Two choirs from St. Stanislav’s Institution won gold at the 25th National competition in choral singing which took place in Celje, Slovenia from 4th – 6th April 2016.
Fifty-two choirs with 2000 singers aged 13-20 from all over the country proved again that the Slovenians are a singing nation and encouraging music making systematically from an early age bears fruit, which is increasing the number of participants and more importantly the quality of singing nationwide.
Both, St. Stanislav Youth Choir of the Diocesan Classical Gymnasium and The Youth Choir of Alojzij Šuštar Primary School took part in the competition. St. Stanislav Youth Choir of the DCG, which is only one of the five choirs in the gymnasium, won the golden plaque and three special awards for the best youth mixed choir, the most creative programme and the most convincing performance of a contemporary song Miniwanka by Raymond Murray Schafer. The Youth Choir of Alojzij Šuštar Primary School under the conductorship of Nadja Janežič won the gold plaque with honour for their performance of the Slovene folk song Dečva nabira brančur (Gal is collecting brunches) by Jakob Jež. This was their first appearance at a competition on such level and the jury recognized the primary school choir as one of the best youth choirs in the country.
“For the choir any competition is always a pressing challenge as singers need to achieve their best in vocal, technical and artistic sense at a unique, specific moment”, said Damijan Močnik, conductor of the winning choir, teacher of music at the DCG, composer and member of the jury at the competition. “As for any conductor, my work starts much earlier. It is conductor’s job to find the repertoire that shows off the choir’s strong points and hides the potentially weak ones. The choir needs to impress both the audience and the jury, which happened tonight. On such occasions, it is of outmost importance to be able to focus. I, myself, usually do it by walking up and down in front of the choir. There was a singer who came up to me with a reassuring message – Do not be nervous! We can do this! – and they did indeed. I also appreciate choir’s self-confident attitude very much. This is one of the best things music making does to young people!”
Music importantly and decisively underpins the curriculum of all schools in St. Stanislav’s Institution, but this is especially the case in the Diocesan Classical Gymnasium, where almost half of the students (about 300) participate in choral singing. Every year the choirs of St. Stanislav’s Institution, together with two alumni choirs (there are eight of them all together) participate in the annual concert. This year it will be on 15th May, 2016 at 6 p.m. in Cankarjev dom, Ljubljana, to which you are kindly invited. Come and see yourselves how music transforms the souls and minds of the young – even today! /Lily Schweiger Kotar/
Listen to the recording of St. Stanislav Youth Choir of the DCG at 25th National Choral Competition: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AHgNmSa8yDI&list=PLZ4NSqkyW0tV_bH2tyGLtDptLZjOsXg1I