The Venlona Royal Choir of the Netherlands will be staging an extraordinary concert today at the opening of the 11th edition of the International Opera and Operetta Festival organised in the western city of Timisoara by the Timisoara Romanian National Opera House (ONRT).
The show was initially scheduled to take place in the open, on a stage in the Rose Park, but because of bad weather, all the festival’s Friday and Saturday shows were relocated to the main building of the Opera House.
The Dutch guests will perfume together with voice soloists of ONRT mostly works by Giuseppe Verdi under the baton of conductor Wim Schepers.
According to Venlona Royal Choir member Paul Beurskens, the choir will also stage a concert of modern and classical church songs in various styles and languages on Saturday starting at 20:15hrs at the Dome in the Unirii Square.
The Venlona Choir was established in 1900 at the initiative of members of the St. Martin Church of Venlo, in the Netherlands. Quite soon, they won a prestigious place in the local community, becoming nationally and internationally acclaimed for winning important prizes right in the first three years of existence: 1st prize in the top division and the prize for the best conductor at the International Competition in Arnhem. In 1931, the choir received the Royal Prize in recognition of its merits.
Beurskens also said that in time the Venlona Royal Choir has staged concerts and won more national as well as intentional prizes in Belgium, Germany, France, Italy, Latvia, Poland, the Czech Republic and Switzerland. In 1980, the choir won the highest score at the Baden International Music Contest. It also performed in the closing concert of the Hague Festival and staged an extraordinary recital on the centennial of the Royal Conservatory of Flanders in Anvers, according to Beurskens.
In 2000, the choir celebrated its centennial. Its concerts continued, and in 2001 it gave a concert in the St. Peter Square of Rome at the invitation of Pope John Paul II.
Verdi, Bizet, Janacek, Schubert, Gounod, L. Bernstein, Wagner, Grieg, Tchaikovsky, Gershwin, Donizetti, Bellini, Rossini, De Marzi, Prokofiev, Mussorgsky, Martin, Haydn, Offenbach, Karl Jenkins and Maierhofer are some of the composers whose works feature in the choir’s repertoire.
The tour of the Dutch choir in Romania ends on Sunday with an extraordinary recital at 10:30hrs, local, at the Maria Radna Basilica of Arad County.