Valkia is a Finnish male voice chamber choir founded in April 2016 .The singers of the choir have backgrounds in leading Finnish male and mixed choirs. The leading thought of Valkia is to enable quality male choir singing in chamber choir size. In Finnish, Valkia means “fire” or “blaze”, a name that perfectly captures the unity and sense of warmth in the choir’s sound. Valkia’s repertoire consists of the gems of 19th and 20th century a cappella music for male choir, spiced up with old music and contemporary favourites. In 2017 Valkia won the second prize in Contemporary Music Category of the International Choir Festival in Tallinn and was awarded a special male choir prize at the Tampere Vocal Music Festival.
Saara Aittakumpu was invited as Valkia’s chief conductor in June 2016. She holds a Master’s degree in music with a major in Choral Conducting, awarded by the Sibelius Academy (University of the Arts, Helsinki).
Lautitia Chamber Choir was grown up from Lautitia Mixed Youth Choir, with members mostly studying non-musical disciplines. Their repertoire is mostly based on contemporary music but they also like the challenges of old time compositions. The choir been awarded First Prize at the International Choir Competition of Budapest in 2015 and 2017, and believes that with hard work, mutual confidence and togetherness they could be able to fulfill their own expectations.
József Nemes has been dealing with music since childhood and works as a music teacher and conductor at his former elementary school. With his three choirs (Lautitia Children’s Choir, Mixed Youth Choir & Chamber Choir), he aims to transmit pleasure and profound emotions during performances and to experience some exceptional moments with his singers.
Cappella Lyrica is an equal-voice choir comprised of students of the Music, Pop and Drama programmes at the CIT Cork School of Music. Its repertoire ranges from early music to contemporary works. Cappella Lyrica sang in public for the first time in early 2011 participating in the first performance in Cork of Britten’s St Nicholas Cantata. Cappella Lyrica’s programmes regularly feature the compositions of established and emerging Irish composers, particularly and those works in the Irish language. In September 2017, the choir collaborated with Crash Ensemble to give the first performance of Out Into by Emily Hall at the Sounds of a Safe Harbour Festival in Cork. In competitive performances Cappella Lyrica has been successful at the Cork and City of Derry International Choral Festivals and also at the Limerick Church Music Festival.
The Choir are under the direction of Maria Judge and their accompanist is Deirdre Long.
The DIT Chamber Choir is a vocal ensemble of the Dublin-based DIT Conservatory of Music and Drama. It provides singers with essential development and experience in numerous areas including ensemble, blend and vocal control, musicianship and performance. As well as giving regular concerts, the choir participates in competitions, twice winning first prize in the National Chamber Choir competition at the Cork International Choral Festival. Under the direction of conductor Bernie Sherlock, the choir has won the Feis Ceoil Culwick Cup for chamber choir on seven occasions and also released its first CD – Carols for Christmas. In the 2017 Feis Ceol, the DIT Chamber Choir was awarded the Clef Club Award, the Culwick Cup and the Oliver O’Brien prize for the best overall adult choir.
Bernie Sherlock studied choral conducting with Peter Erdei and Ildikó Herboly Kocsár in Hungary, followed by orchestral conducting with Gerhard Markson in Dublin.
The Academy Chamber Choir was founded in September 2007 as part of a performing group’s initiative undertaken by The Academy of Music in Tullamore They have had huge success in almost every national choral festival including many awards at Cork International Choral Festival. The choir’s successes include Ireland’s National Choir of the Year in 2012 and 2017 at Navan Choral Festival and First Place at the Early Music Competition, Sacred Music Competition and Choir of the Year at Limerick Choral Festival 2017. They represented Ireland at “Miltenberg International Choral Festival” in 2016 where they came third.
Ciaran Brady is Director of The Academy of Music in Tullamore and is Vocal Coach and Performance Tutor at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth. Ciaran has an Honour’s Master’s degree in Music and vocal performance from N.U.I. Maynooth.
Adolf Fredrik Church’s Chamber Choir is a mixed choir located in Stockholm, Sweden. The choir was founded in 2000 as a Youth Choir and reformed into a Chamber Choir in the fall of 2016. Their repertoire is mostly classical and the choir has collaborated with, among others, the Stockholm Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra. AFCC has participated in major international contests and has won several awards in choir competitions. Most recently, the choir participated in the XIV International Choir Festival in Tallinn, Estonia, where it was awarded gold in the Chamber Choir category, second place in the Contemporary Music category, and won the Grand Prix of the entire festival.
Christoffer Holgersson is the conductor and artistic director of AFCC since 2011.
Haga Motettkör is a mixed choir from Gothenburg, Sweden. Consisting of 30 singers, the choir is known for its inspired performances of contemporary a cappella compositions and vivid concerts of authentic baroque music. Haga Motettkör has won many prizes in competitions such as Venezia in Musica (Italy, 2008), Heart of Europe (Gelnhausen, Germany, 2010) and Canta al Mar (Calella, Spain, 2012), as well two Gold medals at the World Choir Games in Riga, Latvia, 2014.
Award-winning conductor Ulrike Heider has been the director of Haga Motettkör since 1999. Born in Erlangen, Germany, she moved to Sweden after music studies in the Netherlands. Heider is a versatile musician who serves as the organist of the Haga Church, Göteborg, as well as freelancing as a conductor of orchestral and choral music, specializing in Gregorian chant. She is an advocate of contemporary choral music as well as a frequent programmer of baroque repertoire.