Damijan Močnik On His Novelty JERUSALEM

Damijan Močnik

 Composer and conductor Damijan Močnik wrote a composition entitled JERUSALEM  for St. Stanislav Girls’ Choir to be performed at 11th World Symposium on Choral Music in July 2017 in Barcelona. Here are some of Močnik’s reflections on the piece: “Jerusalem means »the city of peace«; however, the city reflects the world we live in. Every morning it wakes up in restlessness, conflicts and hatred. The idea for the composition and its final form were maturing through numerous talks with my friend and conductor Helena Fojkar Zupančič and at rehearsals with the wonderful St. Stanislav Girls’ Choir of the Diocesan Classical Gymnasium.

In the composition JERUSALEM I have used the name of the city in several languages (Egyptian, Aramean, Akkadian, Hebrew, Arab, Greek, Latin and Slovene) and applied the sections from Psalm 121 in 5 languages (English, Hebrew, Arab, Latin and Slovene). As Jerusalem is the holy city for the three biggest monotheistic religions, I have used different images deriving from Jewish, Christian and Muslim music. What has been created is a picturesque and powerful fresco, which depicts on one hand, an enormous contrast, but on the other, a fervent wish for peace.” /Damijan Močnik/


Poet Bluma Finkelstein Meets Students of The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium


Within the framework of the 49th International Writers’ Meeting in Bled, Slovenia, The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium had the honour of hosting Bluma Finkelstein, a poet and professor of French Literature at the University of Haifa in Isreal. The meeting with third year students took place on 10th May 2017 at 11.00p.m. in the A. Breznik School Library.

Bluma Finkelstein was born in Romania, but was forced to leave her homeland at an early age and has been leaving in Israel ever since. She is an active freedom fighter and has received several prizes for her engagement in this field. Bluma Finklestein has published 25 collections of poems, and 3 essays on Christian- Jewish dialogue. The moderator of the event was Ignacija Jarc Friedl, to who we are most grateful for bringing such a distinguished guest to St. Stanislav’s Institution. We are most grateful for such a lively meeting with the acclaimed poet and the discussion on the current issues as well as simply enjoying the good poetry reading./Lily Schweiger Kotar/

»Indescribably beautiful«

Susan Coontz Was Presented a Diploma by Simon Feštanj, Head of DCG

….  are the words by Susan Coontz which summarise many facts, but above all, they refer to ten years of fruitful cooperation between Wellington School in Ayr, Scotland and The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium, the relationship that has developed ever since things set off and the trustful atmosphere among teachers and students involved. Last but not least, the two words describe the three days from 5th-8th May 2017, which Mrs Coontz spent in St. Stanislav’s Institution and were marked with several highlights, among which the 24th Annual Concert of St. Stanislav’s Choirs and a cosy trip to Vipava Valley need to be mentioned. She featured as a special guest at the concert and was awarded a diploma that explained why Mrs Coontz is the heart and soul of exchanges – it is her eager commitment and continual support during the past ten years of fruitful cooperation /…/and the high level of her personal engagement in this matter. The schools have been involved in the following international projects: UCAP, Commenius, Erasmus +, and some individual exchanges between Wellington and St. Stanislav’s.

I trust that as long as students are in the hands of such committed teachers and take the opportunity to travel, meet new people, embrace unknown cultures and learn to live in peace and understanding of all kinds – there is nothing to fear. In this way, the present and the future are indescribably beautiful. /Lily Schweiger Kotar/

24th Annual Concert of the Choirs and Orchestra of St. Stanislav’s Institution

Singing Boosts Happiness

Cordially invited to the traditional concert, which will take place on Saturday, 6th May, 2017 at 6.00 p.m. in Gallus Hall in Cankarjev Dom (Ljubljana). The entire choir pyramid of St. Stanislav’s Institution, consisting of almost 500 singers, along with the string orchestra will perform at the concert entitled Song Invigurates. A variety of compositions ranging from renaissance and classicism to rock and folk music will be put on stage. The concert will include also the novelty piece by Damijan Močnik  Jerusalem/ Yerushalayim performed by St. Stanislav Girls’ Choir.

