Selected choirs for this year’s Fleischmann International Trophy Competition joined us from all corners of the world. Representing Slovakia, France, UK, Sweden, Ireland, Russia, Germany, USA, Finland, Bulgaria and Belarus, this year’s competitors turned up the heat for this internationally renowned award. The Competition was held in two sessions – an afternoon session at 3pm, Saturday 4th May at City Hall, and the second session at 8pm the same night. Huge congratulations once again to this year’s champions University of Oregon Chamber Choir!
For your chance to participate next year click here!
Ad Una Corda, previously known as The Singing Association of Pezinok, was established in 1867. However during the 50s and 60s the activity of the choir was restrained due to the increasing communist counter-religious oppression but with determination the choir continued to rehearse in secret under the leadership of Jarolím Šipoš. Following a number of different conductors, Marian Šipoš remains as conductor since 1987.The choir mainly works with classical and modern church music and despite being an amateur ensemble has achieved remarkable artistic prestige, which is evident by their ever increasing collaborations with top professional international institutions and ensembles. The choir has performed at countless concerts and festivals across the world, and has been honoured with three 1st places in international choral competitions including Banska Bystrica (2008), Malta (2002) and Olomouc (1998), as well as the Gold band at the International Festival Musica Sacra in Bratislava (2007).
Founded in Lyon in 2003 by Alain Louisot, Alter Echo brings together thirty amateur singers who share a love for choral music. Selected as much for their enthusiasm as for their musical ability, they relish the opportunity to explore French and international choral repertoire, with a particular liking for 20th century music. The choir has participated regularly in the Florilège Vocal de Tours international contest winning 1st prize in 2007, and seven prizes in 2008 including the Grand Prix, and the European Grand Prix in 2009. In 2010 Alter Echo were invited to perform in the Festival des Choeurs Lauréats in Provence. Alter Echo regularly meets with other choirs to share musical experiences, notably performing Rutter’s Magnificat with an choir from England and a live performance of The Lord of the Rings with the Lyon National Orchestra and the Lyon Bernard Tétu Choir and Soloists.
Coro was formed in 2000 as a chamber choir for experienced singers dedicated to performing to the highest standard. In 2003 the choir became the first Western European group to win the Grand Prix at the Tallinn International Choral Competition and in 2007 won the Renaissance Music and the Twentieth Century Music prizes at the Guido d’Arezzo International Polyphonic Competition in Italy. In 2010 the choir reached the Grand Final of the Florilége Vocal de Tours in France, and was awarded the competition’s special Renaissance prize. Coro has released three CDs on the Dal Segno record label, and also features on releases from Russell Watson, Alfie Boe and Sarah Brightman.
Härlanda Kammarkör was founded in Göteborg, Sweden, in 2007 and has aimed for a high standard of music since its foundation. A significant part of the choir’s delegates are music students between the age of twenty and thirty, giving the choir a fresh yet mature sound. Under the direction of conductor David Molin, the choir performs Swedish as well as international a cappella repertoire from several different epochs, such as Brahm’s Requiem, Bach’s St John’s Passion and Montiverdi’s Marian Vespers. In 2008, the choir recorded the CD Nu är en dag framliden with Swedish folk music on the label Verbum Förlag AB. In 2012, Härlanda Kammarkör won the Mixed Choirs category at the Florilège Vocal de Tours, France, one of the most prestigious choir competitions in Europe. The choir also received the Ockeghem prize for best performance of a Franco-Flemish work.
New Dublin Voices was founded by conductor Bernie Sherlock in 2005. Now established as one of Ireland’s leading chamber choirs, it has a reputation for concert programmes that are fresh, innovative, and exciting, ranging widely in style and period from the medieval to the contemporary. The choir takes special pleasure in exploring the music of living composers and has given numerous Irish and world premieres. The choir has won prizes at major competitions in France, Hungary, Germany, Finland, Italy and Belgium, as well as in Ireland. NDV works regularly with the RTÉ Orchestras, appears regularly on television and radio, and gives numerous concerts each year, both in Ireland and abroad.
