A Choir Rooted In Social Justice
ANNA Crusis Women’s Choir is the longest-running feminist women’s choir in the United States, founded in 1975 by Dr. Catherine Roma. When deciding on a name for this new choir, Cathy liked the play on words that the musical term anacrusis lent itself to. By adding another “n” and making it a woman’s name, her small start-up group had immediate personality and warmth.
Today, ANNA is a widely recognized vocal ensemble in Philadelphia, with 80+ singers, committed to musical excellence and promoting social change. Led by Artistic Director Miriam Davidson, ANNA’s membership embraces diversity of age, ethnicity, and gender identity; our music repertoire reflects the rich spectrum of human lives and struggles, shedding light on issues facing immigrants and refugees, young people, women, the LGBTQ+ community, and others.
ANNA self-produces two major concerts each year and performs many community outreach programs throughout the season. We can often be heard singing at benefits, rallies, LGBTQ+ community events, prisons and shelters — anywhere that music can bring a sense of hope and empowerment. ANNA has performed at numerous venues in Philadelphia and New York City, such as the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts, the Annenberg Center, World Café Live, the United Nations, and Carnegie Hall. We are honored to have been invited to participate in the International Festival of Choirs to be held in Santiago de Cuba this coming October/November 2019. ANNA has also sung with artists including Dr. Ysaye Barnwell (Sweet Honey In the Rock), Demi Lovato, Holly Near, Melanie DeMore, Sharon Katz and the Peace Train, and a host of others.
ANNA is a founding member of GALA, the Gay and Lesbian Association of Choruses. GALA is the world’s only association dedicated to serving the LGBTQ+ choral community, with more than 190 chorus and 10,000 singer members in North America, Europe, South America, Africa and Australia (www.galachoruses.org).
ANNA is also a member of Sister Singers Network, a cooperative web of feminist choruses and ensembles, composers, arrangers, and individual singers working together to support and enrich the women’s choral movement (www.sistersingers.net).
ANNA — Rich History & Promising Future
ANNA takes its name from the Greek word “anacrusis,” a word used in music to describe an “upbeat” or “feminine” entrance to a phrase. Physically, it may be described as the precise moment of anticipation and exhilaration which occurs as a singer takes a quick, deep breath before vocalizing.
We sing to celebrate the diversity of our lives and culture; to find communion; to nurture and sustain; to comfort and to heal; to open hearts and minds, and to struggle together for a just and compassionate world.
Music is the currency of hope.
Diverse. Inclusive. Magic.
Musical excellence. Social change.