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Participating choirs 2019
The supervisory committee of the International Chamber Choir Competition Marktoberdorf has invited 14 mixed choirs from 110 countries to participate in the 16th International Chamber Choir Competition Marktoberdorf to be held from 7th to 11th June 2019. They come from Cuba, Turkey, Ireland, Russia, Sweden, the Czech Republic, the Philippines, Germany, USA and Switzerland. Please look forward to a wonderful competition in the anniversary year.
The Junge Consortium Berlin belonged only two years after its founding in autumn 2015 to one of the best youth choirs in Germany. The ensemble is made up of some 30 singers between 16 and 26 years old who have discovered the mixed a-cappella choral sound for themselves. The repertoire ranges from the Renaissance to modern contemporary works. It is not just the preservation of cultural values which is at the centre of their work bu also its revival and interpretation. A pure intonation, a musically demanding programme and an extraordinary homogenous sound combined with a youthful tonal colour form the artistic basis of the ensemble. All the members have years of choral experience, often together, which has created a feeling of close togetherness and an atmosphere of trust.
Das Junge Consortium Berlin stands for diversity, tolerance and equal opportunity! The singers are actively involved locally and internationally in the breaking down of barriers in order to create a place where young people, whatever their background and financial possibilities, can overcome borders together.
Dirigent: Vinzenz Weissenburger
Vinzenz Weissenburger (*1980) completed his studies with a degree as a certified sound engineer at the University of Arts in Berlin. Already during his studies he was awarded several first prizes at international competitions. From 2005 to 2011 he studied conducting at the University for Music in Dresden under Hans-Christoph Rademann (choir) and under Ekkehard Klemm and Christian Kluttig (orchestra). He further developed his competence in master classes with the Hilliard Ensemble, the Berlin Broadcasting Choir (Simon Halsey and Grete Pederson) and at the Stuttgart Bach Week (Helmuth Rilling).
In September 2015 he founded the youth chamber choir "Junges Consortium Berlin", which already at its first competition in February 2017 won three gold medals at the Prix of Nations. At this competition, Vinzenz Weissenburger was awarded a special prize for "excellent conducting".
The Vokalensemble Zurich West was founded in the autumn of 2015 by Marco Amherd in order to give young ambitious singers the opportunity to perform exciting choral music at the highest level. Among them are many students from the Zurich universities. The Vokalensemble prepares several concert programmes every year and seeks to take part in festivals and competitions. In 2017, the ensemble, taking part for the first time, won first prize in the elite category of the Swiss Choir Competition. At the Choral Festival in Montreux in 2018, the ensemble won the first prize as well as the public prize.
Dirigent: Marco Amherd
Marco Amherd (*1988) studied conducting, organ/church music (concert, teaching and soloist degree) and economic science in Zurich, Freiburg im Breisgau and Toulouse. He finished all his studies with excellence. Since August 2015 he has been the choirmaster at the Johannes Church in Zurich. He teaches organ at the Zurich Music School Conservatoire and is a lecturer for choral conducting at the Zurich University for the Arts. In addition to his many organ concerts, he also conducts several professional and semi-professional ensembles in the Zurich region.
Since 2016 Marco Amherd has held a scholarship from the Conducting Forum of the German Music Council. Within the framework of this support, he has worked with such ensembles as the NDR Choir, the WDR Choir, the Choir of the Dresden Semperoper, the Berlin Philharmonic Choir and the Saarbrücken Chamber Choir.
Vocal Leo, founded in 1993 as a project choir by Corina Campos and Professor Jorge Luis Pacheco, brings together students and graduates from the faculties for singing and choral conducting of the Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA) Havana.
The choir has already worked together with musical personalities such as Gary Graden, Guido López Gavilán and Roberto Valera. During its concert tours, Vocal Leo has also distinguished itself at international competitions. The choir won, among other things, two gold medals at the Choir Olympics in Bremen in 2004, two first prizes at the Cantonigrós International Choir Competition in Barcelona (1998 and 2008) as well as recently the first prize at the international choir competition "Jalisco Canta" in Mexico in 2015.
