Vienna Boys Choir$25 – $49
The Vienna Boys Choir, renowned as one of the finest vocal ensembles in the world for over five centuries, is a frequent visitor to North America, performing throughout the country in everything from houses of worship to great concert venues like New York’s Carnegie Hall and Chicago’s Symphony Hall. The enormously popular chorus is actually comprised of four separate ensembles of boys between the ages of 10 and 14, totaling 100 choristers at the Vienna Boys Choir school at any given time. The four choirs are of equal standing, and the group’s tours, concerts in Vienna and audio and video recording projects are shared among them. Each choir has a choirmaster and two tutors who travel with the boys. Approximately eleven weeks of the school year are devoted to touring, and each choir member sings about 80 concerts a year. Many of the boys have siblings, fathers, uncles and even grandfathers who have also been members of the choir.
The Vienna Boys Choir can trace its history as far back as the 13th century but it was formally established at Vienna’s Imperial Chapel in 1498 by Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I. The many incarnations of the group have been performing continuously ever since. The modern Vienna Boys Choir represents quite a departure from the composition of the original medieval choir of six boys. Today’s Vienna Boys Choir is comprised of talented young singers from all over the world who are admitted by audition. The choir visiting the U.S. this winter and spring includes boys hailing from Austria, Cambodia, China, France, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Japan, Korea, New Zealand and the Philippines.
Conductor for the Choir, Jimmy Chiang
Born in Hong Kong, Jimmy Chiang is a conductor and pianist who started his musical career at the age of 13 with his first public appearance as a concert pianist. Hailing from a musical family, Chiang began piano lessons when he was four and went on to study cello and composition. He received the Fellows Diploma from the Trinity College of Music in London at the age of 16, graduated with a Bachelor of Music from Baylor University in the U.S., and finished his education with “Magister Artium”at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna. Chiang’s conducting career began with winning the renowned Lovro von Matacicinternational competition for Young Conductors in Zagreb in 2007. He is a versatile and well-rounded musician, equally at home in an orchestra pit or on the concert stage, known for interpreting a broad range of repertoire, be it opera, symphony, choral, solo piano or chamber music.
Jimmy Chiang has served as principal conductor of the Hong Kong Pan Asia Symphony since 2008, worked as assistant music director of Wagner’s Ring cycle at Theater Lübeck, and as Kapellmeister at Theater Freiburg, where he led numerous productions. Other conducting highlights include guest conducting at Komische Oper Berlin, the Orquesta Sinfonica de Castilla y Leon, the Hong Kong Philharmonic, and appearances at festivals such as Eutin Opera Festival (Germany), FACYL (Spain), Macau International Music Festival, and the Rohm Music Festival in Kyoto, where he was invited to study and work with Maestro Seiji Ozawa. As choral conductor he has collaborated with numerous ensembles, including the Vienna Philharmonic and the Vienna Symphonic Orchestras, as well as with such conductors as Mariss Jansons and Riccardo Muti.
In September 2013, Mr. Chiang became choirmaster of the Vienna Boys Choir. He has since led the choir on numerous tours of Europe, Asia, and the Americas, conducting in prestigious venues like Tokyo’s Suntory Hall and Opera City, New York’s Carnegie Hall, and Vienna’s Musikverein.