October 16, 2017.
Bel Canto Choir Vilnius took first place at the final of the Lithuanian National Choral Competition, retaining the title of the best volunteer choir in Lithuania for the next four years. An international panel of judges awarded Bel Canto Choir Vilnius 98 points – the highest among all choirs in Lithuania. Bel Canto Choir Vilnius also won the competition’s Grand Prix. 30 Category I choirs took part in the final of Lithuania’s premier national choral competition, which ended on October 15, 2017.
Bel Canto Choir Vilnius’ artistic director Dr Egidijus Kaveckas noted that the choir was dedicated and worked exceptionally hard so the results were not too unexpected.
“My team is the best and most motivated in Lithuania. That became clear to me the moment I was offered the role of artistic director at the beginning of the year. The most important thing is that our singers have a very clear vision and ambition – to keep changing, learning and improving. That’s very rare in the Lithuanian choir scene,” noted Egidijus Kaveckas. “I’d like to say a big thank you to our singers, my choirmasters Milda Zapolskaitė and Raminta Gocentienė and our fantastic vocal coach Liudas Norvaišas. We all played an equal part in this achievement. We will continue learning, getting better, and changing the face of choral music in Lithuania.”
An international panel of judges selected the winners at the final of the Lithuanian National Choral Competition: Lithuanian composer, conductor, and academic Vaclovas Augustinas, Latvian composer Rihards Dubra, Polish composer Pawel Lukaszewski, Lithuanian composer Nijolė Sinkevičiūtė, Lithuanian composer Algirdas Martinaitis, and choir conductor, academic and soloist Dainius Puišys, also from Lithuania.
The Lithuanian National Choral Competition takes place every four years and is jointly organised by the Lithuanian Choral Union and the Lithuanian National Culture Center. Its goal is to asses the artistic level of the Lithuanian choirs and select the best ones in the country. In the 2013 edition of the competition, Bel Canto Choir Vilnius also won the first place (92.2 points).
In May 2017, Bel Canto Choir Vilnius triumphed at the first round of the Lithuania’s major Choral Competition, thus retaining its No. 1 position in the national ranking of the Lithuanian choirs. Bel Canto Choir Vilnius received 97.7 points out of 100, the best result among one hundred eleven choirs in Lithuania.
In the first round of the Competition, Bel Canto Choir Vilnius performed ‘Anoj Pusėj Dunojėlio’ (obligatory piece) by Vaclovas Augustinas, Martin Gore’s ‘Enjoy the Silence’, arranged by Eric Whitacre and Billy Joel’s ‘River of Dreams’, arranged by Vitalijus Neugasimovas.
The second round of the Lithuania’s major Choral Contest is scheduled for October 2017, where only first category choirs will compete.
The Lithuania’s National Choral Competition is being organized every four years by the Lithuanian Choral Union and Lithuanian Folk Culture Center, and is aimed to assess the artistic level of the choirs and to select the best ones in the country.
Artistic Director of the Bel Canto Choir Vilnius is Dr. Egidijus Kaveckas. The second conductor and choirmaster is Milda Zapolskaitė, the choirmaster and concertmaster is Raminta Gocentienė.
Bel Canto Choir Vilnius, Lithuania’s best mixed volunteer choir, gifts its special performance to Lithuanian and other NATO troops stationed at the military base in Rukla. The choir presents its concert on the occasion of Lithuania’s Independence Restoration Day, March 11, and organizes it at the sports and entertainment arena in Jonava City. The concert will be attended by more than 1 000 troops from the NATO enhanced Forward Presence Battalion being formed in Rukla. The concert will be open to Jonava residents too.
“I am proud of our choir’s talented and civic-minded singers. Without any encouragement, they took this initiative upon themselves and decided to congratulate the soldiers of our country and our allies on the occasion of Lithuania’s Independence Day. On this very special and important day, we want to thank the soldiers for their service and for their defense of our right to live in a free and independent Lithuania. We thank the Lithuanian Military and the Jonava Cultural Center for supporting our initiative and for their help in making it happen,” said Dr. Egidijus Kaveckas, Artistic Director of Bel Canto Choir Vilnius.
Bel Canto Choir Vilnius will present NATO troops with the most famous compositions by contemporary Lithuanian choral composers Vytautas Miškinis and Vaclovas Augustinas, works by Eric Whitacre, world’s most famous US contemporary composer, and other works. Bel Canto Choir Vilnius’ civic initiative will be joined by concerts’ lightening equipment company Mano Disco, which will provide stage lighting during the concert, and the choir’s friends from the 3 Kadrai video production company.
The concert of Bel Canto Choir Vilnius will begin at 3PM on March 11 at Jonava sports and entertainment arena.
Bel Canto Choir Vilnius’ Artistic Director and Chief Conductor Dr. Egidijus Kaveckas; Second Conductor and Choirmaster Milda Zapolskaitė; Choirmaster and Concertmaster Raminta Gocentienė.