Chorus director calls it quits at 92, with Chichester Psalms

Chorus director calls it quits at 92, with Chichester Psalms


norman lebrecht

January 25, 2014

Robert De Cormier is retiring from the Vermont Symphony Orchestra Chorus, which he founded 20 years ago. What to do for his farewell?

Everyone agreed on Bernstein’s Chichester Psalms. But De Cormier’s second proposal – Michael Tippett’s A Child of Our Time – was shouted down by the singers. They’ve insisted on Brahms’s Deutsches Requiem. Report here.



  • PK Miller says:

    God bless Maestro De Cormier! If I can get out of bed & have even HALF my “marbles” at 92 I will be doing very well for myself! Too bad he didn’t stick to his guns & do the Tippett. Very interesting & challenging work. Good luck to Maestro De Cormier. The man, no doubt,has forgotten more about music than I’ll ever know!

  • I don’t see where “A Child of Our Time” was “shouted” down. Voted down, yes, but shouted?

    • Joe Goetz says:

      That’s correct, John. We filled out an online survey. Concerts were amazing this weekend, too. Very emotional.

      Hope your retirement is treating you well!

  • Karen LeFevre says:

    The Tippett was “shouted down” by chorus members? ? This is an irresponsible way to sensationalize , as if the chorus members were in some confrontation when actually DeCormier has been loved and respected deeply by his singers as well as his many and varied audiences in his life and in his musical career. I am one of the current chorus members and there was an online survey some months ago, but one of the extent to which it would matter in the final program selection was unclear to some of us. I know I felt that Robert should choose whatever he wanted in this final program so I did not send in a choice at all, and that is anything but a shout-down. I know others who did the same. In the months preparing for last weekend’s concert the chorus and the symphony organization found many ways to express our gratitude and respect for Robert, and it was deeply gratifying to have opportunities to honor him and to sing with him the music that he loved, and continues to love.