Latvia Wins Two Champion Titles at World Choir Games

Latvia Wins Two Champion Titles at World Choir Games
Kaspars Garda, Riga 2014
During the second awards ceremony of the World Choir Games in Riga on Sunday, the 13th of July, two Latvian choirs won the Champion’s title – the Riga Technical University men’s choir “Gaudeamus”, conducted by Ivars Cinkuss, and Emilis Melngailis Liepāja Music High School Girls’ Choir, conducted by Andris Kontauts.

The choir “Gaudeamus” won the Champion’s title in the Male Choirs category, whereas the Emilis Melngailis Liepāja Music High School Girls’ Choir triumphed in the Youth Choirs of Equal Voices category.

The choirs were also presented the Champion’s statuettes designed by artist Olga Šilova.

As reported, the Champions Competition features choirs that have participated in, and won, international competitions.

After the World Choir Games’ second awards ceremony, where winners in seven more categories were announced, Latvia is currently in the lead in terms of the number of medals.

In total, Latvian choirs have won 33 various medals, followed by U.S. choirs with 24 medals and Indonesia in third place with seventeen medals.

In the Champions Competition, “Aarhus Pigekor” from Denmark won the Champion’s title in the female choir category, with two Latvian choirs taking gold medals – “Balta” (conductor Māra Marnauza) and “Ausma” (conductor Jānis Zirnis).

Also, two Latvian choirs won silver in the same category – “Venda” (conductors Anitra Niedre and Rudīte Tālberga) and “Aija” (conductor Gunta Vite).

In the Children’s Choirs category, “Shanghai Huangpu Youngsters Activity Centre Spring Children's Choir”, of China, was victorious, while “Stellenbosch University Choir” was honoured as the best choir in the Spiritual category.

“Kearnsey College Choir”, South Africa, emerged as the winner in the “Scenic Pop / Show Choirs” category, whereas Latvian choirs “Zaļo pakalnu koris” (conductor Normunds Zušs) and “Rīgas zelta koris” (conductor Jānis Ķirsis), that both were active participants in the “Koru kari” (“Choir Battles”) TV show in Latvia, took gold and silver.

Besides the Champion in the “Youth Choirs of Equal Voices” category – the Emilis Melngailis Liepāja Music High School Girls’ Choir, gold medals were also awarded to the girls’ choir “Spīgo” (conductor Līga Celma-Kursīte) and Ernests Vīgners Kuldīga Music School girls’ choir “Cantus” (conductor Maruta Rozīte).

In the “Male Choir” category, where the Riga Technical University men’s choir “Gaudeamus” was crowned the Champion, Latvian men’s choirs “Ķekava” (conductor Arvīds Platpers) and “Tēvzeme” (conductor Tālivaldis Gulbis) won silver medals.

In the Mixed Choirs category, South Africa’s “Stellenbosch University Choir” won already the third award at the World Choir Games. The choir has also set a new World Choir Games record by scoring 99.00 points – the highest score ever!

In this same category, Latvian choirs won quite a few medals: youth choir “Maska” (conductor Jānis Ozols), Emīls Dārziņš Mixed Choir (conductor Artūrs Ancāns), Sigulda mixed choir “Atvars” (conductor Jānis Baltiņš) won gold medals, and the University of Latvia Physics and Mathematics School mixed choir “Aura” (conductor Edgars Vītols), mixed choir “Laiks” (conductor Ilze Balode) and Liepāja mixed choir “Intis” (conductor Ilze Valce) won silver.

Latvian choirs were also spectacular in Open Competition, taking a total of six Golden and four Silver Diplomas.

For a full list of scores and winners, see this website.

As reported, the World Choir Games’ first Awards Ceremony was held on Saturday, the 12th of July, honouring choirs in seven Champions Competition categories and eight Open Competition categories. During the first ceremony, Latvian choirs earned three gold and ten silver medals in the Champions Competition, as well as five Golden and five Silver Diplomas in the Open Competition.

The World Choir Games in Riga will run until the 19th of July. Every day choirs perform concerts in various Riga concert halls, and meet for the Friendship Concerts at four open-air stages at the Esplanade, Vērmanes Park, “Origo Summer Stage” and in the Botanical Garden of the University of Latvia.

The full programme of the World Choir Games is available at www.singriga.lv.

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