Tickets are available in St. Stanislav’s Institution (call ++386 31 708 313), or on the concert day, an hour before the beginning of the concert in the first foyer in Cankarjev dom.



Maruška Schenk, Student of DCG, Attends the Award Ceremony in Brussels, Belgium

Maruška at the Award Ceremony in Brussels

Maruška Schenk is a third-year student of The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium and a national winner of the constest Juvenes Translatores 2016. The aim of the contest, which took place in November, is to promote language learning in schools and give young people a taste of what it is like to be a translator. This year 751 schools from all over Europe participated, 8 of which were from Slovenia. All official languages of the European Union were available for translating. It is recommended for students to translate into their mother tongue or into the language they most use. Maruška translated from German to Slovene.

This is how she reports from her experience in Brussels, where she travelled with her mentor Mirjam Lindič, teacher of German at the Diocesan Classical Gymnasium: »The main purpose of our visit was to attend the Award Ceremony in Brussels. During that time, I had the chance to meet and get to know all the winners. There, the European Commissioner Oettinger, the Director of the translation department Martikonis and the winners from Ireland, Spain, Lithuania and the Czech Republic gave a speech, all in their native language. Next to our seats were headphones, which we could use, to listen to the simultaneous interpreting of what was said. This was an interesting experience. Although this was a formal event, the atmosphere was very relaxed and pleasant. A refreshment with drinks followed, where I had the chance to talk to Slovenian translators from Luxembourg. Lastly, we went to a Greek restaurant for dinner and with that the day came to an end. We spent our free time walking around Brussels, sightseeing and buying novelty goods. On Friday afternoon all the winners, their teachers and parents went to the General Directorate of Translation, where three Slovenian translators work. One of them is Mrs Golobič, who showed us around her office and described what her normal workday looks like. Sadly, this was the last stop of our visit. I will always remember these three days. I learned many new things and met a lot of nice people.

I believe the contest Juvenes Translatores is an excellent opportunity for young people, who like languages and want to try translating themselves, to show off their language skills. They are something great to have in life, because it opens up new horizons and enriches your entire life. « /Maruška Schenk, year 3/


Helena Fojkar Zupančič: »What keeps me going? Look at the girls! They are my drive!«

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St. Stanislav Girls’ Choir

These words by Helena F. Zupančič, the conductor of St. Stanislav Girls’ Choir of The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium, rounded off the Gala Concert that took place on 19th April 2017 in St. Stanislav’s Institution. The house was full; almost 800 listeners enjoyed every minute of it, awarding the choir and the prominent guests with standing ovations. No wonder – all performers showed an enviable level of artistry, taking the audience on a music trip from classics to rock, from vocal to instrumental, from Slovene to foreign, from well-established pieces to novelties. Among these, the following songs need to be mentioned: Chilcott’s God of the Open Air, Močnik’s Jerusalem/Yerushalayim and Lebič’ Nekaj je v zraku /Something is in the air/. The concert featured the following guests: WildArt, the winners of the show Slovenia’s Got Talent 2016; internationally renowned vocal ensemble Ingenium Ensemble; (Re)Mixed Choir of The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium and the programme host Carmen L. Oven.

The event was much more than a fundraising concert for St. Stanislav Girls’ Choir to travel to Barcelona and participate in the 11th World Symposium on Choral Music in July 2017. The concert marvellously mirrored youth’s beauty, energy and commitment to a common goal. This was a topmost event in terms of content, music and technical qualities. One of the girls from St. Stanislav Girls’ Choir posted the following impressions after the concert:” We all feel contented and thankful. I am still overwhelmed by tonight’s beautiful melodies, incredible energy and heavenly feelings, that still resound inside me. /…/ We feel grateful to all those who came to the concert and support our endeavours, helping our dreams come true. /…/ “.

