The Stellenbosch University Choir from South Africa

A list of the world's best amateur choirs

Günter Titsch talks about the INTERKULTUR World Ranking List

INTERKULTUR President Günter Titsch

Since over 25 years INTERKULTUR competitions belong to the most innovative events of the international choral community. They are the core of our numerous activities and have strongly influenced the behavior of choirs all over the world regarding their pursuit for achievements.

Our competitions are based on the MUSICA MUNDI quality seal. This means that from the announcement up to the organization the same measurable parameters of quality can be applied for all events. This makes all events worldwide comparable regardless in which country they are taking place.

During numerous conversations people appealed to us that due to the large number of competitions we should establish a greater comparison of all choirs by establishing a ranking. After a due consideration we decided in 2005 that an INTERKULTUR World Ranking List could strongly support a sound comparison of choirs among each other. And especially with regards to the top end of the world-beating amateur choirs this could initiate an enormous stimulation.

We could not have guessed that especially the world ranking list and the ranking of choirs and countries would have such an enormous influence.  Apart from boosting achievements and the motivation for participating in our events and certain categories, the list is first and foremost an instrument for generating support by sponsors, administrations and institutions. In short: The World Ranking List became a scheme which reflects the choirs‘ level of achievement according to our system not only in the upper part of the ranking but rather in all parts of the chart.

The INTERKULTUR World Ranking List represents an achievement and quality system and includes choirs that have participated in INTERKULTUR competitions during the past five years. According to a particular chart the competition results are being converted into points of the ranking system. Due to this process different categories receive different priorities. In addition several bonus criteria for special achievements such as a onetime or multiple category win, champion titles and Grand Prix victories are being applied.

Based on the main list which lists the top 1000 choirs separate lists have been generated which demonstrate the performances of different choral categories. This includes Children and Youth Choirs, Mixed Choirs, Female Choirs, Male Choirs, Chamber Choirs and Vocal Ensembles, Sacred Choir Music, Pop-Jazz-Gospel-Spiritual & Barbershop Choirs and Folklore.

Currently the Top 10 of the World Ranking List includes choirs from South Africa, the USA, China, Austria, Hungary, Latvia, Germany and Sweden. The list is presently headed by the Stellenbosch University Choir from South Africa, conducted by André van der Merwe (1260 points of 1272 points possible).