors Association and Chorus America. She is also the artistic director and conductor of the Davis Chorale.

InConcert Sierra is a Nevada County nonprofit organization that presents concerts featuring the world’s leading and emerging classical musicians, and produces its own Sierra Master Chorale and InConcert Sierra Orchestra concerts, as well as robust educational programs for all ages. Since its inception in 1946, ICS continues to foster a vibrant arts and culture scene in the region.

For more information, call 530-273-3990 or please visit


What: InConcert Sierra presents Sierra Master Chorale 

When: 2pm, Sunday, May 21, 2023 and 7:30pm Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Where: Seventh-day Adventist Church, 12889 Osborne Hill Road, Grass Valley

Tickets: $48 general (Sun); $38 (Tues) – Youth (5-17) free with adult available online at or call 530-273-3990