Helena Fojkar Zupančič says St. Stanislav Girls’ Choir will definitely make a remarkable difference in Barcelona. The goal of the concert was helping the choir to get there. I cannot find more appropriate words to top off this writing than by using the verses of Freddie Mercury’s Barcelona. We had the pleasure of listening to it in the interpretation of (Re)Mixed Choir of The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium with two splendid soloists, Marta Močnik and Miha Klemenc:

»Let the songs begin
Let the music play
Make the voices sing
Start the celebration
And cry – Come alive
And shake the foundations from the skies
Ah, Ah, Shaking all our lives …«

/Lily Schweiger Kotar/


Irish Ambassador to Slovenia Visits The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium

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Selfie with Ambassador O’Regan

Ambassador Sean O’Regan visited St. Stanislav’s Institution on 20th April 2017. He met with third year students and discussed several topics, including his role and duties as a diplomat, work experience in Slovenia and other countries he has served. He also spoke some Irish and taught the class a few basic phrases. The ambassador answered a variety of students’ questions. They were most interested in how ambassador’ work affects his family life. After a coffee break with the headmaster and some English teachers, he was given a guided tour of the school by one of the students, which offered a revealing insight into school history, programme, curriculum and student life. Possible options of student exchange with an Irish high school were discussed. The meeting was organised by Tatjana Jarc, teacher of English at the Diocesan Classical Gymnasium. / Ajda Kok, year 3/

Ambassador of Ireland to the Republic of Slovenia H.E. Seán O’Regan to Visit St. Stanislav’s Institution

Photo by Trinity College Dublin

On Thursday, 20th April 2017, St. Stanislav’s Institution will welcome the Irish Ambassador H.E. Seán O’Regan. He will meet some third year students and have a discussion on the diplomatic relationship between Ireland and Slovenia, Brexit, a job of a diplomat and other topics. He will also take a tour of St. Stanislav’s Institution. This is his first visit to St. Stanislav’s Institution and the school community is looking forward to the occasion. /Lily Schweiger Kotar/

Winning Team Škofijci Revival Visits ECB Seat in Frankfurt, Germany

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Team Škofijci Revival

Team Škofijci revival – Katarina Grad, Lara Meglen, Petra Vidmar, Tomaž Rode (year 4) and Matej Urbančič (year 2) –  along with their mentor Tadej Rifel, Ph. D. attended a prize trip to Frankfurt from 4th – 5th April 2017 as the winning team of this year’s Generation Euro competition in Slovenia. Mrs. Sanja Pregl, a representative of the Bank of Slovenia, accompanied us on behalf of the organizers.

After a joint breakfast, we went to the headquarters of the European Central Bank (ECB), where we first met with a former student of The Diocesan Classical Gymnasium, Timotej Homar, Ph. D., who works in the field of bank supervision. This was followed by lunch and a guided tour of the main building of the ECB. We also attended the celebration of the issuance of the new 50 € banknote. In the afternoon, a tour to the city was arranged, unforgettable for its excellent guidance. The day ended with dinner out and an informal gathering with participants from other countries.

The next day was more learning-oriented, with a morning lecture on bank supervision in the EU and a discussion with experts. The group photograph and lunch were followed by the culmination of our two-day trip: a conversation with the President of the ECB, Mario Draghi. Besides answering a few questions on monetary policy, the president highlighted the values of the EU and the importance of the euro for its unity. Next on the schedule was the award ceremony. We were really proud to receive the award from the hands of President Draghi! This marked the end of the event. Four team members promptly left for Rome, where we joined the rest of the graduates on the excursion. The other three participants spent a few remaining hours in the city. /Tomaž Rode, year 4/

View the video of the event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XC-EXhPPaN0


Easter Greetings 2017

Stane Jarm, Christ (watercolour; from the collection of artworks donated to St. Stanislav’s Institution by Gregor Dolšak)

What is in the spirit of the night; Your ruby light shines through, what is a sore, You heal, dry riverbeds; You transform into green waters, what is blind and muted ice You melt. And then a different vision rises through the spirit: from the healed sores; blessed with a light-red transparency breezes in a youthful shine the power of Your Resurrection.  (Vladimir Truhlar)

Dear friends, our fragile and wounded lives are illuminated with the rays of redemptive light. Life is stronger than death, love is stronger than hatred and hope is stronger than fear. Let the celebration of these festive days strengthen our faith in the power of Life, fill us with new hope and give us courage to bring and promote life around us.

We wish you a Happy Easter!

Roman Globokar, PhD, Director of St. Stanislav’s Institution