Cantaré Vocal Ensemble is a mixed-voice ensemble with singers drawn from all around the Seattle area. Dedicated to presenting concerts of fine choral repertoire by exploring a wide range of choral literature, Cantaré offers singers the opportunity to learn and perform a variety of serious repertoire including 19th-century spirituals, psalms, and plainchant, as well as works by 20th century composers. Much of this repertoire is a cappella, drawing from the traditional choral library as well as serious literature from lesser-known choral composers.

Conducted by Mark Adrian, the ensemble numbers around 40-50 singers from throughout the greater Seattle area. Concerts are typically performed at St. Mark’s Episcopal Cathedral on Capitol Hill, Lakeside School in north Seattle, and at Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle.



Way back in 1984, Mark Adrian founded Choral Sounds Northwest, a community chorus based in the Burien area. CSN is a high-spirited group of singers specializing in performances enhanced with staging and lighting. Mark conducted the ensemble for 21 years before retiring his position to seek other challenges. During those years, the organization grew to include six ensembles: Choral Sounds Northwest, KidSounds Northwest, YouthSounds Northwest, TeenSounds Northwest, SilverSounds Northwest, and Cantaré Vocal Ensemble founded in January of 2000.

In just a few short years, Mark brought the 45-voiced Cantaré Vocal Ensemble into the spotlight of the Seattle choral arts community. The group presents a varied repertoire from Renaissance polyphony to contemporary compositions of all types. Cantaré has performed extensively throughout the Seattle area and usually presents its more formal concerts at St. Mark’s Cathedral on Capitol Hill, Lakeside School in the north end, at Town Hall on Seattle’s historic First Hill, and at Benaroya Hall in downtown Seattle.

Cantaré Vocal Ensemble is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization governed by a board of directors. Throughout our exciting history, hundreds of singers, instrumentalists, and community leaders have generously shared their management talents, time, organizational abilities, and creative visions with Cantaré. It is this tradition of dedication and excellence that guides us as we continue to grow, always striving to create the best possible musical experience for our members and our audience.



Mark Adrian has been involved in the Greater Seattle choral music community since 1981. He founded Northwest Associated Arts, an umbrella organization of six individual choruses: Choral Sounds Northwest, KidSounds Northwest, YouthSounds Northwest, TeenSounds Northwest, Cantaré Vocal Ensemble, and SeniorSounds Northwest. For 21 years he conducted Choral Sounds Northwest, the first of NWAA’s performing groups. In 2000, he founded Cantaré Vocal Ensemble, NWAA’s unique mixed-voice chorus of approximately 40 singers whose repertoire is vast and varied, ranging from spirituals to psalms and from plainchant to major works, with a particular emphasis on lesser-known contemporary compositions. In 2008, along with Lana Mountford, he developed SeniorSounds Northwest, a group of choruses based in several different retirement communities. In January of 2010, Cantaré Vocal Ensemble separated from Northwest Associated Arts and is now its own 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.

Mr. Adrian earned his BA in Music from the University of Washington, studying with renowned conductors Abraham Kaplan, Geoffrey Boers, Peter Eros, and Rodney Eichenberger. He has since gone on to complete graduate coursework for the Doctor of Musical Arts degree, specializing in choral conducting.

Equally at home in everything from Broadway musicals to the most contemporary choral compositions, Mark has most recently served as guest conductor of the Bainbridge Chorale and interim conductor of the Seattle Women’s Ensemble. In addition to Cantaré, Mark is Artistic Director and Conductor of the Sacred Music Chorale. He has led music programs at churches throughout Seattle and is currently director of music at St. Catherine of Siena church in the Maple Leaf neighborhood of north Seattle. Along with his conducting responsibilities, Mark maintains a private studio for voice, piano, theory, and conducting students (www.markadrianmusic.com).

Mr. Adrian has become known in the Seattle area for coordinating large choral events at Benaroya Hall. Each year in this magnificent venue, he brings together a number of choruses and orchestras to perform one of the great choral masterpieces. He has conducted, among others, Bainbridge Chorale, Everett Chorale, Master Chorus Eastside, Choir of the Sound, Rainier Chorale, Northwest Symphony Orchestra, Rainier Symphony, Cascade Symphony, and Sammamish Symphony Orchestra.

Many churches, schools, and area conductors seek Mr. Adrian’s expertise as a choral clinician, and he frequently adjudicates at music competitions and festivals. He is a published composer and arranger with many of his works having been performed locally. Among the organizations in which he is active are the American Choral Directors Association, Chorus America, Conductor’s Guild, National Association of Pastoral Musicians, and American Guild of Organists.

Latest News

Our 2020-2021 Concert Season has been cancelled due to Covid-19. If you would like to support us during these unusual times you can donate here. We are looking forward to returning to you in December of 2021.

Meanwhile, The studio recording of our Winter 2018 Concert Series IN THE STILLNESS OF WINTER is still available. Click here to order.


Membership to the ensemble is open to experienced singers of high school age and older by way of an audition with the conductor. Click here for audition information.

Upcoming Events

Check back in September 2021 for information on our post-Covid19 return to performing in December 2021