Riding the [Sound] Waves of the 2012 World Choir Games
On Saturday, September 22 at 7:30 pm St. Unitarian Universalist Church Music Series will present a concert featuring three World Choir participants in a World Choir Games Concert Extravaganza! The concert will feature the Greater Cincinnati Indian Community Choir, conducted by Kanniks Kanneswaran, the Sakura Ladies Chorus, conducted by Sayuri Jones and the Kolping Saengerchor, conducted by Carolann Slouffman.
“Singing together brings nations together” is the mission of the World Choir Games and singing together at St. John’s brings communities together. Join these choirs for a night of entertaining and eclectic music against the backdrop of the beautiful St. John’s Sanctuary.
The mission of the Sakura Ladies Chorus is to promote multiculturalism through Japanese music in Greater Cincinnati communities. The Sakura Ladies Chorus was founded in 1998 and has been performing at local cultural events such as the Art Sampler, Asian Culture Fest at the museum center at the Union Terminal, local colleges and schools, churches, and several functions organized by the Japan America Society of Greater Cincinnati. The chorus participated in Open Competition in the 2012 World Choir Games, receiving a silver medal. Our repertoire includes traditional to contemporary Japanese songs and some numbers from countries other than Japan in translation or original languages.
The Sakura Ladies Chorus is led by the director/conductor, Sayuri Jones, and the co-director, Emi Akiba. Both are local professional music instructors. The majority of the members are native Japanese and some are American. Most of the members are amateur volunteers who have a passion for singing and keeping their ties to their Japanese roots.
The Kolping Sangerchor is a group of singers dedicated to the preservation of German song. We are a self-sustaining local German folk choir (Sängerchor) that is a subgroup of the much larger Catholic Kolping Society of Cincinnati. The Sängerchor has around 75 active members. The Kolping Society of Cincinnati is part of an even larger national and international organization headquartered in Cologne, Germany founded by Blessed Adolf Kolping in the 1860's.
The Sängerchor is a member of the Nord-Amerikanische Saengerbund (North-American Singers Association or NASB), a national organization of over 40 German choirs that was founded in Cincinnati in 1849. We are also members of the Southern-Ohio, Kentucky, and Indiana District of the NASB, the Illinois Bezirk, and the Deutsche-Saengerbund of Germany.
The Kolping Sängerchor was formed in June 1989 by Carolann and Jim Slouffman and a group of twenty dedicated singers from the Cincinnati Catholic Kolping Society. They united in a common bond for their love of German music while preserving the heritage of the singing societies in the Cincinnati area. Some of the early performances by this "elite and chosen" group (singing in two-part harmony) included appearances at the Baker's Ball, the Polkafest, the lighting of the city of Cincinnati's Christmas tree at Fountain Square and a gala for our sister city of Munich.
Presently, the 75-voice choir represents all age groups with many members being native-speaking German-Americans. Performances have ranged from German Day, organized by the German American Citizens League (GACL) of Greater Cincinnati and Oktoberfest celebrations to the Governor's Pavilion at the Ohio State Fair. The choir also performs at retirement centers, nursing homes, other functions by request, as well as our own Schlachtfest (pig roast), Spring and Christmas concerts.
The mission of the Kolping Sängerchor is to promote the cultivation, furtherance and maintenance of German music and songs, German customs and the German language. The mission is to be carried out as a supportive, family-type environment that strives to further develop the individual and the group at the same time.
The Greater Cincinnati Indian Community Choir founded and led by visionary composer Kanniks Kannikeswaran (Mason OH) won two silver medals in the prestigious Champions category in the just concluded World Choir Games.
Conductor Kanniks Kannikeswaran who leads the Greater Cincinnati Indian community choir to victory is hailed as a pioneer of the Indian American choral movement. He first started creating raga based choral music in 1994 and has gone on to expand his repertoire. His first choral production ‘Basant – A musical celebration of Spring’ and his 1996 collaboration ‘The Blue Jewel’ are still remembered in Cincinnati. Of course, Kanniks is remembered most for his magnum opus ‘Shanti – A Journey of Peace’ – the first ever oratorio in Sanskrit in Indian ragas cloaked in choral and orchestral harmony that has been performed in three different cities.
The Greater Cincinnati Indian community choir that Kanniks founded in Cincinnati is a diverse mix of professionals and students speaking over 8 languages spanning a range of professions. Kanniks has also founded similar choral work in Houton, Allentown, Tampa, Fort Lauderdale, Minneapolis and more.
Kanniks is also known for his award winning research on the Indo-Colonial music of Muthusvami Dikshitar and for his collaboration with the Gundecha Brothers. He presents his work regularly during the Music Season in Chennai. He also teaches Indian Music Theory and History at the University of Cincinnati in the capacity of an Adjunct Faculty. He is the recipient of the prestigious McKnight Fellowship and the Ohio Heritage Fellowship.