[Source: Interkultur] Three regional meetings of the World Choir Council took place on August 25 and 26, 2021, where its members came together online to discuss current topics from the international choral scene.
The Regional Meetings were organized as a hybrid event for the first time. More than 100 participants from all over the world in total attended the meetings, including members of the World Choir Council and invited guests. The three conferences happened online with several additional events taking place at the same time in the City of Chengdu, China.
Hoping that this pilot project will lead to many other editions in the future, Mr. Günter Titsch, President of INTERKULTUR & World Choir Council said:
“The ’International Music Capital’ Chengdu played an elementary role, as a large part of the World Choir Council events took place live there. Participants from all over the world were digitally connected to the choral music workshops, master classes and a special symposium. The conference brought us a big step closer to our common goal of seeing choirs live on the stages of the world again. Special thanks to the City of Chengdu and the Chengdu Musical Fun Management Committee for the opportunity and to the China Chorus Association as well as "Chorus China" of Chinese Musicians Association for the opportunity”,
The focus of the regional meetings in August 2021 was mainly on mutual exchange and discussion rounds to hear the manifold voices and opinions of all World Choir Council Members. New ideas were born together and the participants learned from the broad expertise represented in the World Choir Council.
The topics of the three regional meetings varied for the different regions with the meeting for Asia-Pacific, Middle East and China focusing mainly on the role of choral music in boys’ education and on problems and challenges especially composers and arrangers are facing during the pandemic.
In the regional meetings with council members from North, Central and South America questions of Environmental Sustainability were discussed and the participants tried to find solutions on how to use their voices for a positive change. Also, they tried to find answers to the question on how children and youth choirs can be encouraged to sing again.
The last of the three regional meetings took place on August 26 with members from Europe and Africa. They addressed one of the biggest challenges of our times, namely to affect positive change in communities or countries where different ideologies are at odds within the population, and exchanged ideas around the use of choirs and choral singing as a vehicle to reach this goal. Further they discussed the different learnings from the Covid pandemic: What lessons can be learnt from the past 1.5 years and which rehearsal methods will live on?
All members of the World Choir Council who participated in the meeting were happy about the possibility of exchange with other choir experts, especially with regard to cultural differences, different measures and approaches in relation to the pandemic and the work with choir singers.
First Vice President of INTERKULTUR & World Choir Council, Ms Qin Wang was pleased about the wonderful opportunity to come together with the World Choir Council live and virtually through this pilot project:
“In the pandemic, our goal is to unite together, support each other and to help and motivate our choirs to return to the stage as soon as possible. Our hybrid event was a great start to reach this goal and I'm sure we will continue on this path in our future global and regional projects."
INTERKULTUR & World Choir Council hopes to continue the exchange in the future and to use the results to tailor future projects even better to the needs of the choral scene. For this purpose there will be an additional survey.
The next General Conference of the World Choir Council which traditionally gathers all council members at one place, is already being planned to take place on November 3, 2021 in Flanders, Belgium during the 11th World Choir Games.