About the Bellevue Chamber Chorus
Founded in 1984 in Bellevue, Washington, and led by Artistic Director, Ben Luedcke, Bellevue Chamber Chorus exists to bring beauty and artistic inspiration to the community through the choral arts. The chorus – consisting of 28–30 auditioned singers of diverse backgrounds – performs 3 major concerts each season, encompassing a variety of choral literature from classical standards and contemporary works, to “world music”, Broadway hits, and vocal jazz.
The chorus often joins other ensembles in performances of major choral/orchestral works, such as:
- Mozart: Vespers and Requiem
- Faure: Requiem
- Verdi: Requiem
- Handel: Messiah
- Orff: Carmina Burana
- Brahms: A German Requiem
- Rutter: Mass of the Children
- Ramirez: Misa por la Paz y la Justicia (Mass for Peace and Justice)
The ensemble has premiered works by regional composers, including:
- Commissioned works for the Washington State Centennial Celebration
- The grand opening of the Theatre at Meydenbauer Center
- A special 20th anniversary season commissioned piece, “That Music Always Round Me” by Seattle composer, John Muehleisen
- Participation in commissioning consortiums for works by Andre Thomas, Eric Whitacre, and Ola Gjeilo
We have released three CDs:
- “Timeframes” (2000)
- “Retrospective: 20th Anniversary Season” (2005)
- “Christmas Visions, Winter Dreams” (2013)
And took our entire 2020-2021 concert season online:
- Bellevue Chamber Chorus’ 2020-2021 Season Playlist on YouTube
Bellevue Chamber Chorus tours often and has performed in a variety of well-known and international venues, including:
- Carnegie Hall, New York City
- Salzburg Cathedral, Salzburg, Austria
- Plaza San Marco, Venice, Italy
- The Sydney Opera House, Sydney, Australia
- The Kathaumixw International Choral Festival in Powell River, British Columbia, winning 1st Place in the Adult Mixed Chorus Category in 2008 (see our press release)
- In the Provence and Aveyron areas of France, as part of the Festival International Choral en Provence
Other special performances have included:
- The Leavenworth International Choral Festival
- The international “Rolling Requiem” in memory of September 11
- One of the regional choruses in the NEA-sponsored American Masterpieces Choral Festival in Seattle
- Part of the Okanogan Choral Society’s concert series in Kelowna, B.C.
- One of six choirs performing in a special GSCC event “Welcome Home Morten Lauridsen”
- Approximately half of our members have been singing with us for at least 10 years.
- There have been two official “Bellevue Chamber Chorus Days” proclaimed by the Mayor of the City of Bellevue, Washington: May 30, 2009 and April 14, 2019.
- We are one of five Eastside choral groups that sponsor the annual Eastside Sings sing-along program.
Bellevue Chamber Chorus has active memberships in the Bellevue Downtown Association, Greater Seattle Choral Consortium (GSCC) and Chorus America, and is supported in part by the Bellevue Arts Commission and 4Culture.
About Ben Luedcke, Artistic Director
Ben Luedcke is the choir director at Seattle First Baptist Church in downtown Seattle and was recently promoted as the new Minister of Music. He is currently finishing his Doctorate of Musical Arts at University of Washington, studying with Dr. Geoffrey Boers and Dr. Giselle Wyers, and he has held teaching positions in the choral, musicology, and English departments.
Before moving to Washington, Ben was a Visiting Assistant Professor at Monmouth College where he conducted the Monmouth Chorale and chamber choir, and taught music theory, music appreciation, and voice. Ben has also served as faculty at Grinnell College, where he conducted both the Grinnell Singers and the Grinnell Oratorio Society, and taught an introduction to music theory and voice.
Ben is known in Madison, Wisconsin for several of his startup organizations: he was the co-founder and director of Voces Aestatis, a Wisconsin-based professional choir that specialized in the a cappella repertoire of the sixteenth century. Likewise, Ben was the founder and artistic director of Madison Summer Choir, a community chorus that performed large orchestral works. Finally, Ben was the founder and conductor of University of Wisconsin Men’s Choir, a student and community chorus.
Ben completed his Masters of Arts in choral conducting at the University of Iowa where he studied with Dr. Timothy Stalter, and he holds a Bachelor of Music Education from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. He lives in Seattle with his wife, Vanessa, and their two dogs, Luthor and Oona.
About Kristine Anderson, Accompanist
Kristine Anderson graduated with a music degree from the University of Montana at Missoula. She is well-known in the Puget Sound region for her artistic and sensitive work with singers as well as instrumentalists ranging from tuba to piccolo. Equally at home with jazz, pop, and classical, she can adjust her style from Sondheim to Gershwin to Strauss.
Her clients include winners in local and national competitions, including the Seattle Young Artist Music Festival, Metropolitan Opera semifinals, and concerto contests. Kristine also serves as accompanist for the Flute and Piccolo Forum, hosted by Seattle Symphony flutist Zart Dombourian Eby. In the fall of 2010, Kristine accompanied a former Flute Forum attendee, Justin Lee, on his Western Washington tour after he won the Ladies Musical Club contest.
In addition to holding two church-pianist positions in Seattle, she was music director for the Seattle Musical Theater, formerly known as Civic Light Opera, during their production of High Society, and the pianist for the Seattle Opera Guild’s Preview shows. In 2012 she became an employee in the University of Washington Music Department and a staff accompanist. She has been the accompanist for Bellevue Chamber Chorus for the past twelve seasons. In addition to the Bellevue Chamber Chorus, she accompanies the choir at North Seattle College.