The repertoire of the choir includes, in addition to classical choral works, symphonic choral and operatic pieces. The choir will present itself to the Allgäu public in particular with Cuban rhythms.
Dirigentin: Corina Campos Morales
Corina Campos Morales studied conducting at the Superior Music Institute for Arts in Havanna. In addition to her activities as a conductor, she teaches choral conducting at the Amadeo Roldan Conservatoire in Havanna and gives workshops in many countries in Central and South America.
For 17 years, she led the choirs of the Opera Nacional de Cuba and the Gran Teatro de La Habana. As a member of various groups furthering and developing Cuban choral music, she plays a significant role in the development of choral music in her home country.
Founded in 2010 by Burak Onur Erdem, Rezonans has developed in a short time to become one of the most important choirs in Turkey. In addition to many concerts in their home country, the choir has performed at the festivals Europa Cantat in Pecs and Tallinn and has taken part successfully in international competitions. At the Fleischmann International Trophy Competition in Cork, Rezonans won the second prize in 2016. In 2017, the choir was awarded a third prize at the Guido Polifonico in Arezzo.
The ensemble has worked together with such famous choral conductors as Eric Whitacre, Nigel Short, Volker Hempfling and Georg Grün, as well as with such well known ensembles as the Yale Schola Cantorum, the Salt Lake Choral Artists and the Junges Vokalensemble Hannover. By the most important music magazine in Turkey, "Andante", Rezonans was named choir of the year in 2017 and awarded the Donizetti Classical Music Award.
In addition to performing works from the German Romantic era, the choir also concentrates its artistic activites on works from Turkish composers from the 20th and 21st centuries, including premieres of Hasan Uçarsu and Özkan Manav.
Dirigent: Burak Onur Erdem
Burak Onur Erdem (*1986) at first studied political science and international relations at the Boğaziçi University.
There followed studies in music theory and conducting at the Center for Advanced Studies in Music at the Technical University in Istanbul. He developed his conducting abilities at master classes, among others with Johannes Prinz, Maria Guinand, Volker Hempfling and Michael Gohl. Since 2013 Burak Onur Erdem has worked with the Turkish State Choir, becoming its Artistic Director and Chief Conductor in 2017.
As a platform for developing choral music in Turkey and the international specialist exchange of ideas, Burak Onur Erdem founded the organization Koro Kulturu. He is a member of the board and the music committee of the European Choral Association - Europa Cantat (ECA-EC) and since 2018 a member of the board of the International Federation for Choral Music (IFCM).
The Cantica Laetitia chamber choir was founded in 2004 in Zlín originally as a selected girls' ensemble of the Cantica children's choir. As a mixed choir, Cantica Laetitia has performed since 2012. From its very beginning, the choir has been conducted by Josef Surovíc. The choir's repertoire is based on the music of the 20th and 21st century, among others with works from Eric Whitacre, Vytautas Miškinies and Petr Eben and it often focuses on premieres of new pieces. The choir's challenging and colourful repertoire makes possible a very varied performance programme for which Cantica Laetitia has received several awards. Cantica Laetitia regularly co-operates with the Bohuslav Martinů Philharmonic Orchestra Zlín and the children‘s opera Zlín.
Dirigent: Josef Surovík
Josef Surovíc (*1975) is the founder and conductor of the Cantica Laetitia mixed choir. He studied church music and singing at the Church Conservatoire Kroměříž. In 1998 he founded the childrens‘ choir Cantica Zlín. As a conductor Josef Surovíc was awarded several prizes such as the National Prize choirmaster-junior from the Czech Choirs Union. He is a regular lecturer at conducting courses and a member of juries in many choir singing competitions.
