About Masterworks Chorale

Dr. Stephen Mager, Music Director and Conductor

Mager Headshot
Masterworks Board of Directors

Our mission

The Masterworks Chorale sings to cultivate a lifelong love of choral music with a commitment to excellent artistic performance and music education that inspires our diverse audience.

Our vision

The Masterworks Chorale, as Southwestern Illinois’ premier performing arts organization, will unite and enrich our communities through the joy of music.

We Will:

  • Be recognized by the community as its own musical arts treasure
  • Expand our influence by performing regionally
  • Nourish artistic musical expression in the Chorale, the adult chorus of auditioned volunteer musicians
  • Enrich the artistic lives of singers from all religious, cultural, and socio-economic backgrounds through the Chorale and Children’s Chorus

As an arts organization, the primary goal is to make a significant artistic contribution to the residents of Southwestern Illinois. This is done by maintaining a tradition of choral excellence. Chorale singers are a select group of auditioned vocalists, many of whom have music degrees and vocal training. Continuing vocal instruction is encouraged.

It is Masterworks’ objective to foster an appreciation of the arts. This is measured in the Chorale by its ability to hold many of its original members throughout its 35-year history, as well as attract new ones. All singers are unpaid and rehearse weekly. Although concerts are held in Belleville, singers come from as far away as Pinckneyville, Sparta, Trenton, Carlyle, and Centralia. Members voluntarily drive those distances after long days, year after year, for the joy of singing the music. Fostering an appreciation of the arts in the community is best measured by the willingness of the community to continue to support the organization financially. As the financial contributions indicate, the community is more willing to do that now than ever before.

Encouraging and providing opportunities for local artists is another objective. This can be measured by the inclusion of professional Illinois and regional artists in the programs.

Masterworks continues to:

  • develop a governing board that reflects the communities we serve;
  • increase accessibility to the community,
  • ensure fiscal responsibility,
  • increase our base of community support, both in terms of volunteers and in-kind contributions.