Millions of people worldwide are familiar with the music of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, whether through the choir’s performances in general conference or through programs like the 83-year-old Music and the Spoken Word weekly performance. Less familiar, however, are the day-to-day details regarding this group of singers.
The Mormon Tabernacle Choir is made up of 360 volunteer singers who are 25 to 60 years old. Through the years, the choir has traveled to 28 countries and performed in 37 states and Washington, D.C. They usually fly as a group to the area where they will perform. From there they load onto 11 tour buses, which are followed by 4 buses of luggage and 4 semitrailers carrying equipment. They then travel to various cities, sometimes 6 to 10 hours away.
While traveling, each member of the choir wears a blue name tag printed with the choir logo and his or her name. All choir and orchestra members have been set apart as “music missionaries”; they represent the Church wherever they go.
When choir members are not traveling, their normal week consists of at least one weekday rehearsal, along with productions of Music and the Spoken Word, which is a program broadcast internationally on television and radio each Sunday morning.
Church members accepted into the choir treat it like a calling. When they join the choir, they are told to consider the time commitment equivalent to serving as elders quorum president or Relief Society president in a ward. Once they are accepted into the choir, members may stay for up to 20 years or until they turn 60 years old.
The dresses worn by the women in the choir are designed and sewn by a wardrobe committee.
There are approximately 20 married couples in the choir and in the Orchestra at Temple Square.
The choir has earned two platinum and five gold albums.
The choir has performed at the inaugurations of five U.S. presidents.