The Sea Chanters, the 19-voice chorus of The United States Navy Band perform a variety of music ranging from traditional choral music, including the sea chantey, to Broadway musicals. Organized in 1956 as an all-male chorus specializing in songs of the seas, the group was named by Admiral Arleigh Burke, then Chief of Naval Operations. Female voices were added in 1980 and the chorus’ repertoire expanded. The Sea Chanters marked their 45th anniversary in June 2001 with a concert and clinic featuring guest conductor Donald Nuen and the premiere of “Keeping the Ocean Free” by Roger Bourland and William MacDuff.
The Sea Chanters, under the leadership of Senior Chief Musician John R. Bury and musical director, Chief Musician Keith D. Hinton, appear throughout the United States, and often perform at the White House, the Vice President’s house, and for Washington dignitaries.
The Sea Chanters have been featured in national events such as the 2001 “United in Memory” memorial service at the Pentagon; the National Day of Prayer and Remembrance at the National Cathedral; and the dedication ceremony of The National D-Day Memorial in Bedford, VA; The International Naval Review 2000 festivities in New York City and a host of other memorable events. They also appeared with the National Symphony Orchestra for the nationally telecast 2001, 2000, 1998, 1997 and 1995 “National Memorial Day Concerts” directed by Erich Kunzel at the U.S. Capitol. The chorus also performed at the Kennedy Center Honors for Bob Hope, and appeared with the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra, Baltimore Symphony, Virginia Symphony and Cincinnati Pops Orchestra.