About Us

Founded in 2011, Civitas Ensemble is one of the leading chamber music groups in Chicago. The Ensemble presents repertoire spanning four centuries of music history and numerous genres and styles. The musicians nurture relationships with living composers to commission new works. During the past twelve years, Civitas has commissioned and premiered more than 10 new works. The Ensemble is currently working on two collaborative and commissioning projects for the 2024-2025 season.

The heart of the organization’s mission lies within community engagement & bringing live music to people with limited access.

The Ensemble Board members and musicians seek new ways to serve the communities. To that end, Civitas Ensemble performs regularly in hospitals, retirement living facilities, and partners with other non-profit organizations such as Chicago Lighthouse and Center for Food Equity in Medicine.

Praised for its quality of performances as well as its community engagement efforts, Civitas members are passionate about working with artists from other creative disciplines, dancers, visual artists, poets, in projects that underscore the power of cross-disciplinary arts. Past such collaborations include Alla Zingarese, an international connections project supported by MacArthur Foundation. The namesake album Alla Zingarese showcases Civitas Ensemble with Prague-based Gipsy Way Ensemble in exhilarating music inspired by the Roma music tradition.

Other collaborative projects include performances with Yo-Yo Ma at the Chicago Humanities Festival that featured panel discussion on the topic of “Artist and Citizenship.”   Civitas was named the Artists in Residence for the Chinese Fine Arts Society and has been invited by the City of Chicago to perform at the Pritzker Pavilion at Millennium Park, as part of the City’s Loops and Variations series.

The Ensemble continues to receive rave reviews from the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Classical Review, and Chicago on the Aisle. Its albums were on the top of Classical Billboard. Currently, there are plans for three distinct projects and featured albums with composers Mischa Zupko, James Stephenson, and Clarice Assad & Sergio Assad.

Civitas Ensemble receives generous grants from various foundations and many individuals.