Sct Peders Youth Choir – Randers, Denmark
Conductor: Karsten Blond
Sct. Peders Ungdomskor, (Saint Peter’s Youth Choir Choir) comes from Randers in Denmark. The choir was established in 1996 under the name Sct. Peders Drenge- og Pigekor (Sct. Peder’s Boys and Girls Choir). From the very beginning, the choir was known for its remarkable musical quality. In 2004, they received the First Prize in the national competition for Danish Children’s Choirs called Sangerdyst fra kyst til kyst which translates to Competition for singers from coast to coast. In 2005, they took part in the 10th International Choir Competition in Budapest and received a gold diploma. In 2007 and 2009, they received the First Prize in the beforementioned Competition for singers from coast to coast for the second and third time. In the spring of 2011, they received a gold diploma in Young Prague and in 2012 the second prize at Vratislavia Sacra for equal voices youth choirs. Determined to improve their performance, they entered again in 2015 and received the first prize at Vratislavia Sacra for equal voices youth choirs.
Female Choir of the University of Latvia ‘Minjona’ – Riga, Latvia
Conductor: Romāns Vanags
The Female Choir Minjona of the University of Latvia is an amateur choir. It was founded in 1975 by Viesturs Gailis, a professor of the Latvian Music Academy, one of the most acknowledged conductors at that time in Latvia. The choir usually consists of over 30 singers of all ages (13-50). Founded at the University of Latvia, the choir has not changed its location since then. Since 1990, the chief conductor and artistic director of the choir is Mr.Romans Vanags, associated professor of the Jazeps Vitols’ Latvian Music Academy. Together with Romans Vanags, the choir has won several prestigious awards at national and international competitions. The most recent international achievement to mention is the Platinum Award at the 1st Xinghai Prize International Choir Championships in Guangzhou (China). While participating in international choral festivals and competitions, Minjona has always been heartily welcomed and recognized by its listeners. At home, the choir has been among the TOP3 Latvian female choirs for years. Minjona is a permanent participant of the unique Latvian Nationwide Song and Dance Festival taking place in every five years and competing for the title of the best in the Battle of Choirs held during this festival.
Youth Choir Kallitexnimata – Athens, Greece
Conductor: Maria Michalopoulou
The Youth Choir “Kallitexnimata” (Artists) was created in January 2013. It consists of children 8-17 years old. The participants are trained in choral singing according to the basic principles of Kodaly & Orff musical education systems. The aim of the choral ensemble is to promote the quality, polyphonic choral music. The ensemble takes part in events, art festivals and competitions earning enthusiastic reviews. In June 2014 and in April 2016 the ensemble participated in the 1st and 2nd ‘Children’s Choir Festival Kallitexnimata” along with choirs from all over Greece. Since January 2015 it is a member of the Union of Choirs from all over Greece. In the 24th (2014), the 25th (2015) and the 26th (2016) National Choir Competition organized by the CH.O.Y (Choir Youth Orchestra) under the auspices of the “Ministry of Culture and Sport”, the ensemble won the first prize with outstanding performance. In the 8th International Contest which was organized by Intercultur in Kalamata (2015), they won the bronze award. From July 2016 the section is a member of Greek Property Choirs.
Female Choir Kallitexnimata – Athens, Greece
Conductor: Maria Michalopoulou
The Female Choir “Kallitexnimata” (Artists) was created in September 2015. It consists of women above 18 years old. The participants practice choral singing under the basic principles of the Kodaly & Orff musical education systems. The aim of the choir is the promotion of quality, polyphonic choral music. The choral ensemble takes part in various events, art festivals and competitions earning enthusiastic reviews. In June 2016 the choral ensemble was selected by UNESCO to represent Greece at the International Choir Competition in Pitesti in Romania. The female choir is a member of the Greek Choir Union and a member of the world’s leading organizer of international choral competitions and festivals “Interkultur”.
