Chor.com – A Short Review of Germany’s Choir Expo
by Re Heller, Böblingen/GER
Again I took what I could get. Due to time and resource constraints I decided to spend part of Friday and the complete Saturday in Dortmund. I had reviewed the Chor.com calender and marked concerts and workshops beforehand, but used some flexibility when I was there. Which means, as an amateur singer in a Jazz Choir and a Vocal Improvisation enthusiast as of late, I cannot give you a real overview about the event other than what I heard, so please excuse me for a bit of second hand information
Some general facts on chor.com 2013: 4 days, 1600 (trade) visitors, a great organization including about 70 volunteers, an exhibition integrated into the event at the main location, the congress center Westfallenhalle, a program with 150 workshops, 3 intensive or master classes, 30 reading sessions, round tables and lectures, presentations and open singing, 30 concerts, 20 of these alone with the Saturday night event named Nachtklang (Night sound). Can you imagine? And I never had the impression that things were crowded, except the Subway line on Saturday afternoon that some Westfalenhalle visitors and thousands of soccer fans going to the Westfalen-Stadium shared.
So if you haven’t given up reading by now: bravo!!! How nice. You must be singers.
There was plenty of interesting activities for just everyone in the choir scene, conductors, singers, media professionals, as well as the odd amateur. All ages present, from children’s choir to senior hard rock singers, many different styles, classical, contemporary, folk, jazz, pop, you name it. It was a motivating and educative event that I would not want to have missed! With many an opportunity to make connections, meet friends and peers, and all that in a friendly, supportive, professional and fun atmosphere and setting. Lecturers and workshop conductors readily shared their knowledge and gave you insight into their field of expertise to help you move forward in you personal and professional development.
And what were my personal highlights? Even more than I had planned I was able to pursue my Impro and Circle Singing interest in workshops with Roger Treece and members of German A Cappella group SLIXS that were inspiration and fun at the same time. And the spirit of the event and the concerts of all these awesome choirs and ensembles accompanied me on the nightly train ride home, and still accompanies me! So let me end with the words of choir conductor Simon Halsey: Thank you Dortmund Thank you Deutscher Chorverband Thank you chor.com Thank you everybody I am proud to have been part of chor.com.