Bel Canto Choir Vilnius Achieves Unprecedented Success: Receives Top Score and First Place for Third Consecutive Term

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius has once again secured the title of Lithuania’s highest-ranked choir. The choir emerged as the victor in Lithuania’s premier choral competition, solidifying its position as the leading choir in the nation. A panel of judges awarded Bel Canto Choir Vilnius 96.3 points, the highest among all Lithuania choirs and first place. Girls choir “Virgo” (94 points) and Klaipėda mixed choir “Cantare” (92 points) also entered the top three list of choirs with the highest rating. Meanwhile, the Grand Prix of the competition was awarded to the winners of the fourth place – the women’s choir “Viva” (91.6 points).

This remarkable achievement marks the third consecutive triumph for the choir, following their previous victories in 2013 and 2017. Organized by the Lithuanian National Center for Culture, this prestigious competition takes place every four years, serving as a platform to assess the artistic prowess of choirs and to announce the best in Lithuania.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius 2023. Photo by Gabrielius Jauniškis.

Milda Švelnienė, artistic director and conductor of Bel Canto Choir Vilnius, attributes the choir’s success to its members’ exceptional qualities and unwavering dedication.

Švelnienė states, “At the core of our choir’s remarkable achievements lies the harmonious blend of friendship, talent, and unyielding motivation to surpass our previous achievements. We have always been an incredibly ambitious and open-minded community, so I never doubted my team’s success for a minute. We took our performance to a higher artistic level by working with each chorister, discussing, and thoroughly analyzing rehearsals and our progress. I extend my gratitude to the exceptional artistic team, including choirmasters Raminta Gocentiene and Stasė Žaltauskaitė-Malūnavičienė, as well as vocal coaches Eimantas Bešėnas and Eglė Stundžiaitė, whose contributions have played a pivotal role in our victory. I am extremely grateful and happy to be able to work, make music, and continuously improve with this unique choir. Our choir.”

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius 2023. Photo by Gabrielius Jauniškis.

The final round of the Lithuanian Adult Choir Competition was judged by an international jury consisting of composer and conductor Vaclovas Augustinas (Lithuania), conductor Jan Schumacher (Germany), conductor Anna Moniuszko (Poland), composer Zita Bružaitė (Lithuania), and conductor Modestas Barkauskas (Lithuania). The competition featured twenty first-category choirs vying for the top position.

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius at Lithuania’s Choral Competition 2023

Bel Canto Choir Vilnius at the finals of Lithuania’s major choral competition 2023. Photos by Mantas Gudzinevičius and Gabrielius Jauniškis.

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