Gloria Musicae Inc (dba Choral Artists of Sarasota)
PO Box 52987
Sarasota FL 34232

Choral Artists or Sarasota, the region's premier professional vocal ensemble, celebrates the excellence of choral music through innovative, stimulating performances and educational outreach.

CEO/Executive Director Susan Burke
Board Chair Bill Kimbell
Board Chair Affiliation Retired, IBM
General Info
Organization DBA
Choral Artists of Sarasota
Tax Exempt Status Public Supported Charity
Incorporation Year 1981
State Charitable Solicitations Permit Yes Dec 2018
State Registration Yes Jan 2018
Financial Summary
Note: Revenue includes the value of in-kind contributions/donations
IRS Letter of Determination
IRS Tax Exempt 2012View
Impact Statement

Past Year Accomplishments:

Organization Name Change - In April 2017, Gloria Musicae announced its name change to Choral Artists of Sarasota.  The new name tells what we do; Choral - music, Artsts - focuses on our chorus members, Sarasota - reflects that our members are local - one of only a handful of professional choruses in the country made up of local artists.  The new logo and identity system is more fresh and contemporary.  Overall we seek to dispel the stuffy, semi-religious image imparted with the old Latin name.

Verdi Requiem -April 15, 2017 Performing with the Sarasota Orchestra and The Master Chorale of Tampa Bay, the Sarasota Opera House was sold out for this stirring performance.  Symphonic choral works of this magnitude are not often presented in Sarasota - it was nine years ago that the Requiem was performed in Sarasota. 

Bach Requiem - November 18, 19, 2017 Church of the Redeemer. Another seldom-performed master work.  The technical skill required to sing this work is uncommon.  The artistic maturity of the Choral Artists group was demonstrated in this performance.
 December 10, 2017, Choral Artists preformed Too Hot to Handel. Members of the Sarasota Orchestra, Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, Florida Festival Singers, State College of Florida and the Manatee School for the Arts joined the Choral Artists to rock the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall.  This contemporary, jazz/gospel setting of Handel's beloved Messiah demonstrates the range of the group and attracts an audience that may not be naturally drawn to the more classical works on our season schedule.
~ Build audiences.  Continued positive reviews, innovative programs, and collaborations attract new audience members who will commit to exploring choral music with Choral Artists throughout  a season.
~ Expand the board and hence build larger circles of influence in the community.
~ Through music, thoughtful programming, collaboration and community outreach strengthen our community.
Needs Statement

Programming Support: Producing innovative programming of the highest artistic quality involves rehearsal, musicians to accompany performances, and hiring venues in which we perform. A $500 contribution would support one singer's preparation and performance in one concert.

Instrumental Accompaniment: Most choral music requires instrumental accompaniment ranging from piano and percussion to a full orchestra.  Hiring professional musicians is a substantial cost.  The costs range from $5,000 - $25,000 depending on the requirements of the work.

Board Members: Choral Artists is looking for board members who will bring a fresh, creative outlook on advancing choral music in the Sarasota/Manatee region. Board members must be committed to the mission of choral excellence and should serve as stewards of its financial resources. Board members are asked to give or get $1000 per year.

Student Apprentice Singers: Student apprentices are aged 18-24 become members of Choral Artists for a full season. They gain performance experience, work with internationally-renowned soloists, and learn under the direction of Dr. Joseph Holt. A donation of $3,500 would underwrite an apprentice for an entire season.

Music Purchases: Choral Artists unique concert offerings require the purchase of music. $4,000 covers our music purchases for one season. Our extensive library is available for loan to any non-profit choral organization.