Vikár Béla Kórus – Kaposvár, Hungary
Conductor: Ludmány Géza
Vikár Mixed Choir of Kaposvár was originally formed in 1924 as the Kaposvár Choir of Industry Workers. In 1962 the choir took the name “Béla Vikár”, from the famous Hungarian ethnographer and folksong collector. Since 1964, Zsolt Zákányi conducted the choir and received Ferenc Liszt and Leo Weiner awards for his activity. In 1968 the choir received the title “Excellent Ensemble” and since 1980 the choir has taken part in international competitions and festivals every year. Since 2001 the Choir is conducted by Géza Ludmány, who is a docent at the University of Kaposvár. The choir regularly presents musical works from all spheres of music history. They sing a cappella.The choir considers it of great importance to regularly perform pieces of Zoltán Kodály and Lajos Bárdos.
Ansgarskören – Gävle, Sweden
Conductor: Per Ahlberg
Ansgarskören (The Ansgar’s Choir) is a female voices choir from Gävle, Sweden and they sing in the church of the Holy Trinity, Heliga Trefaldighet. The choir consists of 12 ladies separated in 6 sopranos and 6 alto distributed in 2, 3 or 4 parts. It started out 11 years ago as a mixed choir but since 2009 it is an equal voices choir. The conductor, Per Ahlberg, was born in Sandviken but he grew up in Stockholm. Per Ahlberg has graduated from the Royal College of Music in Stockholm and he studied conducting 1979-82 under professors Eric Ericson and Jorma Panula. Since 2007 he works as a church musician in Gävle at the church of the Heliga Trefaldighet. They have performed: Missa Brevis – B Britten, Te Deum Laudamus – A Sacchini, O sing unto the Lord a new song – G F Händel, Missa brevis in D – W A Mozart, Requiem – G F Brusa, Stabat Mater – G Abos, Icke jag – Ch Hobrack, Salme 23 – K M Øhrn, Works by Michael and Joseph Hayden, J Rheinberger and C-B Agnestig.
Choir “ALAID”, Children Music school №4, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskii, Russia
Conductor: Olga Vladimirovna Usmanova
The choir of the older classes of the children’s musical school №4, “Alaid”, consists of students of different specialties: chorus department, piano, violin or guitar. The choral group possesses a great creative potential. The choral group possesses a great creative potential. It participates actively in festivals and competitions of different skill levels. The choir has received a first prize twice in the Regional choral contest “Spring Voices”. It has also arrived third in the regional contest All-Russian Choral Festival. The members of the choir organize educational activity and take part in different town and regional activities on various themes such as Christian festival “Christ is born, fame him!”, “Nobody is forgotten, nothing is forgotten”, “The town of the first dawn”. The choir is a member of the 500-voice assembled choir of Kamchatka at the celebration of the Day of the Slavic written language and culture. The choir’s repertoire includes the most different genre and stylistic works: revisited folk songs, sacred catholic and Christian music as well as Russian and foreign classical music. Practicing choral singing, our children gain more experience, proficiency and professionalism that are necessary for achievement of the higher aims their preceptors lay down for their students.
MIRGO – Liepāja, Latvia
Conductor: Evija Goluba
Vocal ensemble “MIRGO” comes from the seaside town Liepāja in beautiful Latvia. The name “MIRGO” is translated from Latvian as “flickers”, “scintillates”. Similarly, the sound of the ensemble aims for vocal brightness, tembral radiance and emotional verve. Although, in this formation “MIRGO” has only performed together for a year, it has already been awarded golden diplomas in the European Choir Games in Riga (2017) as well as the Grand Prix in the Sacred Music Choral Festival in Kaunas (2018), Latvia.
