Choir's men lift voices: All-male album is unique in Mormon Tabernacle Choir's storied history

Published: Saturday, Jan. 1 2011 4:06 p.m. MST

There is something about the sonority and timbre of the male voice, and the way tenors and basses harmonize that make it very enjoyable to listen to, says Wilberg.

He knows that well from his early career. Wilberg came to the Mormon Tabernacle Choir from Brigham Young University, where he was a professor of choral music and was well-known for his work with the BYU Men's Chorus, as well as his arrangements for men's voices. Wilberg has continued that tradition with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.

"Songs by the men of the choir have always been favorites on our concert programs and broadcasts," he says. This is just the first time an entire album has been devoted to them. "It adds a new dimension to the recorded history of the choir."

"Men of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir" is the 35th recording project to come out of the choir's independently owned recording label. Over the years, the choir's albums have earned five gold records, two platinum records and a Grammy.

The choir is just coming off its hugely popular Christmas concert, which this year featured teen sensation David Archuleta and longtime actor and narrator Michael York. But they are already forging ahead, says Wilberg; 2011 will be another busy year, with a tour planned for June, another album in the works and a variety of special concerts, not to mention the weekly "Music and the Spoken Word" broadcasts.

"We just take a deep breath and go on," says Wilberg, as they continue to produce and present the uplifting and powerful music that has become a soundtrack for many lives.

e-mail: carma@desnews.com

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