Vi­enna Boys Choir to ring in hol­i­day sea­son with Christ­mas con­cert at Mis­eri­cor­dia Univer­sity

The Republican Herald - This Weekend - - News - BY KRIS­TEN GAY­DOS STAFF WRITER kgay­dos@cit­i­zensvoice.com

The Vi­enna Boys Choir will bring their “Christ­mas in Vi­enna” pro­gram to Mis­eri­cor­dia Univer­sity in De­cem­ber.

The choir will per­for­mat 7:30 p.m. Dec. 3 in the Lem­mond Theater at the Dal­las, Pa., univer­sity cam­pus. The con­cert will in­clude a va­ri­ety of sa­cred and sec­u­lar Christ­mas songs and hol­i­day fa­vorites, in­clud­ing a mix­ture of choral and solo pieces rep­re­sent­ing coun­tries around the­world.

“In the first part of the con­cert, we’ll sing clas­si­cal and sec­u­lar mu­sic, from Europe. For ex­am­ple, ‘Ave Maria’ by Schu­bert,” said Bomi Kim, con­duc­tor for the Vi­enna Boys Choir. “And of course Bach and Han­del ... and the sec­ond part of the con­cert, we sing Christ­mas songs from Ger­many, from Aus­tria and from the United States.”

The 520-year-old Vi­enna Boys Choir is one of the three im­pe­rial Aus­trian mu­si­cal groups along with the Vi­enna Phil­har­monic Orchestra and the Vi­enna State Opera. Kim con­ducts the Vi­enna Boys Choir’s Mozart choir, one of the four equal sub-groups or tour­ing choirs.

“We have a Schu­bert choir, a Haydn choir and a Bruck­ner choir (aswell), named for the fa­mous Aus­trian com­posers,” Kim said. “Now, I have 23 boys inmy choir. And all to­gether, we have about 100 boys. We are nowin the U.S., and the Haydn choir is in Hong Kong, and the two other choirs are now in Vi­enna preparing for Christ­mas con­certs, and op­eras for chil­dren, and they also sing Mass. We have lots to do.”

Work­ing with the boys can be fun and tough as there’s a lot go­ing on, Kim said. They’re like a big fam­ily, spend­ing all day to­gether on their trips, and they travel with two “won­der­ful” chap­er­ones, Kim said.

“They help us very much,” she said. “Butwe have a lot of fun.”

The Vi­enna Boys Choir was founded in the late 1400s by Em­peror Max­i­m­il­ian I as the Vi­enna Chapel Im­pe­rial. The orig­i­nal choir was com­prised of boys from dif­fer­ent parts of the Holy Ro­man Em­pire who sang for im­pe­rial court, at Mass, con­certs and on state oc­ca­sions.

More than 500 years later, the tra­di­tion lives on with 100 cho­ris­ters, ages 10 to 14, from 30 dif­fer­ent na­tions di­vided into four tour­ing groups who give more than 300 per­for­mances a year through­out Europe, Asia, Aus­tralia and the Amer­i­cas.

Kim stud­ied at the Univer­sity of Mu­sic and Per­form­ing Arts in Vi­enna and earned her mas­ter’s de­gree in choir con­duct­ing, vo­cal mu­sic and Gre­go­rian chants. She was ap­pointed con­duc­tor in 2012.

“My pro­fes­sor for con­duct­ing, he rec­om­mended me for this po­si­tion,” she said. “I like play­ing the pi­ano, I like singing, I like con­duct­ing— all parts of the con­cert.”

Vis­it­ing dif­fer­ent coun­tries is also a perk of the po­si­tion, she said.

“We’ve been to Ja­pan, to China, in Ger­many, and all around the­world,” she said. “It’s very ex­cit­ing.”

LU­CAS BECK/SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

The Vi­enna Boys Choir will per­form Dec. 3 at Mis­eri­cor­dia Univer­sity.

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