Background Statement
Soprano Arden Fowler founded Gloria Musicae Singers in 1979. Ms. Fowler, new to Sarasota at the time, noticed a lack of opportunities for professional choral singers, and together with Ann Stephenson-Moe and George Bledsoe, began recruiting singers from around the area to form the first professional chorus in the southeast United States. In 2017, the organization became Choral Artists of Sarasota, a name that focuses on our wonderful singers - the artists who make the music - and acknowledges our home - Sarasota. Choral Artists of Sarasota is one of only a handful of truly regional professional choruses whose members live and work in the area. The group is comprised of 29 classically trained, auditioned singers performing music from a broad spectrum of the choral literature. Complementing the ensemble are 8 apprentice singers – younger student singers ranging in age from 18 to 22. Nurturing and encouraging their early training is part of the educational mission of Choral Artists.
Currently under the direction of Dr. Joseph Holt, the ensemble has undertaken new cultural initiatives and partnerships to become a voice for the community in Sarasota. Unique among these programs has been the commemoration of the Holocaust with a spectacular presentation at the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall in April, 2014 including a larger chorus comprised of choruses in the area and a premiere dance created by Elizabeth Weil Bergmann. Choral Artists are also joining in partnership with the Artist Series Concerts of Sarasota to create programs that align with the artistic plans for both organizations. Choral Artists of Sarasota is a non-profit, tax-exempt organization, and is sponsored in part by the State of Florida, the Woman's Exchange of Sarasota, and the Sarasota Tourist Development Council.
Areas Served
Areas Served
FL- Sarasota
FL- Manatee
FL- Charlotte
FL- Hillsborough
Areas Served Comments Our concerts continue to extend their regional reach while our local audience grows as well. Several of our singers live and work in Manatee and Pinellas County and have attracted concert attendees from their area.
Service Categories
Primary Org Type Arts,Culture & Humanities
Secondary Org Type Arts,Culture & Humanities
Tertiary Org Type Arts,Culture & Humanities
Statement from the Board Chair/Board President
Choral Artists continue to develop as the premiere professional chorus in the Gulf Coast Area. The engagement of Joseph Holt as Artistic Director, and his work with the group have resulted in higher quality performances and larger audiences than in the past.  In recent years, we hired a Finance Administrator to bring the administration of the group to a more professional level. Consolidation of the administration has enabled GM to concentrate more on the future challenges .  An active Apprentice Program was instituted to enable younger singers to participate in the chorus.

With the support of The Giving Partner and the Gulf Coast Community Foundation, we have increased our annual fund raising, increased public awareness of the Chorus, strengthened the Board of Directors, began to develop a strategic plan, and continued to evolve as the premier choral ensemble in the greater Sarasota area.
Statement from the CEO/Executive Director

Choral Artists of Sarasota is the only professional chorus in the Sarasota area. Our singers are a varied, diverse, and committed group, and our artistic product is something we are truly proud of. Choral Artists is evolving to a new level of performance, community engagement and artistic impact. With a wonderful artistic director, a talented roster of performers, and a supportive board, we have the opportunity to become a more visible and integral part of the arts scene in Sarasota. With an increased focus on marketing and a dedication to collaboration and innovation, we can continue bringing the best in choral music to the Gulf Coast.

Description Choral Artists offers a season of six concerts from November through the annual July 4 concert.  Each season is designed to offer an array of musical styles.  In addition to collaboration with other arts groups, programming is designed to showcase the talents of our members singers at times and to bring nationally recognized soloists to perform. 
Budget $320,446
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Musical Performances
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served General/Unspecified Adults US& International
Short Term Success

Choral Artist audiences have an emotional response to the performance.  Bach Mass in B Minor lifts spirits with sublime harmonies and ethereal melodies.  Too Hot to Handel inspires with roof raising energy and unexpected interpretations.  90% of our audiences report the performance touches their emotions. This is ultimately the power of vocal music – to combine text and music to express the range of human emotions. Audience response ranges from celebratory, uplifting, comforting to sadness, nostalgia, regret, and angst. Whatever the impact, the shared experience builds a foundation for community. 

