Fest der Chorkulturen
„Alle Menschen werden Brüder“
In 2020 we celebrate Beethoven's 250th birthday with a great festival of choral cultures in the German capital: the Fest der Chorkulturen!
In cooperation with the Berlin Radio Choir, some of the best amateur choirs in the world will meet in Berlin to sing together, showcase the culture of their home countries on an international stage and celebrate a wonderful festival of friendship with the Berlin audience.
The event will focus on a unique world premiere: "Ever Us" is a piece by the British composer Roxanna Panufnik with a text by Jessica Duchen, which was written especially for the occasion.
In this work for 10 choirs and orchestra, each choir presents itself in an own part with its own special coloring, while the Rundfunkchor Berlin as the host guides through the piece.
Immediately afterwards the last movement of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony will be heard in a grand finale, where all performers and singers in the audience will join in: the "Ode to Joy".
A varied supporting program will fill other churches and stages in Berlin.
YOU ARE INVITED
With the Festival of Choral Cultures 2020, we are welcoming some of the world's best amateur choirs to Berlin for the second time this year, turning the German capital into an international meeting place for choral music. INTERKULTUR and the Rundfunkchor Berlin will bring together nations and cultures from all over the world on stage in musical harmony, presenting the central message of Ludwig van Beethoven's 9th symphony: the bond between people in all their great diversity.
Welcome to the Festival of Choral Cultures 2020 in Berlin!
At the heart of the event is a unique premiere: "Ever Us" is a piece written especially for the occasion by the British composer Roxanna Panufnik with a text by Jessica Duchen. Each of the nine participating international choirs will present their own part with its own special colouring, while the Rundfunkchor Berlin as host will lead through the piece. In a grand finale, the last movement of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony will be heard immediately afterwards, in which all participants and fellow singers in the audience will join in together: the "Ode to Joy".
- ARAM, GRSM(hons), LRAM studied composition at the Royal Academy of Music and, since then, has written a wide range of pieces – opera, ballet, music theatre, choral works, orchestral and chamber compositions, and music for film and television – which are performed all over the world. She has a great love of music from a huge variety of cultures and different faiths, whose influence she uses liberally through out her compositions. 2018, Roxanna’s 50th Birthday year, saw some exciting commissions and premieres for the BBC Last Night of the Proms and a co-commissioned oratorio “Faithful Journey – a Mass for Poland” for City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and National Radio Symphony Orchestra of Poland, marking Poland’s centenary as an independent state. 2019 incuded a new commission for two conductors and two choirs, premiered by Marin Alsop and Valentina Peleggi with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and 2020 will see the world premiere of “Ever Us” for 10 choirs + symphony orchestra commissioned by the Rundfunkchor Berlin’s 2020 Beethoven anniversary celebrations.
- Jessica Duchen studied music in Cambridge and piano at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and worked for many years as an editor for music publishers and magazines. Jessica combines her love of music with writing. She is the author of several novels and composer biographies and has written the libretti for numerous award-winning operas and choral works.
The Fringe Festival brings INTERKULTUR choirs to Berlin's most famous stage, the Berlin Philharmonie.
We celebrate Beethoven's 250th birthday with a project of superlatives. Rehearsals with the Rundfunkchor in the Haus des Rundfunks, performance of Bernstein's Chichester Psalms and the 4th movement of Beethoven's Ninth with final chorus on Schiller's ode "An die Freude" in the Berlin Philharmonie as part of a spectacular concert with 1,200 participants from all over the world.
In addition to the performance in the Philharmonie, the selected choirs of the Fringe Festival will take part in a welcome concert, a jam session, a concert with a partner choir and a choir matinee as part of the supporting program.
