Chorale News

Our Beloved Maestro

Maestro L. Paul Madore, 85, of Salem passed away Monday, June 14, 2021 at the Pilgrim Rehabilitation and Skilled Nursing Center following a long illness. Born in Salem, he was the devoted son and only child of the late Ernest J. and Alma C. (Thibault) Madore. 

Paul graduated from St. Joseph’s High School with a full scholarship to Holy Cross but instead opted for Boston College, where he earned both Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in French language and literature. Paul’s initial career path was to teach French. In 1961, he accepted a position with the US Department of State and because of his fluency in French, was assigned to Brazzaville in the French Congo to teach English to government officials. Although the officials, as it turned out, were not much interested in learning English, Paul valued his two years of being immersed in African culture. At the conclusion of that assignment, Paul returned to Salem, enrolled in a post-graduate program in French at Harvard, and began a 27-year-long position of teaching French at Salem State College. 

Despite his love of the French language, however, Paul’s main passion was always music. From an early age, Paul showed great promise as a pianist, organist, and singer. Later during his college years, he met C. Alexander Peloquin, noted organist, pianist, and composer, who recognized Paul’s musical gifts and became his mentor. Dr. Peloquin’s influence led Paul to study choral conducting and piano at Boston University and inspired him to establish the Paul Madore Chorale in 1964. 

For 50 years, under Paul’s direction the Chorale performed music from many different periods and styles from Gregorian Chant to classical to contemporary in various North Shore venues. Some of the highlights include a fully staged production of Die Fledermaus, the Verdi Manzoni Requiem, the Berlioz Requiem, and The Armed Man by Karl Jenkins. During his years at Salem State, Paul organized the study- abroad program and in his travels became acquainted with the music department of the University of Caen in Normandy. This connection eventually led to two Chorale tours to France—most notably the Chorale’s participation in the 50th Anniversary D-Day Concert and celebrations in Normandy with other choruses drawn from all over Europe. Under Paul’s leadership, the Chorale also toured Italy in 1997 and performed at the Vatican for Pope John Paul II. Paul was also the Music Director for several churches over the years—most recently the First Church in Salem, from which he retired in 2017. In addition to his work as a music director and conductor, Paul was also a much sought-after accompanist and vocal coach. 

Besides music, Paul had many other interests. He was a longtime member of the Boston Yacht Club and was co-owner of the Dutch-built 38-foot sloop Sea Sharp. He served on many Yacht Club committees including as editor of the Binnacle, the monthly newsletter, and as chairman of the annual cruise committee. In addition, Paul was an avid world traveler and a gourmet cook, who enjoyed hosting and entertaining his many friends. 

A witty and engaging man, Paul drew people into his orbit. Whether hosting a gathering, preparing a meal for friends, conducting a concert in a French cathedral or Old Town Hall, or sailing his beloved Sea Sharp, Paul was always gracious and generous in sharing his interests and talents. Over the years Paul, surrounded by friends at a North Shore restaurant or watering hole, was a common sight. During the past few days, many people have remarked about the ways in which Paul enriched and even transformed their lives. Paul definitely exemplified a life well-lived. He will be missed but will certainly live on in the hearts and minds of those who knew him. 

Paul is survived by his devoted friend and caregiver, Alan F. Hawryluk of Salem; two cousins, Christine Caron and her family of Danvers; and Richard Madore and his wife Louise of Peabody as well as many faithful friends and Chorale members.  

His Memorial Service is being planned for mid-September at First Church in Salem, Unitarian Universalist, 316 Essex St., Salem, MA 01970. In lieu of flowers, kindly consider a memorial contribution to either the Paul Madore Chorale, http://www.thepaulmadorechorale.org , or First Church in Salem, Unitarian Universalist, www. firstchurchinsalem.org. For further information and guest book, please visit http://www.LevesqueFunerals.com 

Introducing our new music director!

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René A. Minalga-Rheault is a conductor, soprano, and organist hailing from Shirley, Massachusetts. She acquired a GPD and master’s in piano performance from the Longy School of Music where she studied piano with the late Ludmilla Lifson and organ with Dr. Libor Dudaš. Continuing studies at the Longy School led René to pursue a passion for early music where she studied voice with Ryan Turner and Pamela Dellal. René has performed with the Boston Camerata, Boston Opera Collaborative, and Eudaimonia. She is currently the music director of the vibrant music program at Trinity Lutheran Church of Chelmsford. René is a competitive chess player in the United States Chess Federation. Other interests include naps, coffee, and single malt scotch. She lives in Nashua, New Hampshire, with wife, Melody, and feline friend, Basil.

Our Winter Concert:  

Sunday, December 12, at 3:00 P.M. 
Location: The Bridge at 211 in Salem, MA

Sing with the Chorale! The Chorale recently began rehearsing for our 56th season in September, and new singers are always welcome. This season we will present a Holiday Concert on December 12, 2021 in our new home; The Bridge at 211, 211 Bridge St., Salem, MA. We will also present a Spring Concert featuring 21st century composers! Contact us if you’d like to come to a rehearsal!

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