You don’t know much about Eurovision Choir? Or it’s the first time you’re hearing about it? Then you must have a lot of questions! We at Aussievision have done a run through on what this competition is about.
So, what exactly is Eurovision Choir?
Eurovision Choir formerly known as Eurovision Choir of the Year is a biennial choral competition run by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) and The Interkultur Foundation distributed by Eurovision. The event is combined with the Opening Ceremony of the European Choir Games. It is open to broadcasters that are members of the EBU. It brings together Europe’s best amateur choir vocal groups and together they celebrate their different traditions, languages and singing. The inaugural competition took place on July 22 2017 in Riga, Latvia where Slovenian girls’ choir Carmen Manet took the trophy with their performances of three songs “Ta na Solbici”, “Adrca” and “Aj, zelena je vas gora”.
So when is the next competition?
The second edition of Eurovision Choir takes place on August 3rd 2019 at the Partille Arena, in Gothenburg, Sweden. There will be ten participating countries with Norway, Scotland, Sweden and Switzerland making their debut. It will be hosted by British presenter Petroc Trelawy, who is one of the best known voices on BBC Radio 3 and presents the daily Breakfast programme, he previously hosted Eurovision Young Musicians, and Swedish presenter Ella Petersson, who is head of the music department at SVT and has hosted many culture programmes at SVT.
Is the format just like the Eurovision Song Contest?
Well not exactly. Each choir group representing their country performs in the first round in an unaccompanied ensemble of no more than four minutes in any genre, which must contain national or regional influence from the participating country. Then three choirs are invited to perform in the second round where they perform a three minute set and then a winner is chosen. They are judged by a jury who decide the winner. The winning group claims the title of “Eurovision Choir 2019” and takes home a specially designed trophy.
Is the jury set up similar to the Eurovision Song Contest?
No, there are three jury members that make up a professional jury. They include Katarina Henryson, from Sweden, who herself is a singer and composer and a founding member of the a cappella ensemble, The Real Group, John Rutter from the UK, who is a composer and conductor, and a previous judge from the 2017 competition and Deke Sharon, from the USA, who is a producer and arranger.
Who will be competing?
There are ten participating countries in this years competition. Let's run through the country, choir group names, conductors and confirmed languages, in order of where they will perform on the night:
Sweden - Zero8 - Conductor: Rasmus Krigström
Belgium - Almakalia - Conductor: Nicolas Dorian
Latvia - Babite Municipality Mixed Choir MASKA - Conductor: Jãnis Ozols - Latvian
Germany - BonnVoice - Conductor: Tono Wissing
Norway - Volve Vokal - Conductor: Gro Espedal
Denmark - Vocal Line - Conductor: Jens Johansen
Scotland - Alba - Conductor: - Scottish Gaelic
Slovenia - Jazzva - Conductor/Artistic director: Jasna Žitnik - Slovene
Switzerland - Cake O’Phonie - Conductor: Antonie Krattinger - French, Italian, German, Romansh and Patois
Wales - Ysgol Gerdd Ceredigion - Conductor: Islwyn Evans
Will there be any special guests or acts?
Yes! It’s going to be very Swedish. The show will include mass choir performances from all the competing countries, performing renditions of ABBA’s “Mamma Mia”, “Dancing Queen” and Avicii’s “Without You”. Previous winners Carmen Manet will also perform, including other acts.
Where can I watch it?
Each country will show case the show on their participating broadcasters’ channels. Australians (and those from country's not competing) can watch through SVT’s worldwide access coverage on August 4th 2019 at 4.30am AEST by visiting https://www.svtplay.se/