Based out of the Northern Virginia/Washington D.C. area, the professional male ensemble, Brethren, is a Christian group comprised of 30 singers from all walks of life including professional military musicians, free-lance artists, financial planners, educators, church musicians, a surveyor, a defense contractor, a park ranger, a flight attendant and a member of the Metropolitan Opera Company in New York City. In addition, singers hail from nineteen different states in the Union: Alabama, American Samoa, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and, of course, Washington, D.C.

The group actually began in October 2005 when a select group of singers gathered to record a small selection of a cappella hymns (The Hymn Project) as a Christmas gift for one of their mothers. Nine singers met for the first time in a small, basement studio, spent about 10 hours recording some of their favorite hymns, and the rest is, as they say, history. In fact, the group never intended to continue singing together after the project was completed, but God had other plans.

In September 2006, the group Brethren was officially founded with 12 singers and a desire to share their music ministry with the people of the DC/MD/VA area. They didn't know what opportunities lay ahead for this new venture, but they stepped out in faith. In June of 2007, Brethren recorded their second album, Then Christmas Comes, and continued to perform about once a month in local churches. Later that fall, the group grew to 16 members and began to receive invitations to travel outside of the Northern Virginia region and travel they did. During the remainder of 2007, concerts took them to North Carolina, Texas, South Carolina and West Virginia.

How Sweet the Sound (June 2008) was released while the group headlined Music and Liturgical Arts Week at Lake Junaluska Assembly in Lake Junaluska, North Carolina. In July and August, concerts with the Bemidji Symphony (Minnesota) and a mini-tour to the Portland, Maine region rounded out their summer travel. Music Week yielded still more invitations and over the next 18 months, concerts were scheduled in Georgia, Pennsylvania, North Dakota, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia and in the Washington, D.C area.

June 2009 saw the release of Homeland during a tour in the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex. This compilation album includes patriotic selections celebrating God and country. In the fall, Brethren was invited to sing with the Bismarck Symphony (North Dakota) and finished the year singing concerts in Richmond, VA and Annandale, VA for their home audiences.

In March of 2010, they were privileged to be invited to sing at the American Choral Directors Association Southern Division Convention held in Memphis, Tennessee. In addition to the convention, they sang concerts in Cookeville, TN and at Brentwood UMC in Nashville, TN to finish out their mini-tour.

Prayers and Praises is their latest project scheduled to be released in conjunction with their appearance at the National Convention of the American Choral Directors Association held in March, 2011. This fifth recording is a compilation of some of the best choral writing penned for men's chorus in the last 100 years. It is a return to an entirely a cappella album for the first time since their freshman recording, The Hymn Project (2006). This recording also boasts a truly "live" feel since it was recorded in a single day as the singers stood in a circle around (2) AKG microphones. What an experience!

Brethren continues to be a versatile ensemble. At any given time, they may be found singing for a corporate function on the "hill" in Washington, D.C., performing the National Anthem at a professional sporting event, or presenting a full length concert at any number of churches in the DC/MD/VA area. From Southern Gospel to doo-wop to chamber ensemble to full choir, they have the ability to provide a wide variety of classical, sacred or patriotic music for many different venues. Their repertoire is as eclectic as their vocal configurations and encompasses all main stream genres of choral music from Renaissance polyphony to traditional hymnody, spirituals, patriotic standards, and southern gospel.

Upcoming Performances

Previous events

All Is Well - A Brethren Epiphany

Annandale UMC, 6935 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA

$10 in advance, $15 at the door


Brethren in Concert

Damascus UMC, 9700 New Church St., Damascus,, MD


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Featured Artist


Robert Matthews, Tenor

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