Long Term Success Choral Artists designs programs and seeks collaborations to build community among audience and promotes positive messages such as reverence for the earth, patriotism, valuing diversity.  Drawing on varied musical literature, Choral Artists rewards the audience with a mixture of classically performed choral favorites, new settings of classic works, premiering new choral works, and pairing music from disparate genres to offer new insights.  Thoughtfully curated seasons expand audiences' knowledge and appreciation of choral music.  Returning audiences of more than 60% indicates that our performances build an appetite for the quality and range of choral music that Choral Artists presents.
Program Success Monitoring Financial success is evidenced in ticket sales and donations.  Artistic success is monitored by the Artistic Director, reflected in published concert reviews and in audience feedback.  Audience surveys are used to gain feedback from the audience. Board members and Advisory Board members who have deep musical knowledge and experience also evaluate programming and performance.
Program Success Examples
Strongly positive reviews in the Herald Tribune, Observer, and Broadway World.
Description Each year, Choral Artists engages eight student apprentices (two per voice part) from local high schools and colleges. Students are assigned an experienced mentor within their section and receive scholarship monies for singing with the ensemble. Students also have access to private coaching, if desired, and are featured in showcase events during the season.
Budget $12,000
Category Arts, Culture & Humanities, General/Other Music Instruction
Program Linked to Organizational Strategy Yes
Population Served Adolescents Only (13-19 years) General/Unspecified
Short Term Success Short term success will be based on individual interviews with student apprentices. Our goal is to provide a professional music experience that young students can't get anywhere else. One of our current apprentice singers has written that she "absolutely loves" singing with Gloria Musicae, and that she looks forward to rehearsals each week. We wish to impart a love of choral music to our student apprentices so that they will continue to sing and participate in choral programs into their adulthood.
Long Term Success Gloria Musicae hopes to supplement the music education of young singers by giving them the opportunity to sing in a professional ensemble. Apprentice singers are encouraged to pursue careers in music and the performing arts. 50% of our apprentice singers will pursue a professional career in the arts.
Program Success Monitoring Program success will be monitored by individual evaluation forms that are given to apprentice singers at the end of each season. Program offerings for the following seasons will be modified based on written feedback from the apprentice singers.We have a selective audition process for apprentice singers, and a strict rehearsal attendance policy. Singers must demonstrate a strong level of commitment to the program in order to continue their involvement.
Program Success Examples
In the 2010-2011 season, two of our high school apprentices went on to pursue degrees in music education at Florida universities. Both apprentices stated that participation in Gloria Musicae showed them how a professional organization operates and allowed them to experience a high level of musical achievement at a young age. In the 2011-2012 season, two additional apprentices also went on to pursue music degrees at universities.  In the current season, one apprentice went to Stetson College to pursue a musical degree and a current high school student, is gaining notoriety in the area through performances with Gloria Musicae.
Program Comments by Organization In the nine years of his tenure as Artistic Director, Dr. Joseph Holt has raised the artistic level of the chorus to the highest level.  In a 2015 review, June LeBell stated that Choral Artists of Sarasota (then Gloria Musicae) could take its place alongside any professional chorus in the country.  As the level of artistry has risen, better singers are attracted to the organization.  Creative programming and collaborations with Sarasota Orchestra, Sarasota Contemporary Dance, Sarasota Young Voices, Science and Environmental Council of Southwest Florida, and The Master Choral of Tampa Bay demonstrate the range, innovation and caliber of work produced by Choral Artists of Sarasota.
CEO/Executive Director
CEO/Executive Director Susan Burke
CEO Term Start July 2014
CEO/Executive Director Email

Susan Burke joined Gloria Musicae as executive director in July 2014. She brings an array of non-profit arts administration experience to the organization. Most recently, she served as executive director of Florida Alliance for Arts Education. This state-wide organization advocates to keep arts education in public schools and supports excellence in arts education across the state. Shortly after moving to Sarasota, Susan took the position of Education Director at the Sarasota County Arts Council (now the Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County). She continues on a part time basis as Operations Director at the Arts and Cultural Alliance at the same time performs as r. Since relocating to Florida in 2001, she has served on the Community/Schools Partnership for the Arts, an Advisory Committee to the District Superintendent and on the Arts Education Task Force, a community coalition that supports arts education in Sarasota County. For 14 years, Susan administered Encore! Ensemble Theatre Workshop, a program she founded to bring together teens from around the world to study and create theatre each summer in the south of France. Prior to her work in arts administration, Burke, who has an MBA in Integrative Management from Michigan State University and a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of Toledo, worked in the private sector in project management, information management, and regulatory compliance in the nuclear power industry.

