About Slavyanka Chorus
Slavyanka was the name that early nineteenth century Russian settlers in California gave to
what we now call the Russian River. Slavyanka is also the a cappella chorus based in the San
Francisco Bay Area that has captured the hearts of singers and audiences alike since 1979.
Founded by two alumni of the Yale Russian Chorus, Slavyanka has varied in size from a dozen
to over 30 singers who all have other primary careers, ranging from students and business
owners to craftsmen and professionals.
For its first 34 years Slavyanka was a men’s chorus, joined on occasion by women soloists and
performing joint concerts with women’s ensembles. In 2013 the Slavyanka family officially
expanded to both a men’s chorus and a mixed ensemble with women singers as an ongoing
component in the concert offerings. While preserving the sound of the male choir, this enables
the exploration of a wider range of Russian musical repertoire, and we are overjoyed to share this
music with audiences in the Bay Area and beyond.
Past directors of Slavyanka include co-founder Paul Andrews (1979–91, and interim 2012),
Alexei Shipovalnikov (1991–97), and Gregory A. Smirnov (1997– 2011). In June 2012
Slavyanka selected Irina Shachneva as its new Artistic Director.
Slavyanka has sung in the soundtracks for several movies and on tours of the Soviet Union,
Russia and the Balkans, as well as for special events, such as performances of the Rachmaninoff
Vespers in celebration of the 1000th anniversary of the Russian Orthodox Church. Slavyanka’s
ten recordings are available on CDs at retail outlets, and can be ordered directly via email
For further information about the chorus, please contact Paul Andrews, 510-798-7966, or firstname.lastname@example.org.