|Glen Ellyn Children's Chorus in China, Celebrating 40 Years of Excellence|
Chinese Premiere of The Nightingale at Beijing's Forbidden City Concert Hall
In celebration of their 40th anniversary, Glen Ellyn Children's Chorus (GECC) embarked on a fantastic tour of China where they performed the Chinese premiere of The Nightingale by Imant Raminsh. Their fifteen-day adventure began in Hong Kong where this world-class organization was chosen to perform three concerts at the World Children's Choir Festival, which involved more than 20 choirs from all over the world. The choristers also had the opportunity to collaborate with a local school where they shared their music and culture with delighted students.
After a performance and a breathtaking Li River Cruise in Guilin and a concert, GECC traveled to X'ian where they performed a concert at the May 4th Concert Hall and marveled at the Tomb of the Emperor Qin Shi Huang with its extraordinary life-sized Terra Cotta warriors and horses guarding the tomb.
GECC's tour ended in Beijing, where they performed two concerts, one of them the opening concert at the 11th annual Gateway to Music Festival at the Forbidden City Concert Hall. Their grand finale was a fully costumed and staged performance of The Nightingale by Imant Raminsh. This original choral opera, conducted by Emily Ellsworth, Artistic Director of the GECC, and commissioned by the GECC, the Children's Chorus of Washington and the Portland Symphonic Girl's choir, tells Hans Christian Andersen's story of a Chinese Emperor and the lesson learned from a nightingale about the value of the natural over the artificial. A day trip to the Great Wall provided a suitably climactic conclusion to the tour.
|"The historical sites of China provided some of the richest cultural experiences we have ever had life-changing in so many ways. These sites are haunting in their ancientness, their beauty, and their ability to ignite the imagination of young and old alike. Mesmerizing! And again our guides were terrific."|
"This was a very touching, thrilling experience to perform this gorgeous piece [Chinese premier of The Nightingale by Imant Raminsh] so near and dear to our hearts in the context of this magnificent place a stone's throw from the historic home of so many of the emperors of China. The singers and I will never forget it. Thank you, thank you."
[EMILY ELLSWORTH, ARTISTIC DIRECTOR, GLEN ELLYN CHILDREN'S CHORUS]
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