Former CEOs/Executive Directors
Rachel Assi Mar 2011 - Dec 2012
June LeBell July 2006 - July 2010
Senior Staff
Staff & Volunteer Statistics
Full Time Staff 0
Part Time Staff 3
Staff Retention Rate % N/A
Professional Development Yes
Contractors 55
Volunteers 20
Management Reports to Board Yes
CEO/Executive Director Formal Evaluation Yes
Senior Management Formal Evaluation N/A
Non-Management Formal Evaluation N/A

The Master Chorale of Tampa Bay
       (4/2017) Verdi Requiem

Sarasota Contemporary Dance
     (2/2018) Carmina Burana

 Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe
     (12/2017) Too Hot to Handel
     (12/11/2016) Too Hot to Handel - Jazz/Gospel Messiah 

Sarasota Orchestra
     (4/2017) Verdi Requiem
     (2/2016) Haydn’s The Creation
     (2/2013) Beethoven 9th Symphony
     (11/2012) The Planets
     (4/2012)"A Tribute to the Boston Pops"
     (12/2011) “Wondrous Sounds"

State College of Florida Concert Choir and Chamber Choir
     (12/2017) Too Hot to Handel
     (4/2016) Barnum's Bird
     (2/2016) Haydn’s The Creation
     (4/2015) “Old and New”

Science and Environmental Council of Southwest Florida
     (2/2016) Haydn’s The Creation
Sarasota Young Voices
     (2/2018) Carmina Burana
     (11/2014) “In Thanksgiving”
     (11/2012) "Celebrating Humanity"
     (5/2012)"A Trio of Choral Ensembles
     (12/2011) "Wondrous Sounds”

Belle Canto
     (5/2012) "A Trio of Choral Ensembles"

Artist Series Concerts of Sarasota
     (2013-2018) 4-6 joint projects each season including performances at the North Port
     Performing Arts Center that have been very well received and expanded the audience for both

