The Vaasa Choir Festival celebrates its 30th anniversary in 2024. To mark the anniversary, the YL Male Voice Choir will return to the Choir Festival programme. Other main performers include the Estonian National Male Choir Eesti Rahvusmeeskoor, the classical choir Tampere Cappella, and the internationally acclaimed vocal ensemble Flok and choir Kipinät, both awarded in the Tampere Sävel ensemble singing competition.
The YL Male Voice Choir is currently celebrating its 140th anniversary. The popular male choir’s repertoire moves smoothly from tango through Sibelius to opera, and they are particularly famous as ambassadors for the music of Jean Sibelius. Accordingly, the choir is known in Finland as an open-minded and exceptionally versatile performer. In Vaasa, YL Male Voice Choir will perform a rare concert together with the Estonian National Male Choir Eesti Rahvusmeeskoor. The choir is conducted by Pasi Hyökki.
The YL Male Voice Choir will perform at the Vaasa Choir Festival’s gala concert together with the Vaasa City Orchestra and our local choirs the Canticum Maris Canticum Chamber Choir and the Vaasa Opera Choir. The concert will feature the best of the choirs’ and orchestras’ joint classics from the national romantic, domestic, and foreign operatic repertoire, as well as more recent and popular music. The choir will be conducted by Kristian Heberg, Artistic Director of the Vaasa Choir Festival.
Strong professional choirs
The male choir Eesti Rahvusmeeskoor is one of the best-known music ensembles in its country. Founded in 1944, the professional choir’s repertoire ranges from the Renaissance to the present, including works by many Estonian composers. The choir has also premiered works by well-known composers such as Gavin Bryars, Giovanni Bonato, Henrik Ødegaard, and Dmitri Shostakovich. The Estonian National Male Choir is conducted by Artistic Director Mikk Üleoja.
Tampere Cappella is a chamber choir made up of professional musicians who also know how to surprise their audiences with their choice of songs. The performance at the Vaasa Choir Festival is a prize-winning concert. Leiu Tõnissaar, who will conduct the concert, won the Second Finnish Choirmaster Competition in November 2023, which takes place every five years. The choir’s artistic director is Markus Yli-Jokipii.
Flok, who write their own music, is reforming a cappella in Finland. They also makes new and fresh arrangements of well-known pop songs. The vocal ensemble, made up of six professional musicians, was founded in 2022 and this year won first place in the Tampereen Sävel vocal ensemble competition for amplified ensembles and the public vote.
Kipinät, who focus on rhythm music, performs pop and jazz and does choral improvisation. The choir is led by its founder, pop/jazz song teacher and award-winning choir director Kaisa Halmemies. Kipinät has been awarded the highest accolade and the Choir Director Award at the Tampereen Sävel International Chorus Review in 2019.
Registration for choirs is open from 1 December 2023 to 31 January 2024 on the website: vaasa.fi/en/vaasa-choir-festival.