The Washington Men's Camerata is an American men's chorus. It was founded in 1984 by Ned Goldberg, Brad Spencer and a few others who attended Cornell University and were involved in their Glee club, to perform, promote and preserve the legacy of men's choral music. Since 1999, Frank Albinder--who previously served as the Associate Director of Chanticleer (America's only full-time professional vocal ensemble)--has been the Camerata's Music Director. The Camerata seeks to present concerts to the widest possible audience; educate young people and generate interest on their part in choral music; collaborate with orchestras, other ensembles and recording companies in performances and recordings of men's choral repertoire; through the Demetrius Project, the National Repository Library of Men's Choral Music, preserve and share collections of music that are no longer in use; and encourage composers to write music for male chorus by promoting and performing newly composed works for men's chorus.
In addition to its regular concert series, which since 1994 has included annual performances at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Camerata has performed with the National Symphony Orchestra (under the direction of Christopher Hogwood and Marvin Hamlisch, among others) and the National Gallery Orchestra (with George Manos as its Music Director); at the Smithsonian Institution; the Embassy of the Russian Federation; the National Building Museum; Harvard, Princeton, and Rutgers Universities; and the White House. The Camerata has collaborated with artists including soprano Phyllis Bryn-Julson, baritone John Shirley-Quirk, and the Mark Morris Dance Group. Listeners nationwide have heard the Camerata on National Public Radio's All Things Considered, Performance Today and Pipedreams. The group's 1993 CD, Masters In This Hall: Christmas Music for Men's Chorus (Gothic), has enjoyed critical acclaim, frequent airplay, and brisk sales nationwide. A second critically acclaimed recording, Over The Sea to Skye (Gothic), featuring folk songs from around the world, was released in March 1997. The third Camerata CD, The Spirit of Freedom (Gothic), featuring patriotic songs and military anthems, was released in March 1999, prompting The Washington Post's music critic Joseph McLellan to declare that it "is performed at a level that matches the best work of Robert Shaw." Sing We Noel (Gothic), the Camerata's newest Christmas CD, was released in fall 2001. It features Daniel Pinkham's Christmas Cantata and favorite carols from around the world.
The Camerata's newest CD, Brothers, Sing On! Classics for Men's Chorus (Gothic) was released in 2006. It features favorites from the male chorus repertoire, including Franz Biebl's Ave Maria and the songs "Drunken Sailor", "Spaseniye sodelal" and "Vive L'Amour".