The First Experience of the World Choir Games was Wonderful!

Independence Day of 2012 was unforgettable for many singers in the world. Despite the record high temperature that day in Cincinnati, the opening ceremony of the 7th World Choir Games attracted thousands of music lovers from all over the world. Days before the 2012 Olympic Games geared up, a wave of fabulous choir music activities was activated that night in Cincinnati. The so-called “Olympics of Choral Music” toned Cincinnati as an “Olympic City” in July.
From July 4 to 14, 2012, over 15,000 singers participated in the 23 categories of competitions, each of which consisting of two levels: Open Competition and Champions Competition. A record of 362 participating choirs from 48 countries and regions participated in the competitions and more than 6000 people served as volunteers. The City of Cincinnati, known as “the City of Song,” had provided outstanding organizing proficiency and strong local support.  And the local people are very knowledgeable with choir music.
As one of 150 U. S. choirs and one of the three choirs representing Chinese Americans, New Jersey Huaxia Chinese Chorus (HXC) made its first appearance at WCG. It was a wonderful and unforgettable experience for all the participating members of HXC!
During the Games, HXC performed three well-known Chinese songs in the Folklore Open Competition. These pieces represent contemporary Chinese folk songs popular through past decades. The three carefully selected pieces are: “Nostalgia” by Sicong Ma, “Pick Reed Flower”, and “Jasmine” both by Bai Xiao. Nostalgia is a patriotic work by Sicong Ma, composed as a violin piece, on the eve of World War II, when Manchuria had been occupied by the Japanese troops and many people had fled to the inner land of China.  It is the first composition where violin music is blended with traditional Chinese musical elements.  HXC members presented this song with great passion, which touched the audience. The second song, “Pick a Reed Flower”, is a folk song popular South of Yangzi River.  People sing it when working in the rice fields.  HXC presented it in the Suzhou dialect of China, where the song originated. Chinese chopsticks were used to mark the beats. The performance received a big applause from the audience. Members from a Chinese choir in the audience were impressed by HXC’s performance which reflected the theme of the song expressively. HXC finished the competition by singing the famous folk song “Jasmine”. Over all, HXC’s performance was very well received.
HXC’s year-long preparation and hard work for this competition paid off when it was awarded a silver diploma in the category. Every member knows that this achievement would not have been realized without the beloved life-long Conductor, Professor Guojun Wu. Well-known for his achievement in conducting Chinese choral songs in China and in the Chinese community of the greater New York area, Conductor Wu has 50 years of choir conducting experience and great comprehension and love of traditional Chinese music. Under the direction of Conductor Wu through the last 11 years, HXC has improved dramatically in all aspects of choral music. HXC greatly appreciates Conductor Wu’s devotion to choral music, to promoting Chinese culture and music, and to the growth of HXC.
During the Seventh World Choir Games, HXC singers enjoyed hearing and observing many high quality choir performances from all over the world and participated in choir music workshops and seminars offered by the Games. HXC also benefited greatly from the choir clinic given by the renowned Chinese choir conductor, Professor Lingfen Wu. For all HXC participants, the journey to the World Choir Games was so wonderful and unforgettable!
Huaxia Chinese Chorus, established in 1996, is a non-profit organization for people who enjoy singing and music. Active in the Greater New York area and based at Princeton, New Jersey, it aims at enriching the life of the Chinese community and introducing great Chinese songs and music to the American public. Over the years, HXC has organized and participated in many concerts and cultural and musical events in the greater New York area. The chorus has continually worked toward high quality performance through vocal training by professional musicians.  Before the award from the 2012 World Choir Games, it received a silver medal at the 4th World Chinese Chorus Competition in Beijing in August 2010. HXC thanks all musicians who helped the group reach its level today.
For more information about HXC, please visit its web site, http://www.hxchorus.org/ .