21 - 25 October 2020

International Competition

The highlight event of the festival sees eight top-quality international choirs compete to be crowned winner of the prestigious 2019 International Competition.

Coral Brasília, Brazil
Deyvson Miranda

Coral Brásilia, created in 1995, aims to develop a high standard of repertoire and represent Brasilia and Brazil in national and international events, sharing the art and culture of Brazil with other countries.

The choir has participated in festivals, competitions and concerts in Brazil and abroad, including performances in Argentina, Chile, Slovenia, Hungary, Spain, Italy and Russia. Coral Brásilia also participates in social projects including workshops for children in public schools.

In 2017, the choir was awarded the Gold Diploma in Mixed Choirs and Folklore and the Silver Diploma in Sacred Music at the 2nd Kalamata International Choir Festival in Greece.

The choir is currently under the leadership of conductor Deyvson Miranda with vocal preparation by Livia Bergo.

Voices of Hope, England
Simon Davies-Fidler

Voices of Hope is an award-winning chamber choir based in the North East of England. Founded in 2011 by Music Director Simon Davies-Fidler, Voices of Hope is the 2016 National Choir of the Year, 2017 Let the People Sing finalists and has twice been Performing Artist of the Year finalists in the Journal Culture Awards

Since forming for a one-off charity concert in 2011, the choir has gone on to perform at Sage Gateshead, Birmingham Symphony Hall, Cardiff Millennium Centre and Helsinki’s Musiikkitalo, and has made several broadcasts on BBC Radio 3 and on BBC 4.

With a keen sense of local identity, Voices of Hope regularly performs music by local composers, having premiered works by Ian Stephenson, John Kefala-Kerr, Kathryn Tickell and Agustin Fernández. Last year the choir released its second album ‘A New Christmas’ featuring six seasonal pieces by composers from North East England.

A Voices of Hope performance of John Rutter’s Requiem was described by the composer as ‘music-making of the highest order – engaging, inspiring and a joy to the ear’.

New Dublin Voices, Ireland
Bernie Sherlock

International award-winning New Dublin Voices was founded by conductor Bernie Sherlock in 2005. Presenting concert programmes that are fresh, innovative, and exciting, New Dublin Voices has given more than 55 world premieres, and takes special pleasure in exploring the music of living composers. The choir leads the way in performing, premiering, commissioning and disseminating Irish choral music, and in introducing international choral music to Irish audiences.

New Dublin Voices has won prizes at major competitions in France, Hungary, Germany, Finland, Belgium, Spain, England, Slovenia, Latvia and Italy. Most recently the choir won First Prize for mixed choirs at the 2018 Béla Bartók international choral competition in Hungary, and the overall Grand Prix at the 2017 International Baltic Sea Choral Competition in Latvia. 

New Dublin Voices regularly tours to prestigious international festivals at home and abroad. In July 2017 the choir was one of 24 ensembles from around the globe – and the first from Ireland – invited to perform at the triennial World Symposium on Choral Music in Barcelona.

Coro Giovanile Regionale del Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy
Petra Grassi

The FVG Regional Youth Choir was founded by USCI Friuli Venezia Giulia (the regional choral association of Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy) in 2016.

At present, the FVG Regional Youth Choir has 44 young singers and features classical, early and contemporary music repertoire. Programmes also include pieces that have been commissioned to composers from FVG region, chosen for their high artistic value.

In 2017 the choir had their debut in San Vito al Tagliamento at the General Assembly of the regional choral association and has performed in many other important events, including the national Officina Corale del Futuro project in Montecatini Terme, Tuscany, and in the Basilica of Santa Maria Novella in Florence.

Additionally, in 2018, the choir gave notable concerts in the prestigious MITO SettembreMusica festival in Milan and Turin and in Salzburg, Austria.

The FVG Regional Youth Choir is conducted by Petra Grassi, a young musician who has achieved national and international awards.

St. Zlata Meglenska Female Chamber Choir, North Macedonia
Letka Dimovska Polizova

The Women’s Chamber Choir “St. Zlata Meglenska” is one of the most successful choirs in the Republic of Macedonia and was independently established in 1996 by its founder, Artistic Director and Conductor, Letka Dimovska Polizova.

The Choir is composed of 22 singers, who are academics and students from across all public universities in Skopje. Although volunteers, the young women contribute to the reputation of the Macedonian culture and popularity of the choral singing tradition, developing a varied repertoire of music.

Supported by the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry of Foreign affairs, as well as several embassies of the Republic of Macedonia abroad, the choir has accomplished excellent international presentation of Macedonian choral music in performances across Europe, America and Australia.

In 2016 the choir was awarded three gold medals and the title of World Champions in the category of Women’s Chamber Choir at the World Choir Games in Sochi, Russia.

Solheimkoret, Norway
Inger-Pernille Stramrud

Solheimkoret is a Norwegian mixed choir of 60 singers from the Ringsaker Municipality, 120 km north of Oslo, and was established in 1968.

In the last 10 years, Solheimkoret has participated in competitions in Vienna (Interkultur) and Venice (Venezia in Musica), achieving gold diplomas in both. They have also participated in the Nordic-Baltic festival and many competitions in Norway. The choir enjoys representing a versatile repertoire of sacred and secular music in different languages and continuously strives to evolve and reach new musical goals.

Solheimkoret is under the direction of conductor Inger-Pernille Stramrud. Inger-Pernille is educated in Music and Conducting at Hamar School for Teachers and Toneheim (private academy). She conducts two additional choirs and currently holds the post of Choir Supervisor in the Norwegian Choir Association.

Coro Feminino do Vale do Sousa, Portugal
Silvio Cortez

The Coro Feminino of the Conservatório do Vale do Sousa (the Female Choir CVS) in Portugal, was founded in 2007 and consists of 25 members from within the cultural conservatory.

The choir has participated in a number of festivals and competitions including International Choir Festivals in Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, and Switzerland, winning many 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards in various categories.

The choir has been conducted since its establishment by Sílvio Cortez.

Côrdydd, Wales
Huw Foulkes

Côrdydd has established itself as one of Wales’ most successful and prominent choirs.

It has won at the National Eisteddfod 12 times, and claimed the main title of ‘Choir of the Festival’ on 6 occasions. Côrdydd won the Mixed Choir category in the ‘Côr Cymru’ competition in 2009 and 2017 and claimed the top prize and Karl Jenkins trophy at the Wales International Choral Festival in April 2019.

Over the years, the choir has performed a varied repertoire on numerous stages in Wales and beyond, and has travelled to Barbados and Hong Kong, performed in Carnegie Hall in New York, and as part of the Ontario Welsh Festival in Canada. Côrdydd has also been fortunate to work with some of the world’s most famous choral composers, including Eric Whitacre, Paul Mealor and Morten Lauridsen.

  • arts council
  • Derry City and Strabane District Council
  • Inner City Trust
  • Arts & Business
  • Tourism NI
  • City Hotel
  • Caldwell & Robinson
  • Airporter
  • Bishop’s Gate Hotel
  • Allstate
  • FinTru
  • Ulster University
  • Sing Ireland
  • Allegri
  • Contemporary Music Centre
  • CFN