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Rīga holds breath awaiting world’s choirs

On July 9 host-city Rīga celebrates the opening of the 2014 World Choir Games, when 460 choral groups from the around the globe will descend upon the current Capital of European Culture and WiFi for a unique two-week festival and contest extravaganza.

As World Choir Games artistic director Romāns Vanags says, “one of our objectives is to show the public the many diverse meanings of the simple verb ‘to sing’.”

The World Choir Games program boasts a wealth of events, from competitions in 29 categories, including academic choral singing, sacred, traditional folk, jazz, pop, spiritual and gospel music; 24 master classes guided by renowned musicians, star-studded opening and closing fanfare concerts; world-famous special guests The Real Group and The King’s Singers; debut works by composer Morten Lauridsen and Ēriks Ešenvalds as well as the progressive Latvian ethno-rock project Elektrofolk; a joint Baltic Boys Choir concert; dozens of friendship performances throughout the capital city’s parks and squares; not to mention gala shows in Sigulda and Jūrmala and the grand parade of participants.

The mission of the world’s largest choir music festival is “to make choir music open and accessible to the widest possible audience… and bring together choirs in friendly competition, regardless of nationality, race and musical style,” says the international event’s press kit. The World Choir Games have taken place every two years since 2000.

Program details are browsable at the event's official website: singriga.lv

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