New Dublin Voices play a leading role in performing, premiering, commissioning and disseminating Irish choral music, and in introducing international choral music to Irish audiences. The choir has given more than 50 world premieres.
Die New Dublin Voices wurden bei bedeutenden Wettbewerben in Frankreich, Ungarn, Deutschland und anderen Ländern ausgezeichnet. Die jüngsten Erfolge sind der Gewinn des 1. Preises beim Internationalen Chorwettbewerb Béla Bartók 2018 in Debrecen, Ungarn, sowie der Grand Prix-Sieg beim International Baltic Sea Choral Competition 2017 in Jurmala, Lettland. Frühere Auszeichnungen waren unter anderem der 1. Preis beim Cork International Choral Festival 2015 und der Gewinn des Grand Prix beim Guido Polifonico d' Arezzo 2013.
New Dublin Voices regularly performs at prestigious international fesivals including, mostly recently, the triennial World Symposium on Choral Music in Barcelona (2017) and the Association of British Choral Directors Annual Convention Gala Concert (2018).
Dirigentin: Bernie Sherlock
Bernie Sherlock has an international profile as a choral expert, adjudicator and teacher of conducting. She has won several international prizes for her conducting and interpretation. She is a Lecturer in Music at the DIT Consevatory of Music and Drama and Artistic Director of the AOIC annual Inernational Conducting Summer School.
The young vocal ensemble Intrada is distinguished by its high professional level and its special style. Founded in 2006 in Moscow, the singers have already sung in the most prestigious concert halls in Russia and performed internationally together with such famous ensembles and conductors as Friedre Bernius and Hans-Christoph Rademann. In 2014, Intrada and Peter Phillips initiated the memorial festival for Sir John Tavener. In 2017 Intrada performed its debut at the Dresden Music festival.
Intrada is responsible for many Russian first performances of 20th century contemporary works, including the Mass for double choir from F. Martin and "The little Match Girl Passion" from David Lang. In 2018 Intrada was awarded the title of "Best Moscow Choir" by the periodical "Musical Life".
Dirigentin: Ekaterina Antonenko
Ekaterina Antonenko studied choral conducting at the Moscow State Tchaikovsky Conservatory. From 2010 to 2012 she studied with a DAAD scholarship at the Cologne University for Music and Dance under Prof. Marcus Creed. There followed master classes with Frieder Bernius, Marc Minkowski and Hans-Christoph Rademann, with whom she had already worked several times together with the RIAS Chamber Choir and the Dresden Chamber Choir. Since 2012, Ekaterina Antonenko has been a teacher at the Tchaikovsky Conservatory.
The Härlanda Chamber Choir was founded in 2007 and has since then compiled a broad repertoire from various eras, from Claudio Monteverdis "Marienvesper" to John Taveners "Ikon of Light". In addition, the choir has recorded a CD with Swedish folk music.
The singers of the Härlanda Chamber Choir are for the most part music students who give the choirs its youthful freshness but still with a mature sound. In addition to regular concerts in the Härlanda church in Gothenburg, the choir also gives concerts internationally.
Dirigent: David Molin
The founder and conductor of the Härlanda Chamber Choir, David Molin, is a church musician at the Härlanda church in Gothenburg. He himself is an experienced singer and has sung in such famous choirs as the Simon Phipps Vocal Ensemble, nowadays known as the Swedish Chamber Choir. As a conductor, David Molin trained in master classes with Stefan Parkman, Denis Rouger and Jörg-Peter Weigle.
The University of the Philippines Los Baños Choral Ensemble has been the official representative of the University of Los Baños since 1991. The singers want to create an awareness of the beauty of the arts in the scientifically orientated atmosphere of the university. The choirs sings regularly at university events but also organizes choral workshops and concert tours throughout the Philippines. Longer tours have led the choir through Asia, Europe and Australia. As winners of the 3rd Andrea O. Veneracion International Choral Festival, the choir will represent its home country at the 1st Asia Choral Grand Prix in July 2019.
