LISBON SINGS 2023: Voices of the world unite

Choirs from 16 countries kick off a week of singing and culture


On the evening of November 9, 2023, the Aula Magna resonated with the melodious voices of choirs from across the globe, marking the official opening of the international choir competition and festival “LISBON SINGS 2023”.

With 35 choirs from 16 countries participating in 8 competition categories, LISBON SINGS promises a diverse and vibrant celebration of the choral arts – and the Opening Concert gave a fantastic foretaste.

The evening began with the Coro da Universidade de Lisboa, setting the stage for a night filled with cultural richness. Traditional Portuguese pieces, "Este linho e mourisco" and "Cancao da Vindima," gave a warm welcome to the host country, captivating the international audience.

INTERKULTUR Artistic Director Johan Rooze, took the stage, extending a warm welcome to participants and acknowledging the global representation, according to the motto of INTERKULTUR, "Singing together brings nations together."

The international lineup continued with Vocal Group Korona from Slovenia, presenting short pieces that showcased the richness of Slovenian musical tradition. Maria Jose Capitao, as a representative of INTERKULTUR’s local partners in Lisbon, also addressed a warm welcome to the international participants: “It is with great joy that we welcome you to this special evening where the harmony of music meets the beauty of our city. Choral music has the power to touch our hearts and unite souls through its enchanting melodies. These concerts are a celebration of art, culture, and a passion for music, and we are thrilled to share this moment with you.”

The concert continued with Ellerhein Girls Choir from Estonia, conducted by Ingrid Korvits, which showcased the beauty of Estonian compositions by Veljo Tormis.

Ellerhein Girls Choir, Estonia © INTERKULTUR

The night culminated with a captivating performance by another ensembles from the host country, Nova Era, featuring pieces by Ēriks Ešenvalds, Eurico Carrapatoso, and Johannes Brahms. João Barros, the conductor, also a member of the international jury at LISBON SINGS 2023, led the choir through a powerful rendition.

The Opening Concert of LISBON SINGS 2023 was a celebration of cultural diversity, artistic excellence, and the unifying power of choral harmony. With competitions, concerts, and cultural exchanges ahead, the upcoming days at LISBON SINGS promise an unforgettable experience for participants and audiences alike!

For the full schedule, check out the official program book. Follow the event also on Facebook and Instagram for more photos, videos and stories!