Artistic Director

photo of Erick LichteErick Lichte has been hailed by The Washington Post for the “audacity” of his programming, the Chicago Tribune has noted the “meticulous preparation” of his choirs and Fanfare Magazine declared that he created and helmed “the premier men’s vocal ensemble in the United States.”

As a founding member, singer and Artistic Director of the male vocal ensemble Cantus, Lichte created and sustained one of the two full-time vocal ensembles in the United States.  From 2000-2009, Lichte’s programming and artistic direction was heard in over 60 concerts a year in such venues as Kennedy Center, Library of Congress, Elora Festival, Merkin Hall, San Francisco Performances, Oregon Bach Festival, UCLA and Spivey Hall, to name a few. His work has also been heard by hundreds of thousands of people through national and international broadcasts distributed through American Public Media.  He has collaborated with artists such as Bobby McFerrin, the Boston Pops, The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, Doc Severinsen, Minnesota Orchestra, James Sewell Ballet and poet Robert Bly.

His work with Cantus garnered the 2009 Margaret Hillis Award for Choral Excellence, the highest honor from the professional choral organization Chorus America, and has also been awarded major grants from Chamber Music America and the National Endowment for the Arts.  He is also a board member of the Intercollegiate Male Choruses, an organization for collegiate and community male choruses throughout North America.

As a choral conductor, Lichte has worked with a wide variety of groups.  In December 2009 he was guest chorus master for the professional chorus of Chicago’s Music of the Baroque.  He has also conducted the Great River Chorale, the Saint Catherine Choral Society, The College of Saint Catherine Women’s Choir, One Voice Mixed Chorus, Minnesota Compline Choir, Augsburg College Men’s Choir, Portland State Man Choir and University choir, in addition to three years of high school teaching and countless choral festivals across the country.  In 2013 he assumed the role of Artistic Director of Chor Leoni, one of North America’s most prominent male choirs.  Lichte holds music degrees from St. Olaf College and Portland State University.

Lichte is also a champion of new music and has been a part of the creation of over 50 new works. Composers Lichte has worked with include Lee Hoiby, Gavin Bryars, Steven Sametz, Peteris Vasks, Edie Hill, and Mary Ellen Childs.  Lichte himself is an active arranger and composer whose music has been heard across the United States.  He is especially known as a co-creator and arranger of the theatrical work All is Calm: The Christmas Truce of 1914, which has been broadcast internationally, has toured the United States six times and was presented at New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art in 2014 .

As a record producer, Lichte has been at the helm of ten highly acclaimed recordings.  His recordings have been named “Classical Album of the Year” by the Contemporary A Cappella Society as well as a “Top 10 Classical Album” by National Public Radio.  His latest recording with Canadian pianist Robert Silverman will be released on the Stereophile label sometime in 2013.

Lichte is an ardent audiophile.  He is a Contributing Editor for Stereophile Magazine, the world’s most widely read and distributed magazine for hi-end audio, where he writes equipment reviews of high performance audio equipment.