• Auditions

    Carmina and Illuminare are auditioning for highly qualified singers, especially altos, tenors, and basses. Singers must be comfortable singing a cappella in a small group. The 20-minute audition will consist of vocalizing and sight-singing. In addition, singers should prepare a short piece from the early music repertoire, such as a familiar madrigal. Auditions will be held on Saturday afternoon, August 19 and 26. To schedule an audition, please email Steve Honley at

    Both groups rehearse Monday evenings at St. Alban’s Episcopal Church, Annandale, VA. The season’s first concert, on Saturday afternoon, December 2, will feature Advent and Christmas music of the Spanish Renaissance.

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Announcing Our New Artistic Director: Richard Robbins

Meet Dr. Robbins

Announcing Our 2023-24 SeasonWelcome to Our World of Early Music! 

Watch for news of our 2022-2023 season.

Meanwhile, please get to know us!

Follow the links below for more information about our performances:

All performances feature Carmina and Illuminare

Upcoming performances:

  • O magnum mysterium: A Spanish Renaissance Christmas
    Saturday, December 2, 2023 at 4 p.m.
    St. Alban’s Episcopal Church, Annandale, Virginia Details
  • Holiday “Lobbying” at the Willard
    Monday, December 4, 2023 at 5:30 & 6:45 p.m.
    Willard InterContinental Hotel, Washington, DC
    45-minute program, performed twice. Details
  • Franco-Flemish Masters
    Saturday, March 2, 2024 at 4:00 p.m.
    Beverley Hills Community United Methodist Church
    Alexandria, Virginia Details
  • Now Is the Month of Maying
    Saturday, May 18, 2024
    Resurrection Evangelical Lutheran Church
    Arlington, Virginia Details

Thank You, Vera!

With much fondness and gratitude, Carmina and Illuminare honored founding director Vera Kochanowsky in May, 2023 on her retirement from choral directing. We celebrate her twenty-five years of superb and inspiring leadership, and we wish her and her husband the very best!

Watch Vera’s farewell concert on Youtube: view video

Carmina, A 'Grande' Finale! (May 21, 2023)

About Carmina and Illuminare

Carmina and Illuminare are sibling early-music vocal ensembles who regularly perform together. Interim artistic director Hubert Beckwith conducts Carmina; Illuminare is led by interim managing director Steven Alan Honley. Carmina has presented early music in the Washington region since its 1998 debut. Growing interest led to the creation in 2006 of the women’s group Illuminare, which shares members and programs with Carmina while also performing on its own. After a two-year stint as a men’s ensemble (2018-2020), Carmina again includes the full range of singing voices.

Carmina, committed to performing early vocal music in the Washington area, has been praised by both The Baltimore Sun and The Washington Post and was also featured in the Washingtonian magazine articles “Perfect Pitch” and “Good Arts Groups You Might Not Know About.”

Illuminare has established a reputation in the Washington area for tastefully persuasive interpretations of early repertoire. Early Music America lauded its 2015 Fringe Concert at the Boston Early Music Festival.

Carmina and Illuminare are honored to have received the Choralis Foundation’s 2016 Ovation Award in the category of Best Chamber Chorus in the capital region. In 2017 the groups were Ovation nominees for Most Creative Programming.

To learn more about us, please visit About Carmina and About Illuminare. Be sure to see our concert schedule at Upcoming Performances. Many of our programs are free or by donation. We hope to see you at a concert in the near future!

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