Boys’ Choir to Help Celebrate Reformation

2017. március 07., kedd

As part of the celebrations surrounding the 500th year of the Reformation, the St. Thomas Boys’ Choir of Leipzig will be performing on March 16 at the Great Church in Debrecen.  The concert is one of the highlights of the programming planned by the RCH’s Reformation Memorial Committee for 2017.

Preparations for events in 2017 have long been underway in Hungary, with the Reformed Church in Hungary celebrating both the 500th Anniversary of the Reformation and the 450th anniversary of the establishment of the Hungarian Reformed Church (HRC). The RCH and wider Hungarian church have much to reflect on and celebrate in the coming year, and the church’s Reformation Memorial Committee -planned events will help the wider church to do just that.

The St. Thomas Boys’ Choir, of the St. Thomas Church in Leipzig, was founded more than 800 years ago as part of a unique boarding school for boys. Currently, nearly 100 boys aged 9-18 study together there and also tour the world with the choir. It has not been easy to keep the traditions of the school alive and remain worthy of the reputation, but due to a combination of a balanced upbringing, rigorous coursework, wonderful teaching, and a supportive community, the student body today produces the same high standards as the school did in the 18th century. 

The performance at the Great Church in Debrecen will be led by a new chorus master, Gotthold Schwarz, who is a former pupil of the St. Thomas School. He began his musical career in the institution in the 1960s and has continued to collaborate regularly with the renowned choir in the decades since. The choir focuses on Bach and the music of the German Baroque, but during their time in Budapest they will also sing a selection of works by less well known composers, all with religious themes. 

The RCH’s Reformation Memorial Committee has many other events planned for the coming year, like the Common Synod of the HRC and the Starpoint Youth Festival.

Debrecen was chosen as a City of Reformation for the 500-year anniversary of the Reformation and has prepared festivities for the coming year – including the St. Thomas Boys’ Choir of Leipzig. Guests from around the world gathered in Debrecen, Hungary at the end of January for the opening ceremony of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, as well as the 450th anniversary of the Debrecen Synod. Celebrations will continue throughout 2017 with many other events planned.


Article by Kearstin Bailey




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