Please join us for a special concert of sacred and secular music. A free program sponsored by Music & Senior Ministries of Community UMC.


History of Chatham Choral Ensemble

The Chatham Choral Ensemble, founded in 1991 by Director, Charles T. Hayes, is a collection of highly qualified musical professionals including college-level music majors, local church soloists, music educators, and professional opera singers.  The 25-member ensemble performs a wide variety of musical styles, including sacred and secular music from the Renaissance through the 21st century.  Members have studied music at such prestigious institutions as Westminster Choir College, Northwestern University, Chicago Musical College at Roosevelt University, Peabody Conservator of Music, Illinois Wesleyan University, Morgan State University and DePaul University.  In September 2016 the Chatham Choral Ensemble became the Artist in Residence of University Church in Hyde Park.

In 2001, the Chatham Choral Ensemble disbanded when its Director and one of its founding members moved to Baltimore for a career opportunity.  Upon his return to Chicago in 2012, members of the original Ensemble lovingly pressured Charles to resume the group.  After a couple of pop-up performances in 2013 upon hearing the amazing tones and the blend of as few as six voices, it was settled.  Sunday, October 13, 2013 marked the official return of the Chatham Choral Ensemble.

Notable accomplishments include:

  • A 10-day European tour of Austria, Germany and Switzerland; including concert performances and visits to many buildings and areas of musical historical significance, including the Mozarteum, Schonbrunn Palace in Vienna; as well as touring several of the locations where “The Sound of Music” was filmed.
  • Regular guests of the R. Nathaniel Dett Club of Music & Allied Arts and the Chicago Music Association, Branch #1, the National association of Negro Musicians programs
  • Cal-Hall Artist Bureau Black History Month program, Fine Arts Building
  • Opening ceremonies, Industrial Distribution convention for 3,000 American and Canadian businessmen at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel/Towers
  • Annual C.F. Stradford Award Ceremony; presentation by State’s Attorney Richard A. Devine to Senator Carol Mosley Braun
  • Sacred Works of Duke Ellington at Christ Universal Temple
  • Sacred of Tarsus,” a sacred opera by Betty Jackson King
  • “Hope for Life” Television Show
  • Chicago Three Tenors concerts
  • The 2016 National Association of Teachers of Singing Convention entitled Walk Together Children – a NATS Camp Meeting
  • Regular guest artists for programs at University Church, Chatham Fields Evangelical Lutheran Church, Ebenezer Baptist Church, Grant Memorial AME Church, Morgan Park Presbyterian Church and many, many others.