Salutaris is a chamber choir who have performed at prestigious concerts across the world along with winning First Class Prize at the X Orthodox Chants Festival in Minsk and subsequently took part in XVIII International Choir Festival La Fabbrica del Canto in Italy. In November 2009 they went on to stage Henry Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas to critical acclaim. In 2010 they won the respected contest at the International Festival of Orthodox Church Music, Hajnówka (Poland). In September 2011 the golden statuette of Serbian composer Stevan Mokranjac was awarded to conductor Olga Yanum following the choir winning the choral competition during ‘Mokranjčevi dani’ festival that took place in Negotin (Serbia). In 2012 Salutaris performed at more than 70 concerts in Germany, Lithuania, Russia, Ukraine, Serbia and Belarus. The highest point of the season was singing in the most prestigious classic concert halls in Moscow and St.Petersburg.
Te Deum Adoramus mainly consists of former singers of the Bulgarian Children Choir that performed in numerous concerts in many countries worldwide. Their dedication and technique developed from childhood, and naturally led to the idea of performing together once again. Te Deum Adoramus was established in 1997 by Teodora Dimitrova who graduated from the National Academy of Music (Bulgaria) as Master of Music in Choir Conducting, Theory of Music and Organ. She has worked with some of the most well-known choirs in Sofia and has participated in many concerts in Bulgaria and across the world. Teodora Dimitrova has also been invited as a conductor of Collegium Musicum Chamber choir. Working with both choirs Teodora has won numerous awards at international choral competitions and festivals around the world.
Turku Conservatory Chamber Choir was founded in 2003 upon an idea to create an ambitious mixed choir combining experienced choral singers and people studying to become professional singers in Turku, Finland. Since 2008 the choir has been conducted by Markus Yli-Jokipii, one of the leading young conductors in Finland. The choir performs a wide range of repertoire including both a cappella and accompanied music from different musical eras. They were the official festival choir of Turku Conservatory’s Nordic Choral Composition Competition in 2007.
The chamber choir is very versatile having performed several classical premieres, a cappella choral classics, works for choir and orchestra and also a contemporary opera Eerik XIV by the Finnish composer Mikko Heiniö. The opera was one of the main events of Turku as the European Capital of Culture 2011. Turku Conservatory Chamber Choir gives concerts regularly in Turku and around Finland and has also performed abroad, most recently in Estonia in January 2012.
The University of Oregon Chamber Choir, under the direction of Sharon J. Paul, is the most select ensemble in the University of Oregon’s eight-choir programme. Comprised of undergraduate and graduate students, the Chamber Choir specialises in a cappella music from the sixteenth to the twenty-first centuries. In April 2011, the Chamber Choir won top honours in two categories at the 12th International Choir Festival held in Tallinn, Estonia. In addition, they have performed by juried audition at state and division conferences for the American Choral Directors Association and the National Association for Music Education. Sharon J. Paul is Professor of Music, Chair of Vocal and Choral Studies, and Director of Choral Activities at the University of Oregon, where she teaches graduate courses in choral conducting, repertoire, and pedagogy, and conducts the Chamber Choir and University Singers.
“Excellent”, “crystal clear sound” and “perfectly executed” are just a few phrases which have been used to describe Vokalconsort Osnabrück. The ensemble consists of 26 singers and was founded in 2008 by the Director Stephan Lutermann, Organist and Choirmaster at the Church of St. Matthaus in Melle. The ensemble was re-established in 2011 under its current name. Vokalconsort Osnabrück is often praised for the mixed formation of the singers, which supports the well-balanced sound of the choir. The choir’s repertoire ranges from a cappella music from the early Renaissance to contemporary music. In 2009, Vokalconsort Osnabrück was delighted to win 1st prize at the 3 German-Dutch-Choir competition at Kloster Frenswegen.
In 2008 Zhar-Sokol Choir was established following the 100th birthday celebration of Professor Vladislav Sokolov, a renowned conductor who had once worked with the members of the choir in his capacity as a conductor at the Moscow Conservatory. In 2009 they took part in the 26th Franz Schubert International Competition in Vienna, where they were awarded first and second place in Women’s Choir category and Sacred Music category respectively. They went on to win the International Choral Competition in Rimini, Italy in 2010. In 2011 the choir was awarded first place at the 2nd Russian Festival of Student, Amateur and Children Choirs and went on to perform at the 54th Festival of International Choral Art in Jihlava (Czech Republic) and won the 13th Inter-Regional Choral Competition along with a special prize and diploma for an original performance of modern music. In 2012 the choir took part in 14th Neuchâtel International Choral Festival and was awarded a diploma at this prestigious competition.