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Harmony (1861) – Hollabrunner's chorus made the friends of Herborn rave

Harmony (1861) – Hollabrunner's chorus made the friends of Herborn rave

The Young Friends of Herborn (Germany) invited the Harmony Choral Society 1861 to visit them during Pentecost this year to mark the 50th anniversary of the choral partnership. It was helpful for the choir to be able to “rehearse” with a concert in the seminar hall before departure. After a secret vote by the choir members on the program to be sung and after extensive rehearsals, the band performed the “best songs” from the past fifteen years.

In front of a well-filled hall, there was something to suit every taste: madrigals, motets, black spirituals, waltzes, choral music from films, evergreens, Austrian pop, Viennese songs, neo-folk songs and – like the icing on the cake, so to speak. – the first show. Matthias Bender confidently led the choir during the concert, and Gerhard Suls led Bruckner's “Locus iste” and two spirituals. The end of the first part of the program showed how confidently and coordinated the choir and the choir director work together.

Sometimes all you have to do is eyebrow

It was Love Songs Waltz Op. 52 by Johannes Brahms for four-part chorus and four piano hands: Thomas Butcher and Matthias Bender. It became clear that acting did not require any grand gestures. Sometimes it was just a gesture of the head, sometimes just a raise of the choir director's eyebrow, that led the choir through the song cycle. This demonstrated Harmony's claim to be one of the best amateur choirs in the area.

During the ceremony, Matthias Bender received the Gold Conductor's Pin from the Lower Austria Choral Society.

Harmony Choir Society 1861

In the second part, evergreen songs, astropop, Viennese songs and variations on Werner Totzauer's Carinthian song, including the premiere of “Lorelei”. Some honors were also presented during the ceremony. Robert Kellner and Gerhard Sulz received the Gold Medal of Honor from the Austrian Choral Society, and choir director Matthias Bender received the Gold Choral Conductor's Pin from the Lower Austria Choral Society.

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Theresia Dangel received a gold pin from the association, and one bronze each for Gaby Wertner, Lizzy Hochbuchler and Christel Hochbuchler. With these accolades and strong applause, the harmony is now ready for the journey to the Westerwald. After arriving by bus with Marek Reisen, sightseeing was on the agenda for the following racial Saturday. The choir members visited Ehrenbreitstein Castle at the confluence of the Moselle and Rhine rivers, and then the Old Town of Koblenz.

Harmony on a visit to Herborn

All the “Hollabrunners” were deeply affected by the trip to Germany and admired the hospitality shown by the people of Herborn.

Harmony Choir Society 1861

The highlight of the itinerary was a boat trip on the Rhine River that led to the Lorelei Rock. There the Hollabrunners met their hosts and sang together Friedrich Selcher's “Loreley,” written in 1824. There was also Sunday singing. The concert of the two choirs took place in the Kulturscheune in the late afternoon – in the presence of distinguished guests such as the responsible State Secretary of Hesse Christoph Degennes and Mayor Katja Gronau.

Friends of the Hairborn youth started the program, and after a few pieces they handed it over to the union. He repeated the Hollabrunn concert to great acclaim. Choir directors Solz and Bender were convinced that performing at Herborn was better than performing at home.

One of their childhood friend singers said that there is no choir in their area as good as Harmony. If that wasn't a successful singing tour.