Dirigent: Roijin G. Suarez
Since 2009, Roijin Galaruan Suarez has been a member of the University of the Philippines Los Baños Choral Ensemble and its conductor since 2017. He visited master classes with, among others, Mark Anthony Carpio and the Philippine Madrigal Singers. At the 10th Orientale Concentus International Choral Festival in Singapore in 2017 he was awarded the prize for the best young conductor.
Los Cantantes de Manila brings together students and young professionals starting work who are all enthusiastic music fans. Since its founding in 2014, the choir under the leadership of Darwin Vargas has already won several national competitions and convinced in the international field. The choir won first prizes, among others at the Singapore International Choral Festival in 2018 and at the International Chamber Choir Competition Marktoberdorf in 2017 in the category for popular choral music. The choir's repertoire extends from old spiritual music to contemporary pop music.
Dirigent: Darwin B. Vargas
Darwin Vargas came through singing to conducting. In 2004 he was assistant conductor of A Cappella Manila. In 2005 he became a member of the University of the East Chorale under Anna Tabita Abeleda-Piquero. Through his contacts to European choirs and the participation in various workshops he developed his musical knowledge further. He took over the organization of several master classes in the Philippines, where he worked togheter with such famous conductors as Brady Allred, Vytautas Miškinis and Fred Sjöberg. At present, Darwin Vargas is, among other things, musical head of the University of the East Chorales and Los Cantantes de Manila.
Imusicapella was founded in 2002 as the church choir of the Imus Cathedral and the St. Peregrine Chapel in Imus Cavite in the Philippines. The non-profit amateur choir consists of young singers from the Philippine province of Cavite. The choir regularly sings in church services in his parish. Since being founded, the choir has made ten international concert tours in Europe, North America and Asia and has won numerous first prizes at international competitions, including in Varna, Tours, Debrecen, Busan and Takarazuka.
Dirigent: Tristan Caliston Ignacio
Tristan C. Ignacio (*1977) is the founder and conductor of Imusicapella. As a student he sang in the High School Choir of the University of Santo Tomas, where he obtained his degree as Bachelor of Science in tourism. As a conductor he has won several awards, among them at the International Chamber Choir Competition Marktoberdorf in 2007 and recently at the Béla Bártok International Choir Competition in 2018 in Debrecen. In his home country, he was awarded the Gawad Heneral Emilio Agiunaldo for his outstanding achievements in the area of music, the most prestigious award to be granted by the Province of Cavite.
The Georgia Southern Chorale is the musical flagship of the Georgia Southern University. It brings together students of singing with talented singers studying in other faculties. The repertoire of the choir covers works of all styles and eras mainly a-cappella literature and works with orchestral accompaniment.
In addition to numerous concerts at the university, the choir has already sung at conferences of the American Choral Directors Association, the National Collegiate Choral Organization and the National Association for Music Education. The choir has won many prizes including at the 4th International Anton Bruckner Choir Competition in Linz in 2013 and in the "Laurea Mundi Budapest" Festival of Choral Music in 2016.
Dirigentin: Dr. Shannon Jeffreys
Dr. Shannon Jeffreys was a teacher at the Erskine College Washington and at Andrew College Cuthbert, before she was called to the Professorship for Conducting and Music Teaching at the Georgia Southern University Statesboro.
Shannon Jeffreys is active as a prize judge, lecturer and guest conductor throughout America and as a jury member also in Europe. She is a member of the Artistic Committee of the organization "Music for All - National Choral Festivals".
The Rutgers University Kirkpatrick Choir is the concert choir of the Mason Gross School of Arts at the Rutgers University. The choral work is designed to supplement the theoretical training of the students with active concert practice. For this reason, the repertoire is very broad and stretches from well-known choral and orchestral works through baroque music accompanied by historical instruments up to music of the 20th and 21st centuries.
