History of Measure for Measure
Measure for Measure was founded in 1988 to provide an opportunity for men to perform music composed and arranged for male chorus. The group made its concert debut in April 1989 under the direction of its founding Conductor, Dr. Leonard L. Riccinto and has since grown fourfold. Beginning in 2003, under the direction of Dr. Riccinto, Steven Lorenz served as Assistant Conductor and in 2007 became our Music Director and Conductor and continues the legacy of musical growth and excellence to which the men of Measure for Measure continually aspire.
The repertoire of the group incorporates selections from many different musical styles and periods.
Chorus members come from all over Southeast Michigan, ranging in age from twenty one to over eighty. Though drawn from a wide variety of occupational backgrounds, they share a dedication to the choral art and enjoy a special blend of camaraderie, community and musicality. The group has earned praise for their lively musical excellence in performances throughout America and Europe, but the reflection they most often value is the often heard “You really enjoy what you are doing!”
Measure for Measure has given many memorable performances at exciting venues during the last decade: The American Choral Directors Association Central Division Convention in Detroit, Historic Gem Theater and Tiger Stadium, joint concerts with the Plymouth, Rochester and Ypsilanti Symphony Orchestras, and annual spring concerts at the Michigan Theater and Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor. Featured soloists include Metropolitan Opera bass Ara Berberian, and sopranos Glenda Kirkland, Jennifer Larson and Carrie Wilson.
In July of 1999, Measure for Measure was selected to participate in the International Musical Eisteddfod in Llangollen, Wales. Part of a 10 day tour of Wales and England, it included nine more memorable performances in venues such as Harlech Castle, Salisbury Cathedral, and Southwark Cathedral, London. The summer of 2002 included a tour of Canada with participation in the Elora Music Festival and the Stratford Summer Music Festival. In 2004 they were invited to participate in the Intercollegiate Men’s Chorus conference in Cambridge, Massachusetts and in 2005 Measure for Measure was honored to sing a Pops Concert with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, in Orchestra Hall, under the baton of Erich Kunzel.
Measure for Measure has established an outreach program and has performed for the benefit of such charitable organizations as Dawn Farm, Hope Clinic, United Way, St. Joseph Mercy Hospital – Pontiac, Mott’s Children’s Hospital, Save-A-Heart Foundation, Saline Area Social Services, and a project sponsored by the Livingston Arts Council to restore the Howell Opera House.
"What was, at first, an opportunity for men to perform music composed and arranged for male chorus has grown into a fine regional ensemble that is winning acclaim wherever it goes.”
—The Ann Arbor News
“Now in their 19th year, Measure for Measure is recognized as one of the finest male choruses in the country.”
“The Drama, the power, the camaraderie, the sonority and - yes - the humor combined to give all of us a memorable entertaining experience.”
— Milton Olsson,
President American Choir Directors Association
The group has produced several recordings over the years. Measure for Measure at Orchestra Hall, recorded in 1996; Measure for Measure 10th Anniversary, recorded in 1998 is a compilation of favorite selections from the previous ten seasons. The group’s first holiday recording, Measure for Measure: A Celebration of Christmas, was recorded in 2000. Our newest recording, “Plenty Good Room,” delivers a rich combination of spirituals, love songs, and world music.