Founded in 1983, at the Verdi Restaurant in Santa Monica, the Verdi Chorus is the only choral ensemble that focuses solely on performing works written specifically for opera choruses. When Verdi Restaurant closed in 1991, the chorus reorganized as a non-profit corporation, hired Anne Marie Ketchum as permanent Artistic and Music Director. In the fall of 2001, it moved to its permanent venue, the acoustically magnificent First United Methodist Church of Santa Monica.
Beginning with just 16 participants, the Chorus today numbers over 50 voices. Its repertoire includes over 120 operatic choruses, as well as many additional pieces from light opera and Broadway productions. Of the more than 60 guest artists and musicians who have performed with the Chorus, many have gone on to enjoy national and international recognition. The Chorus supports the Metropolitan Opera National Council by offering performance opportunities to the Metropolitan Western Region audition finalists.