Choral studio “ANGARA” – Irkutsk, Russia
Conductor: Valentina Shulga
The choral studio Angara was created in 1968. The choral studio consists of four steps: preschool, younger school age, candidate groups and a concert collective. The head of the studio is the additional education teacher Otlichnik nationally educated, Honored worker of the All-Russian Musical Society. In concert the choir has performed works by D. Bortnyansky, P. Chesnokov, D. Pergolesi, M. Glinka, L. Beethoven, O. Hromushin, G. Struva and revisitations of Russian national songs. Since 2010 the choir has participated in several national and international choral competitions in Russia winning 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes. In 2017 they won 1st prize in the III Edition of the International festival and competition in Seoul (South Korea).
CandoMini Choir – Helsinki, Finland
Conductor: Viena Kangas
CandoMini Choir was founded in 2013 and during its 5 years it has evolved from a small singing group into a award-winning children’s choir. Around 40 young musicians between the ages of 9 to 17 sing in the choir. CandoMini won two gold medals in 2016 at “Canta Al Mar” choir festival (sacred music category and children and youth choirs category) and in 2017 CandoMini was awarded with special prize and one golden stamp at “Tampere Vocal Festival”. In June 2018 CandoMini won first price in the children and youth choirs international competition “Vocal Espoo”. CandoMini was founded and is conducted by Viena Kangas, who won the conductor price in Canta Al Mar festival 2016.
OBALCA KOPER – Koper, Slovenia
Conductor: Sonja Mezgec
The Choir Obalca was founded in Koper in 2001. The choir’s repertoire has gradually opened up to different musical genres, ranging from the Renaissance to contemporary music. Particular attention is paid especially to Slovenian composers, with particular regard to young composers from the Slovenian coast. The Obalca choir has participated in numerous national and international competitions obtaining important results. At the national competition of Postumia the choir won a gold medal (2006) and three silver medals (2002, 2004 and 2013). In 2008 Obalca Koper took part in the international competition in Olomouc in the Czech Republic, where it was awarded the silver medal. Participation in national and international exhibitions is one of the main activities of the choir together with numerous cultural exchanges with Slovenian and choirs from abroad. The Obalca choir has performed in various festivals abroad: in Germany, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Austria, Czech Republic and Italy. In June 2016 they took part in the international competition Zlatna Lipa in Croatia where they were awarded the gold medal. From the choral international competition Aurora Cantat 2017 they returned with two golden medals and with the award for the best conductor.
Brummnet – Brunico, Italy
Conductor: Clara Sattler & Johann van der Sandt
BrummNet is a male choir with its base in Bruneck, South Tyrol, Italy. The choir started in 2003 as a project of the Music School, Bruneck with its members all voice students of the conductor Clara Sattler. The special name of this special male choir deserves to be explained briefly. “In the South Tyrolean dialect “BrummNet” stands for “Why not?” and was the dialectal answer of the choir’s director Clara Sattler to a request for a performance. “But “Brumm net” also means “don’t grumble” and reads like an announcement to the men in the choir to sing neatly, i.e. sonorously. From the beginning of the choir’s life a special focus of the ensemble was on sacred repertoire. BrummNet’s performances in sacred services is characterised by a heartfelt honesty and expressiveness serving the music and the people through their pure singing. It is not only sacred music that the choir is known for, but also the unique rendition of South Tyrolean and Alpine folk music. The choir received international attention with its classical program in October 2007 and November 2016 at the “Gesamtiroler Wertungssingen”. In addition to the Audience Award, the jury awarded them the highest marks, thus expressing that BrummNet is among the finest that the South Tyrolean choir world currently has to offer. A competition and concert tour led the choir to the first Swiss Alpenchorfestival in Brigg (CH) in 2008 and to Austria Cantat in Feldkrich (A) in 2015. The Choir’s discography consists of two CDs. The first one featuring South Tyrolean Advents music, and the second one is a portrait of the choir singing a mixed programme. The male singers come from a wide region in South Tyrol, and all from different professions, from bankers, teachers, farmers to architects and pensioners. The choir strives to serve choral music as an art and endeavors with each performance to give listeners a soundful and heartfelt experience through the medium of the sung voice. Currently the choir is conducted by Clara Sattler, assisted by Johann van der Sandt