HISTORY

One voice for collective singing in Europe!

In 2011, the European Choral Association – Europa Cantat came into existence as the merger of two major European choral organisations; AGEC and EUROPA CANTAT – EFYC. We since have been thriving to be the leading pan-European non-profit organisation dedicated to life-long learning and cultural exchange through collective singing.

We are proud to incorporate the rich history of both AGEC and EUROPA CANTAT – EFYC and are looking to continue the important work that has been done since the 1950s in uniting Europe through singing.

ECA-EC Presidents

2018 – today | Carlo Pavese (IT)
2012 – 2018 | Gábor Móczár (HU)
2011 – 2012 | Sante Fornasier (IT)

ECA-EC GENERAL ASSEMBLIES

2021 | Lyon (FR)
2020 | online – replacing Galway (IE)
2019 | Ljubljana (SI)
2018 | Uçhisar, Cappadocia (TR)
2017 | Tallinn (EE)
2016 | Utrecht (NL)
2015 | Helsinki (FI)
2014 | Barcelona (ES)
2013 | Pécs (HU)
2012 | Toulouse (FR)
2011 | Turin (IT)

Click here for full list of GAs with programmes, photos &more

 

 

ECA-EC SECRETARY GENERALS

2011 – today | Sonja Greiner (DE)

 

On 1 January 2011, AGEC and EUROPA CANTAT – EFYC merged to create the European Choral Association – Europa Cantat, following membership decisions from 9 May 2009 (AGEC) and 14 November 2009 (Europa Cantat – EFYC).

Arbeitsgemeinschaft Europäischer Chorverbände (AGEC)

AGEC History

During the 1952 Tiroler Sängerfest in Innsbruck (Austria), representatives of choir associations in Austria, Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland established the idea to promote choir singing by exchanging compositions, choirs and other initiatives throughout Europe. In 1954, the West European Union of Singers was founded in St. Gallen (Switzerland).

The official foundation event of the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Europäischer Chorverbände AGEC was held in Strasbourg (France) on 10 December 1955, where a first board was elected. The members of AGEC (national and regional choral federations from all over Europe) aimed to ensure quality by way of composition assignments, conducting courses, training and workshops. In matters concerning the development of singing culture in general, music lessons at schools, the singing among young people and the promotion of music education, AGEC played an active role. Other initiatives taken by AGEC were an annual composition prize, the formation of the EuroChoir, the EuroFestivalchoir and the edition of songbooks.

AGEC Presidents

2006 – 2011 | Michaël Scheck (BE)
1996 – 2006 | Hartmut Doppler (DE)
1990 – 1996 | Bernard Stolz (CH)
1987 – 1990 | Hans Hierck (NL)
1980 – 1987 | Dr. Walter Weidmann (NL)
1971 – 1980 | H.F. Brune (NL)
1955 – 1971 | Dr. Paul Plugshaupt (CH)

Europa Cantat – European Federation of Young Choirs

Europa Cantat - EFYC history

In the late 1950s, conductors from different European countries, who had partly been soldiers in World War II, met during a youth event at Loreley (Germany) and discussed what would be the best way to make sure that their young singers would not want to go to war with each other ever again. On the model of the French Choralies festival, they created a festival in which choirs would not only sing for each other, but rather participate together in different workshops. Also, singers would be sleeping in the same accommodation, eating together and spending their free time together, and thus making friends for life.

The founding meeting took place in Geneve (Switzerland) in 1960. The year after, the first EUROPA CANTAT festival was held in Passau (Germany) in 1961, ending just days before the Berlin Wall was erected on August 13th. In 1963, the European Federation of Young Choirs was founded in Bonn (Germany), and renamed EUROPA CANTAT – European Federation of Young Choirs in 1981.

Main founders: À Cœur Joie (France) & Arbeitskreis Musik in der Jugend (Germany)

Main aim: to give an organisational structure to international exchange and international cooperation

Europa Cantat - EFYC Presidents

2009 – 2010 | Santa Fornasier (IT)
2003 – 2009 | Jeroen Schrijner (NL)
2000 – 2003 | Christopher Simmons (UK)
1995 – 2000 | Noël Minet (BE)
1994 – 1995 | Gilbert Martens (BE)
1982 – 1994 | Marcel Corneloup (FR)
1961 – 1982 | François Bourel (FR)

Honorary Presidents
1982 – 2004 | François Bourel (FR)
1963 – 1972 | César Geoffray (FR)

Europa Cantat - EFYC general assemblies

2010 | Namur (BE)
2009 | Sofia (BG)
2008 | San Sebastián (ES)
2007 | Utrecht (NL)
2006 | Örebro (SE)
2005 | Lyon (FR)
2004 | Venice (IT)
2003 | Luzern (CH)
2002 | Mainz (DE)
2001 | Kerekegyháza/Kunpuszta (HU)
2000 | Gent (BE)
1999 | Barcelona (ES)
1998 | Stockholm (SE)
1997 | Linz (AT)
1965 | Bonn (DE)

 

 

Europa Cantat - EFYC secretary generals

2001 – 2010 | Sonja Greiner (DE)
1995 – 1999 | Dolf Rabus (DE)
1988 – 1995 | Hans-Dieter Reinecke (DE)
1985 – 1988 | Manfred Ehrhorn (DE)
1982 – 1985 | Herbert Saß (DE)
1976 – 1982 | Christoph Kühlewein (DE)
1963 – 1976 | Paul Wehrle (DE)