As a result of its outstanding achievements in the performance of contemporary music, the choir was commissionend from the Milken Archive of American Jewish Music to record Miriam Gideon's "Sacred Service". The recording was published as a part of a comprehensive recording project of the Archive covering several years. Further CD recordings have been published, among others by Naxos.
Dirigent: Patrick Gardner
Patrick Gardner is professor at the Mason Gross School of the Arts. As a conductor of many performances he gained recognition from such famous American composers as William Balcom, Jennifer Higdon and Tarik O'Regan. His performance of works from Lou Harrison at the Trinity Wall Street NYC was published by the New York Times in its list of the "Best Classical Performances of 2017".
The choir of the West is the leading vocal ensemble of the Pacific Lutheran University in Washington and was founded already in 1926. The choir has performed several times at the conferences of the National Association for Music Education and the American Choral Directors Association. Concert tours have taken the singers to Europe and Asia. The choir won international awards, among others at the Harmonie Festival in Lindenholzhausen in 2011 and the 5th International Anton Bruckner Choir Competition in Linz in 2015.
The choir of the West performs regularly at premieres by well-known composers. In 2017 it was involved in the US American premiere of Ēriks Ešenvalds' "Nordic Light Symphony". In April 2018 the singers worked for a week with Ešenvalds on a recording of a-cappella works which is to be published in 2019.
Dirigent: Richard Nance
The choral conductor, composer and music teacher, Richard Nance has taught since 1992 at the Pacific Lutheran University. He has published numerous compositions, including many commissioned works with Walton Music, Hishaw Music and Colla Voce. In 2011 and 2013 he was awarded the American Prize for Choral Conducting. Since 1977, Richard Nance has been active in various positions for the American Choral Directors Association.
Radiant, transparent, homogeneous and flexible: the Dresdner Kammerchor is valued internationally for the unique quality of its sound. The artistic director, Hans-Christoph Rademann defined this unmistakable sound from the very beginning in 1985 and led the choir to worldwide fame.
The versatile repertoire of the choir has its roots in baroque music with a particular emphasis on Saxon court music. As cultural ambassadors for Dresden and Saxony, the choir maintains and opens up the musical heritage of the region, making it known to an international public.
In addition to the choral symphonic music of the classic and romantic periods, their repertoire also focusses on ambitious a-cappella works from the 19th and 20th centuries, including works from Johannes Brahms, Max Reger, Olivier Messiaen, Francis Poulenc, Arnold Schönberg and Herman Berlinksi. For many years, the Dresdner Kammerchor has also dedicated itself intensively to modern and contemporary music, with premiers, first performances and their own commissioned works. These activities are supported by projects covering communication through music and with younger generations. In 2009 Hans-Christoph Rademann initiated, together with the Dresdner Kammerchor, the Dresden Choral Workshop for New Music. For its work with contemporary choral music, the choir was awarded a sponsorship prize from the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation.
The Dresdner Kammerchor has given guest appearances in music centres and festivals throughout Europe. The choir remains true to its roots through a cooperation with the Dresden University for Music.
Dir.: Michael Alber
From 1993 to 2012, Michael Alber was the choral director of the Staatsopernchor Stuttgart, together being, during his period, awarded the title of Operatic Choir of the Year nine times (the last time being in his final season). Since 2012 he has been Professor for Choral Conducting at the State University for Music in Trossingen.
Numerous concerts, and productions have long since strengthened his regular contacts with the RIAS Kammerchor, the Chor des Bayerischen Rundfunks, the SWR Vokalensemble and the Choeur Radio France. Further engagements led him to the Ruhrtriennale, where he worked on several operas with the ChorWerk Ruhr, including Helmut Lachenmanns "The Little Match Girl" and conducted works from Lachenmann and Stockhausen.
Michael Alber has conducted numerous premiers and is interested in a wide variety of styles. He concerns himself with a cappella chamber music literature from all periods as well as with large ensembles for oratorical and choral symphonic works.