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Founder, Artistic Director Robert Geary

Founder, Artistic Director Robert Geary

Volti, one of the leading professional vocal ensembles in the United States, has a primary purpose of performing contemporary American music. Having commissioned more than 100 new works by emerging and established composers, Volti is the only seven-time winner of the prestigious ASCAP Award for Adventurous Programming of Contemporary Music. Volti has been guided by founding Artistic Director Robert Geary since 1979.

In addition to presenting concerts of leading-edge unaccompanied music for vocal ensemble, Volti enjoys frequent collaborations. Recent projects include the premiere of “Dreamers,” an oratorio on immigration themes by Jimmy Lopez and Nilo Cruz, with the Philharmonia Orchestra conducted by Esa Pekka Salonen for Cal Performances; the première and subsequent performances of Kurt Rohde’s opera “Death With Interruptions” with Left Coast Chamber Ensemble; recording with the Kronos Quartet; the California premiere of John Luther Adams’ “Become Desert” with the Seattle Symphony for Cal Performances; and a collaboration with ODC/Dance in “Path of Miracles” by Joby Talbot.

Upcoming projects include collaborations with the Del Sol String Quartet in a major work by Huang Ruo based on the poetry of Chinese detainees on Angel Island during the Chinese Exclusion Act years, and participation in a nationwide consortium of vocal ensembles in a commission from Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Caroline Shaw.

Listening to Volti is like visiting a contemporary art gallery, stimulating the mind, the imagination, and the heart.


Robert Geary, Founding Artistic Director of the professional new music vocal ensemble Volti, the Piedmont East Bay Children’s Choir, and the Golden Gate International Choral Festival, also directs the San Francisco Choral Society. Geary’s multi-dimensional commitment to the choral arts over nearly forty years has encouraged the careers of several leading composers and has led to almost 200 new works. He has conducted and served as a clinician in dozens of countries. His choirs have performed with symphony orchestras and opera companies and at numerous conferences and festivals across the country and around the world and have collaborated with artists ranging from string quartets to dance companies in a wide variety of multidisciplinary works. Geary has prepared his choirs for some of the world’s leading conductors, and they can be heard on recordings with many labels.