July 10, 2008 — Bellevue, WA — Bellevue Chamber Chorus, directed by Dr. Fredrick Lokken, took first prize in the Adult Mixed Chorus category at the 2008 International Choral Kathaumixw festival held in Powell River, B.C., July 1-5. During the festival, the Chorus performed in two juried competitions and four concerts, which were shared with a combination of adult and youth choirs. The competitions were adjudicated by an international jury of conductors and composers from Canada, France, the Netherlands, and Sweden.
In recognition of their award, the Chorus performed before the grand festival assembly at the awards ceremony along with other first prize winners in all competition categories. Included in that performance was another Seattle-area winning choir: the Columbia Children’s Choir, directed by Steve Stevens. During the final day of the festival, Bellevue Chamber Chorus also participated in the massed choir performance of over 1000 voices as part of the festival’s closing ceremony.
Begun in 1984, the renowned International Choral Kathaumixw (a native word meaning “a gathering of different peoples”) festival is held every other summer in the small town of Powell River, northwest of Vancouver. In 2008, more than 30 children’s, youth, and adult choirs from around the world participated in its concerts and competitions. Many of the world’s best known conductors, choruses, soloists, and orchestras have appeared at the festival over the years.
After the festival the Chorus joined with Ozvena Youth Chorus from Slovakia for a five-day singing tour through portions of BC’s Interior. Both choruses were enthusiastically received by local audiences, with frequent standing ovations.
Bellevue Chamber Chorus is grateful for the opportunity to have been invited to perform in this festival, in the company of so many incredibly talented choral groups and singers from across the globe.