Over the course of the year, the group met on a fairly regular basis, working through the details of forming a new chorus. A leadership team was formed as an interim governing body and charged with the strategic planning and administrative tasks of the new ensemble. While organizational structure developed and planning continued, the group began building a performance repertoire under the direction of Interim Music Director, John Fleischman, also the founder and director of the Buffalo Niagara Youth Chorus (BNYC).
The “Buffalo Master Chorale” name was selected during a general meeting of the membership in July. In the weeks that followed, the chorale’s mission statement was solidified and a business plan was completed. At the advice of Fleischman, members of the leadership team approached the trustees of the BNYC with a plan that would combine the two choirs.
In August, the BNYC board voted unanimously to accept the proposal and begin proceedings to combine the two organizations under one parent not-for-profit, Buffalo Niagara Choirs. The new partnership would build upon the individual missions of each member organization and create a truly multi-generational choral organization committed to the lifelong enrichment of choral artistry.
Doreen Rao, renowned internationally as a scholar, teacher, and choral conductor, joined the BMC in September 2012 as their Music Director. At the same time, Fleischman assumed the role of Associate Conductor. Prepared by Fleischman and under the baton of Rao, the Chorale performed its debut performances in Southern Ontario and Toronto. In November, the BMC made its Buffalo debut in concert with the BNYC.