Artistic Director: Gilbert Patenaude
This world-renowned boys’ choir hails from a long tradition that originated in the sixth century. The Petits Chanteurs du Mont-Royal was founded in March of 1956, with the aim of providing the largest sanctuary in the world dedicated to Saint Joseph - Saint Joseph’s Oratory - with a choir on with the solemn liturgy celebrated within its walls. The choir’s main mission is to participate in the religious services at the Oratory by performing the purest of all devotional expressions: sacred chant. The Petits Chanteurs can be heard 85 times a year, principally in the context of Sunday Mass at 11 A.M at the Oratory.
The choir currently includes 175 boys aged 9 to 17. The Choir School has provided excellent musical and academic training to more than 1 200 children over the years. The Petits Chanteurs is among the finest children’s choirs in North America, performing the great works of the polyphonic repertoire from all eras and countries, as well as selections from a variety of musical cultures. Its excellent ensemble singing can be heard on numerous recordings and in the context of many public concerts.
In 1995, during the 27th Pueri Cantores Annual Congress, the Petits Chanteurs welcomed over 1 500 singers from Europe and the Americas. The choir has in turn been invited to perform at World Expositions in Vancouver, Montréal, and Taejon (Korea). Since 1991, the Petits Chanteurs embarks on annual tours of Europe and the United States. It is also sollicited by government dignitaries to perform at special solemn occasions, a recent example being the funeral Mass for former Quebec Premier Robert Bourassa.
Father Bertrand Badeau has been the choir’s Director since 1992, and Gilbert Patenaude, its Musical Director since 1978. The latter also conducts several other groups, including the Saint-Laurent College Choir, the Ensemble Radio-Québec, the Jeune Opera du Québec Choir, and the Jeunes Voix du Québec, in addition to pursuing an active career as arranger and composer.
Source: Les Petits Chanteurs du Mont-Royal