Mesilla Valley Chorale celebrated its 50th anniversary this year with a concert in May at the Rio Grande Theatre. The program consisted of songs from past performances chosen by the members, with one member who was part of the founders and another a charter member. The Chorale was recognized by the mayor and city council of Las Cruces for 50 years of contributing to the arts in the city.
MVC in the early days
MVC in France in 2009
MVC began with a group of friends from the St. Paul’s United Methodist Church choir getting together in Phil and Val Hosford’s living room to sing just for fun. Soon they had a director, Dr. Jack Chambliss, an accompanist, Dulcie Boykin, and a name: The Mesilla Valley Chorale. By May 1972, they presented their first concert and, from then on, they continued to grow and perform twice a year in May and December.
In 2007, the Mesilla Valley Chorale (MVC) members took a big step and rented the newly refurbished Rio Grande Theatre for their 35th-anniversary concert. They felt it was a perfect fit: a historic venue for a historic community choir with just the right ambiance. For the past 14 years, the RGT has been their only performing home. This venue brought the MVC greater visibility, which brought new singers and new opportunities.
Over the past years, MVC has performed in Savigne-l’Eveque and Le Mans, France, brought the Savigne-l’Eveque chorale to Las Cruces in 2011, and in 2012 organized a New Mexico Centennial Choral Celebration as a benefit concert for the Rio Grande Theatre. The concert, comprised of music by New Mexico composers, was sung by groups from both Albuquerque and Las Cruces.
The Savigne-l'Eveque chorale visited Las Cruces in 2011