WEDNESDAY, 29 APRIL 2020
- Welcome Concert
- (Venue TDB)
THURSDAY, APRIL 30, 2020
Haus des Rundfunks (Room 1)
- 11:00 - 15:00 piano rehearsal I
- 17:00 - 19:00 piano rehearsal II
FRIDAY, MAY 1, 2020
Berlin Philharmonic Hall - Great Hall
- 11:00 - 12:20 Amber sample
- 12:40 - 14:00 rehearsal Panufnik (soloist ensembles) and Beethoven (tutti)
FRIDAY, MAY 1, 2020 - CONCERT PROGRAMME
- 18:30 Philharmonie Berlin
- "Chichester Psalms"
- for boy solo, choir, organ, harp and percussion
- Showcases Rundfunkchor Berlin and soloist ensembles
- "Ever Us" for ten choirs and orchestra (premiere, commissioned work
- of the Rundfunkchor Berlin for radio choir and nine guest choirs)
- on texts by Jessica Duchen after Beethoven, Schiller, Goethe, Sturm, Tiedge and Kan
Ludwig van Beethoven
- Symphony No. 9 in D minor op. 125, 4th movement with
- Final chorus of Schiller's ode "To Joy"
As of 22:15 Jam session in the foyer with radio singer Holger Marks & Friends
SATURDAY, MAY 2, 2020
- Morning at leisure
- afternoon rehearsals and international concerts in the city (3 choirs each)
- Choir night with performances in different churches
SUNDAY, MAY 3, 2020
- Choir Matinee in Berlin Mitte
Subject to change!
If you are interested in individual excursions please send an email to travel(at)interkultur.com.
With around 60 concerts a year, CD recordings and guest appearances at international festivals, the Rundfunkchor Berlin is one of the world's outstanding choirs. Three Grammy Awards alone stand for the quality of its recordings. Its wide-ranging repertoire, a flexible, richly nuanced sound, flawless precision and gripping response make the professional choir a partner of major orchestras and conductors, including the Vienna Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic and conductors such as Sir Simon Rattle, Christian Thielemann and Daniel Barenboim. In Berlin, the choir works closely with the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra, the Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin and the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin.
The Rundfunkchor Berlin also attracts international attention with its interdisciplinary projects, with which it brings choral music to life in new and different ways. With its sing-along formats for different target groups - the big sing-along concert in the Berlin Philharmonic, the Festival of Cultures and the Liederbörse as the sing-along concert for Berlin schoolchildren - the Rundfunkchor Berlin wants to get as many people as possible to sing along.
With the beginning of the 2015/16 season Gijs Leenaars takes over the position of chief conductor and artistic director. Simon Halsey remains associated with the Rundfunkchor Berlin as honorary conductor and guest conductor.
The first "Funk-Stunde Berlin" in October 1923 marked the birth of the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Berlin (RSB). Always aware of its almost 100-year-old tradition, it has stood for particularly unusual and sensational programmes in Berlin concert life since autumn 2017 under the direction of its principal conductor and artistic director Vladimir Jurowski. Karina Canellakis will assume the position of Principal Guest Conductor in the fall of 2019 and from then on will set her own artistic accents with the RSB, while at the same time being "Artist in Focus" this season.
In cooperation with
Radio Choir Berlin
Günter Titsch (Germany)
Project development (INTERKULTUR)
INTERKULTUR Executive Committee
Günter Titsch (Germany)
Qin Wang (China)
Stefan Bohländer (Germany)
Dr Christoph Wirtz (Germany), Secretary General
Dear friends of choral music,
the issue of visas generally takes a long time. Therefore please make sure to apply for your visa as soon as possible. It is in your own interest. In case you apply too late, you risk a rejection of your visa registration!
Please contact the embassy of the host country in your country to get detailed information what restrictions and regulations apply to you!
Please keep also in mind that you might need transit visas, depending on your itinerary to the competition country.
If you do not have a valid passport yet, please apply for this immediately!
Participants of some countries need an invitation letter as well as a stamped list of participants to apply for a visa. INTERKULTUR can issue these documents.
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In addition to a wide range of theatres, museums, concert halls and opera houses, Berlin offers all the fascinating facets of a cosmopolitan city. Interesting tourist highlights, numerous historical and modern sights as well as a huge range of shopping and entertainment opportunities make a stay in Berlin a unique experience, even outside the Choir Festival. Those who stay a little longer in Berlin can also get to know the pretty quiet corners of the pulsating metropolis.