After a musical childhood centered on classical piano, improvisation, and choir, Shawn Kirchner pursued an alternate path in college, majoring in Peace Studies, with folk music and foreign languages capturing his passion. Circling back to music as a career path — by way of grad school in choral conducting — he was also inspired to gain fluency as a pianist in many styles, resulting in a wide-ranging creative output once he began arranging and composing in earnest.  His long association with the Los Angeles Master Chorale, first as a singer, then as a pianist, and ultimately as composer-in-residence, served as the catalyst that introduced his music to the wider choral world. Whether it’s a complex concert work, a folk setting, a jazz ballad, or a bluegrass song, Kirchner’s signature approach can be identified in intricately detailed instrumental writing and intuitively melodic vocal lines that inspire singers’ artistry and humanity.


A rotating highlight of new work and less discovered pieces by Shawn.

PEACE Collection

A collaborative project offering a “peace of mind” response to the pandemic. The SSA collection includes 12 a cappella arrangements, which were recorded by British soprano Harriet Fraser.

I’ve Just Come From the Fountain

A fresh take on the traditional spiritual. The soloist introduces the back story of “the woman at the well” and returns to lead into a sparkling, meaningful coda.

Inscapes – Full Collection

A four-movement suite for double choir on the poetry of Gerard Manley Hopkins. The 20-minute showpiece is for advanced choirs of deeply expressive themes, rich harmonic language and intricately layered choral textures.

The Mystic Trumpeter

A festival piece for advanced choir and a talented organist, with text by Walt Whitman. The first stanza is an invocation by which Whitman invites the trumpeter to play a song of renewal, prophecy and joy. 


Tulips by Shawn Kirchner, text by Sylvia Plath – Tonality, dir. by Alexander Lloyd Blake

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