Singapore, Korean choirs win grand prizes in CCP international choral fest | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

Members of the first prize winner (folk music category) World Vision Korea Children’s Choir pose with a Filipino fan (front, second from left) after the contest.
Various choirs that competed gather in the lobby of the Cultural Center of the Philippines after the last day of competition on Aug. 10. PHOTOS BY RICK ALBERTO

The legacy of National Artist for Music Andrea Veneracion continues.

The Andrea O. Veneracion International Choral Festival, named after the founder of the Philippine Madrigal Singers, opened last Aug. 8. It was the sixth international choral fest to be staged at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) and the first international choral competition in the country. Festival director is Melissa V. Mantaring of the CCP.


The festival marked the 50th anniversary of the Madrigal Singers, which was founded by Veneracion in 1963. She passed away July 9.


During the closing ceremonies on Aug. 10, the winners were declared. Winners in the Chamber Choir category were One Chamber Choir from Singapore, conducted by Lim Ai Hooi (first prize); Paragita Student Choir of Universitas Indonesia, conducted by Agus Yuwono (second prize); and Kammerchor Manila conducted by Anthony Villanueva (third prize).


The obligatory piece performed in the Chamber Choir Category was “Three Kalingga Chants,” written by Nilo Alcala, which was commissioned for the festival.


Winners in the Folk Music Category were World Vision Korea Children’s Choir from Korea, conducted by Hee Churl Kim (first prize); Technological Institute of the Philippines Choral Society, conducted by Jose Emmanuel Aquino (second prize); and University of the Philippines Los Baños Choral Ensemble, conducted by Romel Lomarda (third prize).


Winners in the Vocal Ensemble Category were Aleron conducted by Christopher Arceo (first); Koro Ilustrado conducted by Edmund Alan Piquero Jr. (second); and UP Los Baños Choral Ensemble conducted by Romel Lomarda (third).


Winning groups received $5,000, $3,500, $2,500 (Chamber Choir); $4,000, $2,500, $1,500 (Vocal Ensemble); and $3,000, $2,000, $1,000 (Folk Music).


Members of the first prize winner (folk music category) World Vision Korea Children’s Choir pose with a Filipino fan (front, second from left) after the contest.

Ninteen choirs, both national and international, competed. A guest choir from Indonesia—Svaditra Bandung Chamber Choir—performed during the festival.


The Filipino choirs came from Manila, Quezon City, Makati City; Los Baños, Laguna; Bacolod City, Iloilo City, and Davao City. The foreign choirs were from Taiwan, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia and South Korea.


The judges were Gary Graden of Sweden; Michael Barrett of South Africa; Eric Banks of the United States; Oscar Escalada of Argentina; and Mark Anthony Carpio, the choirmaster of the Philippine Madrigal Singers.


The first international choral festival organized by CCP was held in 1979. Participating were China, Spain, Poland, Hungary, USSR and Brazil.


This was followed by international choral festivals in 1981 and 1983, and again in 1998 in celebration of the Philippine Centennial, with choirs from South Africa, Spain, India, Germany, France and Japan.


The most recent international choral festival was in 2003. All these festivals were noncompetitive.


In 2009, CCP organized the 1st CCP National Choral Competition in celebration of its 40th anniversary.


The second Andrea O. Veneracion International Choral Festival will next be held in 2015, according to choirmaster Carpio.



Trumpet workshop, masterclass


The CCP is inviting trumpet players to attend the Trumpet Workshop to be given by international prize-winning trumpet player Raymond de Leon on Sept. 5-6, 1:30-5:30 p.m., at the CCP Silangan Hall.


The workshop will follow the trumpet master class to be attended by selected trumpet players.


De Leon is a three-time first-prize winner of the National Music Competitions for Young Artists (Namcya). He was a semifinalist in the 1st Calvia International Trumpet Competition in Mallorca, Spain, in 2003.


He won third prize in the International Trumpet Guild Solo Trumpet Competition in New Jersey in 2006, and first prize in the Seattle Philharmonic Don Bushell Concerto Competition in 2011. This led to his debut with the Seattle Philharmonic on March 2012, where he played the Arutiunian Trumpet Concerto.


De Leon has performed and toured in Europe, the US and Asia with international orchestra players, and competed in international music competitions.


De Leon is featured in the second concert of the CCP Special Concert Series on Sept. 4, 7:30 p.m., at Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino.


Call 832-1125 loc. 1604/1605; e-mail the CCP Artist Training Division at



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