Mon, Jul 08, 2019 - Page 2 News List

Children’s choir wins in Germany

NOT JUST AWARDS:Made up of Paiwan children from Pingtung County’s Majia Township, the singing group is named after the word for ‘hope’ in the Paiwan language

By Chiu Chih-jou and Sherry Hsiao  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

The Puzangalan Children’s Choir performs in this undated photograph.

Photo courtesy of the Puzangalan Children’s Choir

The Puzangalan Children’s Choir of Pingtung County won the Children’s Choirs category at the 11th International Johannes Brahms Choir Festival and Competition.

Held in Wernigerode, Germany, the festival and competition ran from Wednesday last week until yesterday.

The choir also placed second in the Folklore category and fifth in the Sacred Choral Music a capella category.

“This is the best the choir has ever done in the competition,” executive director Tsai Yi-fang (蔡義方) said. “No matter where it competes, the choir always performs a Taiwanese folk song and a traditional Paiwan song.”

By sharing songs from their homeland, the children allow people to understand the cultures of Taiwan, he said.

The students, who left for Germany on Monday last week, could travel to the event thanks to donations brought in by fundraising hosted by Union Bank of Taiwan.

On Tuesday next week, after its return to Taiwan, the group is scheduled to perform at the headquarters of the Liberty Times (sister paper of the Taipei Times), to say thank you to the public for its support and well wishes.

People used to question the usefulness of letting children go abroad to compete, but the choir was founded to help Aboriginal children feel more confident about their future and culture, Tsai said.

Economically disadvantaged families are common in Aboriginal communities, Tsai added.

With little support outside of school, children can fall into a cycle of poverty, Tsai said, but added that four of the choir’s founding members are headed to university this year.

Their efforts to build hope might not have had immediate results, but change is happening, he added.

The choir rehearses after school and on weekends, often sacrificing time spent with their families or playing with other children, he said.

Made up of Paiwan children from Pingtung County’s Majia Township (瑪家), the choir is named after the word for “hope” in the Paiwan language.

This story has been viewed 2295 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top