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Markdavin Obenza is a choral director, recording producer, singer, and composer. He holds a Masters of Arts degree in Music Theory from the University of Washington.

 

Markdavin is the director and co-founder of two Seattle-based vocal groups: the internationally-acclaimed Byrd Ensemble (founded in 2004) and Radiance 

(founded in 2019), both professional ensembles specializing in the performance of Renaissance vocal music and American choral music, respectively. He is the artistic director of the Byrd International Singers, a select group of singers from around the world that participate in an annual Renaissance course offered by the Byrd Ensemble. He is also the Director of Choral Activities at Trinity Parish Church in Seattle, WA.

 

As a producer for independent record label Scribe Records, Markdavin has produced CD recordings for over 40 choirs (professional and amateur) and soloists, of which several have been reviewed on GramophoneEarly Music AmericaEarly Music Review, and FanfareScribe Records’ catalog contains Byrd Ensemble’s recording Arvo Pärt (2013) which appeared in French drama film L'apparition (2018) and a number of world-premiere recordings, including

Small Raine (2018) by American composer Nico Muhly, commissioned and performed by the Tudor Choir.

 

Markdavin has also produced and directed a number of virtual choirs, including Caroline Shaw's and the swallow, which was featured on Canada's choral broadcast of Modern choral masterworks on CBC. He has also produced concertmentaries, and musical broadcasts in collaboration with various music ensembles and artists during the pandemic. 

As a baritone and countertenor, Markdavin has performed with the Byrd Ensemble, Tudor Choir, members of the Tallis Scholars, Kronos Quartet, and Early Music Vancouver. He has also appeared on numerous films and video game soundtracks. 

 

In his spare time, Markdavin composes choral music, blogs about cultural and political issues, and hosts ThisChoirNerd podcast. He enjoys ultimate frisbee, tennis, hiking, and has recently become interested in meditation.