GEL FOCUS: Anima-Young Singers of Greater Chicago

Anima - Young Singers of Greater Chicago

Anima - Young Singers of Greater Chicago (formerly the Glen Ellyn Children’s Chorus) has a 45 year history of providing young people with rich musical experiences and extraordinary music education. Anima will be performing throughout the Glen Ellyn area in the next 2 months.

Upcoming Anima events include:

- the annual holiday concert, “Stars of Wonder” on December 19th at both 4pm and 7pm at Wentz Concert Hall in Naperville;

- the younger choristers singing at the Glen Ellyn Library on November 27th for the annual Celebrate the Season;

- Chamber Ensemble singing on December 8th outside of Teas and Toes at 5:45 pm for the Glen Ellyn Ladies Night Out for shopping;

- Chamber Ensemble singing on December 12th at both Borders and Whole Foods in Rice Lake Square between 1:30 and 3:00 pm.

Anima’s new Christmas CD, “An Anima Christmas” will also be on sale at most of these events.

Their mission is “to provide experiences of excellence through choral singing that enliven and shape young lives.” Anima is available to all young people who like to sing.

From singing beautiful, complicated repertoire with the world’s most famous conductors in amazing venues, to singing with a local group for a small church in a poor neighborhood, choristers learn to strive for excellence in everything they do. They learn music from many different cultures and the stories behind them, and regularly travel to other countries where they share their music and expand their horizons. These young people share their love of music and their open hearts with everyone they touch, from every walk of life and leave with a new respect for the world and its people.

Anima was founded in 1964 and grew to international prominence as the Glen Ellyn Children’s Chorus. In 2008 the chorus changed its name to Anima-Young Singers of Greater Chicago to more accurately reflect the geographic area and age (kindergarten through high school) of the choristers. Anima is acknowledged as a pioneer in its field, creating innovative concerts, commissioning new repertoire from major composers, and demonstrating that young people are capable of extraordinary accomplishments when given exceptional leadership and vision.

Anima has been recognized as a leader in its field for decades. The Chorus has performed with the most acclaimed conductors and the renowned Chicago Symphony Orchestra (CSO) almost since its inception. It has participated in 4 Grammy Award-winning recordings with the CSO. Anima has toured throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe, Scandinavia, Australia/New Zealand, Brazil, China, and South Africa and is known for showcasing a broad spectrum of fine music by major composers, as well as commissioning new works, many of which are now part of the standard repertoire for young choirs.

Artistic excellence, innovative programming, world-class performance opportunities, professional caliber concerts … these are things for which Anima is known. But it is about more than just music, Anima is dedicated to providing experiences of excellence to young people, recognizing this will transfer to other areas of their lives. Choristers learn discipline, teamwork, tolerance, increase their self-esteem and their confidence and learn to embrace other cultures. Anima is proud to play a role in building character among our youth, creating the leaders of tomorrow and serving the larger community through song.

Anima — a world class organization — is in your backyard! Most people do not recognize the extraordinary caliber of musical education and performance opportunity the organization provides. As is often the case, the people closest to you are the ones who do not recognize what they have right in their own area, right here in Glen Ellyn.

Anima welcomes all children who like to sing, kindergarten-age through twelfth grade without regard to previous experience or to their socio-economic situation. The chorus looks for young people who like to sing and are committed to attending regular rehearsals, recognizing the resultant rewards.

The Chorus consists of Performing Ensembles and numerous Outreach Programs. Each season the Performing Ensembles, comprised of approximately 200 young people, present 30-50 concerts locally and on tour. Children come from the greater Chicago area and scholarships enable the Chorus to accomplish one of its key commitments – that finances not preclude any interested child from participating.

Anima frequently sings for other non-profit community organizations at no charge, provides school exchanges for local area schools at no charge, donates services/CDs to other organization’s fundraising efforts, provides free services to immigrant children through the Lincoln School program, and has raised money for schools and community organizations while on international tours.

Tuition for the Performance Ensembles covers about 30% of the total expenses for each child. Partial financial aid is available to those in need and fund raising opportunities are available to choristers to help them fund tuition, tours, concert dress ,etc.

To cover the other 70% of cost, the Chorus is dependent on donations from individuals, corporations and foundations. The current economic climate has seriously impacted the organization and threatens its ability to continue to provide services to all children regardless of their economic situation.

The community can become involved with Anima by enrolling their children in these exceptional programs; referring friends to the chorus; attending a concert; hiring the Chorus for an upcoming event; ordering a CD (see the website at; volunteering at a concert or in the office to help curb expenses; attending the Golf Social in the fall or the Annual Benefit in March; or making a tax-deductible donation to support this community treasure.

For more information contact:
630-858-2471 •
Anima (Formerly the Glen Ellyn Children’s Chorus) is a non-profit 50 (c)(3) organization serving the community since 1964.

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