Arts and Cultural Alliance of Sarasota County2013
Chorus American2013
External Assessments and Accreditations
Awards & Recognition
GrantWoman's Exchange of Sarasota0
GrantTourist Development Council of Sarasota2012
GrantFlorida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affiairs2017
GrantFlorida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affiairs2017
GrantTourist Development Council2017
GrantTourist Development Council2018
GrantFlorida Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs2018
Risk Management Provisions
Government Licenses
Organization Licensed by the Government No
Fundraising Plan Yes
Communication Plan No
Strategic Plan Yes
Strategic Plan Years 5
Strategic Plan Adopted Sept 2015
Management Succession Plan No
Continuity of Operations Plan No
Nondiscrimination Policy Yes
Whistle Blower Policy Yes
Document Destruction Policy No
Directors and Officers Insurance Policy Yes
Policies and Procedures Yes
Management Comments by Organization As the chorus has risen to great artistic achievement under the baton of Dr. Joseph Holt since 2008, the administrative functions of the organization have been challenged. Implementation of a contact database, an online ticketing system, and upgrade of the bookkeeping and accounting systems and processes have replaced Excel spreadsheets and phone-only ticket orders.
Planning & Policies Comments by Organization The Strategic Plan (Action Plan) was developed with guidance from GCCF consultants.  The organization has accomplished many of the goals and actions set out in the plan and continues to review and update it.  The current board development effort is phase 2 of the organization's plan for growth - also guided by consultants from GCCF.
Board Chair
Board Chair Bill Kimbell
Company Affiliation Retired, IBM
Board Term Apr 2016 to Apr 2019
Board Chair Email
Board Members
Board Members
Mary Jane Ayers Retired Music Educator
Sandra Brinker Retired
Kay Brown Retired
Sharon Greene Retired music educator, school administrator
Dr. Joseph Holt Artistic Director, Gloria Musicae
William Kimbell Management Consultant
Mary Lou Spottswood CPA
Robert Stobaugh BMO Harris Bank
Constituency Includes Client Representation Yes
Board Ethnicity
African American/Black 0
Asian American/Pacific Islander 0
Caucasian 9
Hispanic/Latino 0
Native American/American Indian 0
Other 0 0
Board Gender
Male 3
Female 5
Unspecified 0
Board Term Lengths 3
Board Term Limits 99
Board Orientation Yes
Number of Full Board Meetings Annually 9
Board Meeting Attendance % 91
Board Self-Evaluation Yes
Written Board Selection Criteria No
Board Conflict of Interest Policy Yes
% of Board Making Monetary Contributions 100
% of Board Making In-Kind Contributions 100
Standing Committees
Development / Fund Development / Fund Raising / Grant Writing / Major Gifts
Governance Comments by Organization
The Board has undertaken an organizational review and board development initiative with assistance from the Gulf Coast Community Foundation.  In the five years since the Strategic Planning initiative was undertaken, the goals established have been achieved or are part of ongoing work.  Significant administrative advances in the last three years including: personnel, formalized procedures, implementation of ticketing and contact management software, and upgrading of accounting and bookkeeping practices, position the organization to expand its board.
Current Year Projections
Tax Year Start Month Aug
Tax Year Start Day 01
Tax Year Begins 2017
Tax Year End Month July
Tax Year End Day 31
Tax Year Ends 2018
Projected Revenue $432,653.00
Projected Expenses $408,591.00
Total Projected Revenue includes "in-kind" contributions/ donations Yes
Organization has Endowment No
Capital Campaign
Currently In a Capital Campaign No
Anticipate Campaign within 5 years? Yes
Campaign Purpose
Campaign Goal
Amount Raised To Date 0 as of 0
Financial Review
Expense Allocation
Fiscal Year201720162015
Program Expense$359,920$223,503$148,304
Administration Expense$26,840$45,345$28,700
Fundraising Expense$20,173$27,413$2,504
Payments to Affiliates$0$0$0
Total Revenue/Total Expenses0.891.031.07
Program Expense/Total Expenses88%75%83%
Fundraising Expense/Contributed Revenue8%12%2%
Assets and Liabilities
Fiscal Year201720162015
Total Assets$57,544$107,157$94,617
Current Assets$57,237$106,315$93,240
Long-Term Liabilities$0$0$0
Current Liabilities$384$4,767$110
Total Net Assets$57,160$102,390$94,507
Top Funding Sources
Fiscal Year201720162015
Top Funding Source & Dollar AmountContributions, gifts, grants $250,888Contributions, gifts, grants $223,472Contributions, gifts, grants $140,185
Second Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountAdmissions $110,800Admissions $80,614Admissions $51,832
Third Highest Funding Source & Dollar AmountInvestment Income $15Investment Income $58Investment Income $6
CEO/Executive Director Compensation N/A
Tax Credits No
Short Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201720162015
Current Ratio: Current Assets/Current Liabilities149.0522.30847.64
Long Term Solvency
Fiscal Year201720162015
Long-Term Liabilities/Total Assets0%0%0%
Financials Comments
Financial Comments by Organization
Please note that Gloria Musicae's fiscal year changed from a July 1 start date to an August 1 start date in 2010 to better represent revenues and expenses from July 4 subscription concerts. 
Financial Comments by Foundation
FY changed from 7/1 - 6/30 in 2010 to 8/1-7/31 in 2011. Financials based on IRS Form 990/990-EZ. Individual contributions include foundation and corporate support, as provided in Form 990. IRS Form 990 and audits reconcile. 
Nonprofit Gloria Musicae Inc (dba Choral Artists of Sarasota)
Address PO Box 52987
Sarasota, FL 34236
Phone 941 387-6046