THE ATLANTA OPERA CHORUS
"Walter Huff's Atlanta Opera Chorus can be compared to the best opera choruses in the world."
- Arthur Fagen, Atlanta Opera Music Director
No production would be complete without The Atlanta Opera Chorus. Widely regarded as one of the top opera choruses in the country, The Atlanta Opera Chorus auditions yearly, and performs in each of the mainstage operas of the season. Led by Chorus Master Walter Huff, the singers are an integral part of each performance.
About The Atlanta Opera Chorus
The Atlanta Opera Chorus Bio (PDF)
The Atlanta Opera Chorus has been under the direction of Chorus Master Walter Huff since 1988.
Known for its skilled, well-coached singers, The Atlanta Opera Chorus is a training program for Atlanta-area singers, and serious vocal students at Georgia-area colleges and universities. Atlanta Opera Chorus members are highly touted for their technical training and acting skills, and have been showcased in traditional operatic productions, as well as contemporary and more off-beat operas, such as Philip Glass’s Akhnaten; Wagner’s dark and stormy The Flying Dutchman; Gluck’s Orfeo & Euridice; a critically praised showcase of Carmina burana and Pagliacci, and a modern staging of Carmen in 1992.
In 1996, The Atlanta Opera Chorus performed Gershwin’s Of Thee I Sing as part of the Cultural Olympiad during the Centennial Olympic Games. In 2008, The Atlanta Opera Chorus, under Mr. Huff’s direction, sang 21 critically acclaimed performances of Porgy and Bess at Opéra-Comique in Paris and on tour in Granada, Normandy, and Luxembourg.
Esteemed alumni of The Atlanta Opera Chorus are now performing at the Metropolitan Opera and other opera stages around the world. Notable alumni include bass Richard Bernstein, baritone Scott Hogsed, bass Jason Hardy, tenor Richard Clement, and the late tenor Ryan Smith, among others.
Members of The Atlanta Opera Chorus were featured on P.D.Q. Bach’s Oedipus Tex and Other Choral Calamities, which won a Grammy® Award for best comedy recording in 1990. The Chorus also can be heard on a recording of Mozart’s Requiem, recorded at St. Philips Cathedral in Atlanta, GA in 1997.
About Walter Huff
Walter Huff has been Chorus Master for The Atlanta Opera since 1988, preparing the chorus in more than 80 productions. He received degrees in music from the Oberlin and Peabody Conservatories and studied piano with Sarah Martin, Peter Takacs, Lillian Freundlich, and voice with Flore Wend. He has performed with singers throughout Europe and the United States and served as coach with the Peabody Opera Theatre and Washington National Opera. Mr. Huff has performed in master classes given by renowned singers and pianists such as Sir Peter Pears, Licia Albanese, Eileen Farrell, Dalton Baldwin, Leon Fleisher, and Elly Ameling. In 1984, he received Tanglewood’s C.D. Jackson Master Award for Excellence, presented by Seiji Ozawa and the Boston Symphony Orchestra. He has been Music Director for Georgia State University Opera and Actor’s Express (Atlanta, GA). Mr. Huff was one of four Atlanta artists chosen for the first Loridans Arts Awards, given to Atlanta artists who have made exceptional contributions to the arts life of Atlanta over a long period of time. In 2008, The Atlanta Opera Chorus under Mr. Huff’s direction sang critically acclaimed performances of Porgy and Bess at Opéra-Comique in Paris and on tour in Granada, Normandy, and Luxembourg. Mr. Huff also has served as Chorus Master for Faust and Der Rosenkavalier with San Diego Opera. Huff has been the Music Director for The Atlanta Opera High School Opera Institute, a nine-month training program for talented, classically-trained high school singers.
Meet Walter Huff (Video)
The Atlanta Opera Holiday Concert
One of their most popular events is The Atlanta Opera Holiday Concert. This event has occurred for the last three years, and features performers who are either currently singing in the chorus, or have been members in the past. The eight performers are selected by Walter Huff not only for their talent as soloists, but also because they have a remarkable ability to blend with the other voices. This small, yet extremely talented ensemble creates a concert unrivaled by anything else in Atlanta during the holidays.
The Atlanta Opera Chorus in the News
11.27.11 - WXIA 11-Alive - Atlanta Opera Chorus Member Megan Mashburn sings on The Chat Room TV
02.25.11 – Creative Loafing – After Blazing through the City of Light, The Atlanta Opera Brings Porgy Back Home
11.14.08 - AJC - Why I love my job: Walter Huff, Chorus Master, Atlanta Opera