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Support for the International Choral Biennale Haarlem

With a very own outlook on choral song, the Internationale Koorbiënnale Haarlem (International Choral Biennale Haarlem) attracted the attention of The Bunschoten Fund. This organization places singing right in the middle of society, from top choirs coming from the Netherlands and abroad, to amateur ensembles that perform during the open and free ‘Hofjesconcerten’. The Bunschoten Fund has supported the Choral Biennale 2015 with € 7500.

We sing together to celebrate our lives, to commemorate our dead, to seduce one another or to tell stories. All of this, and more, will be on the program during the 8th edition of the Choral Biennale. From June 26 to July 5, 2015 the heart of Haarlem will host concerts given by leading vocal ensembles from the Netherlands and abroad. The Grote of St. Bavokerk (the Great or St. Bavo Church), the Waalse Kerk (the Walloon Church), the Philharmonie and several (outdoor) locations are the podium for The Sixteen, het Nederlands Kamerkoor (the Dutch Chamber Choir), Cappella Amsterdam, Ensemble Amarcord, Wishful Singing, Música Temprana, The Scottish Choir of St. Salvator’s Chapel, Cunfraterna di a Serra from Corsica, Lo Cór de la Plana from France and the Rundfunkchor Berlin.

On Sunday June 28 some forty amateur ensembles will sing at the popular and freely accessible ‘Hofjesconcerten’. Under the banner ‘Singing of today’ the Biennale brings old and brand-new music for vocal ensembles back to the place where it really belongs: in the heart of our lives and our society. The best locations are the scenery for musical happenings of the highest level, while the boundaries between performers and public fade or even disappear.

Some highpoints:

  • The Missa Salisburgensis (1682) by Von Biber opens the festival. 120 performers bring to life this spectacular Mass from the High Baroque in the Grote or St. Bavokerk in Haarlem.
  • In This is your Life important moments in life are addressed. Stories from ‘ordinary’ concert visitors, told to presenter Lex Bohlmeijer, are the starting points of applicable choral music sung by Cappella Amsterdam.
  • In the Misa Criolla by Música Temprana and the multimedia Night for the Unknown Soldier by the Choir of St. Salvator’s Chapel, St Andrews the victims of war are commemorated with forceful music of life.
  • In Ballroom Dreams the men of the Amarcord ensemble and the women of Wishful Singing seduce each other singing to old and new jazz music.
  • A hearty menu of eating, drinking and singing together is served by La Cunfraterna di a Serra from Corsica, followed by a concert of rough harbor songs from Marseille by Lo Cór de la Plana.
  • As always there is the festivity of the free accessible ‘Hofjesconcerten’ on Sunday June 28.
  • A Choral Night, when the audience is divided into groups which will bike through nocturnal Haarlem to listen to small focal ensembles on several secret locations.

For the second time the Choral Biennale will spread its wings to Amsterdam for a collaboration with the Muziekgebouw aan ’t IJ. This edition will close at that location with one of the greatest, recent successes of the Berlin concert and theater season: Human Requiem. The Rundfunkchor Berlin will give a performance of Johannes Brahms’ Ein Deutsches Requiem in the version for piano with four hands and a semi-scenic direction by Jochen Sandig and Sascha Waltz.