IMG_6415Founded in 1981, Bel Canto Choir (Canada) is located in Prince George, British Columbia, Canada. The choir is led by artistic director and conductor Melanie Taylor, and was conceived to provide solo and choral opportunities for Prince George Youth. With a repertoire that includes classical, folk, ethnic, spirituals, and jazz, the choir has represented British Columbia and Canada at several music events and competitions, winning many awards in the process. Recently the choir has performed at the Young Prague International Music Festival (2013), the Whistler BC Music Festival (2012), and the Oceanside California Jazz Festival (2011).

 

 

 

 

 

 

IoM Group 2013Blackburn People’s Choir  (U.K.) was founded in 1998 when half a dozen people attended a series of Bulgarian folk song workshops in Blackburn Museum. This small group suffered severe withdrawal symptoms at the end of the six week session, and so embarked on a search for funding to start a choir that could continue to explore unaccompanied harmony singing.  Jeff Borradaile B.Ed. (Hons) – has directed Blackburn’s People’s Choir on a choral journey that has seen the choir grow into a choir of 100 singers performing 20 concerts a year raising thousands of pounds for charity whilst developing the choirs technique and repertoire.  The choir has: Participated at the Krokstand Man Must Dance Festival in Sweden in 2006 and 2008, visited Northern Cyprus in 2009 and 2011, and won trophies at the Isle of Man festival of Choirs in 2011 and 2013. Their repertoire is wide, with songs from a range of places and times—African and world music, folk, gospel, pop, Sacred, classical and contemporary.

 

 

 

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Female Alumnae Choir of Tallinn University of Technology (Estonia) was founded 31 years ago by a group of enthusiasts who had studied in this university and sung in the choir of students. Conducted by Andres Heinapuu and Tiina Selke, the choir’s repertoire covers a wide range, from classical and contemporary music to folk songs and arrangements of popular songs. During the years, choir’s repertoire has embraced music by Johannes Brahms, Giovanni Battista Pergolesi, Ludwig van Beethoven, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and many more great composers, while also keeping a focus on Estonian choral music. In the 2006 the choir was awarded the Choir Of The Year prize by the Estonian Female Choir Association.

 

 

 

Photograph - Non-comp - HúsakóridHúsakórið (Denmark) is a choir of Faroe Islanders residing in Copenhagen that was founded in 1971. The choir has an invaluable importance to the local Faroese community and to everyone that appreciates the great Nordic and Faroese music traditions. Capturing in their sound the rough and windy climate of the Faroe Islands, there is a sense of drama in their music, scored with lyrics by the greatest Faroese poets. In 2012 Húsakórið had the honour of performing for the Danish Queen on the 40th anniversary of her coronation. Since January 2012 Húsakórið has been conducted by the talented Ms Tóra Vestergaard. Tóra has a Master degree in music pedagogy and singing. At the moment she is studying classical choir conduction at the University of Southern Denmark.

 

 

 

Ier en Gunter-1Ier en Gunter (Belgium) is based in the Belgian coast town of Ostend which bears the proud title of ‘Stad aan zee’. The ‘Ier’ in the name, which is Dutch for both ‘here’ and ‘Irishman’, is a reference to founding member Joe Mullen, who was originally from Cobh, Co. Cork. Conducted by Mr. Dirk Ooms, it is a mixed four voice amateur choir with a broad repertoire consisting of Irish and English folksongs, World music, Chanson, Pop, Jazz, Renaissance, and Baroque pieces. Dirk Ooms is a pianist and teacher at the Ostend Music Conservatory. The choir is also accompanied on guitar by Patrick Gyselen.

 

 

 

 

Photo-Jordan Valley, IsraelJordan Valley Choir (Israel) was founded 32 years ago in the beautiful Jordan Valley next to the Sea of Galilee. The choir is conducted by Mrs. Ira Kalechman and consists of35 singers that offer a broad range of vocal styles. With a repertoire containing Israeli songs (old and new), Jewish Liturgical Music, folk songs, and classical, the choir has performed on TV shows, radio stations, official ceremonies, and has participated in choral festivals in Italy, Czech Republic, Hungary, Austria, and Russia. It won a gold medal in the International Choir Festival “Shirat Hayamim” in Natania, Israel. The choir is accompanied by pianist Mrs. Marina Sandrovich.

 

 

UNTAK pictureUNTAK (Norway)  is a mixed choir and was established in 1991. The choir consists of both a show/cabaret group and a choir based in the two small neighboring communities of Nesseby and Tana in Finnmark, a county in Arctic Norway.

The choir is currently made up of 30 singers from Norway, Sweden, Finland, and Russia. Its repertoire reflects the diversity of cultures in its surrounding regions, where music from the indigenous Sámi tradition is of great importance. Conducted by Dan Broch, the choir’s profane and ecclesiastical repertoire consists primarily of Norwegian, Sámi, Finnish, Swedish and Russian music.