A “Bi-communal” Beethoven!

“This imaginative idea was captured by the German conductor of the Cyprus Symphony Orchestra Jens Georg Bachmann.”

By Constantinos Christodoulides
“THE IDEA: Beethoven Ninth Symphony, beyond the fact that it is one of the top creations of
classical music, is a hymn to joy, brotherhood, peace, world reconciliation, principles that are
magnificently highlighted by the verses and its inexorable music. The idea was to make a
concert with the Beethoven 9th Symphony in Cyprus, and with soloists from Greece, Turkey
and the two communities of Cyprus.”

“THE INSPIRATION: This imaginative idea was captured by the German conductor of the
Cyprus Symphony Orchestra Jens Georg Bachmann. Having experiences from the divided
Berlin, the conductor wanted to send messages about the reunification of the divided
Nicosia and, in general, of Cyprus, but also about the peaceful coexistence of the
communities of Cyprus through the work of Beethoven. Passionately and consistently
serving his idea, he undertook such a project and managed to bring together for the concert
the following:”

• DENIZ UZUN (Mezzo Soprano) from Turkey
• LADEN INCE (soprano) Turkish Cypriot
• DIMITRIS PAKSOGLOU (Tenor) from Greece
• KYROS PATSALIDIS (baritone) Greek Cypriot
MIXED CHOIR ‘SELECTION’, conductor Angelina Nikolaidou
OPUS CHORALIS, conductor Angelina Nikolaidou
BI-COMMUNAL CHOIR, conductors Lena Melanidou and Kursat Tilki
CHAMBER CHOIR "POLYFONIA", conductor Maro Scordi

“The Concert was titled CONCERT FOR PEACE AND DIALOGUE, was held under the auspices of the President of the Republic and was given on 30/05/2019 at RIALTO theater in Limassol.
On the stage, 120 Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots, Greeks and Turks, led by the German
conductor, together with the 600 G/Cypriot and T/Cypriot spectators in the packed hall,
shared the wonderful creation of Beethoven. The performance responded to the demands
of the project, with the result that the audience clapped up for more than 10 minutes at the
end of the concert. The project proved to be very successful and the messages of the
Symphony filled the souls of both the spectators, as well as the musicians and the singers…”


“When about 8 months ago the Berlin Conductor transferred his idea to the Bi-communal
Choir through its conductors, it was enthusiastically accepted on the one hand and, on the
other hand, awe-inspiring. Excitement because a great musical work was put to the service
of peace in our country, which is the reason for the existence of the particular choir, and
awe because the musical demands of the work are particularly high for the amateur singers
of the Choir. As expected, the Choir accepted the challenge and was set to work. With the
unrelenting efforts of the conductors and the marvelous consistency of its members, the
Choir was properly prepared and eventually managed to respond to the high demands of the
project. We must underline the contribution of the German conductor, who, in the
rehearsals of the last ten days, gave with the passion, knowledge, courtesy, persistence and
patience, the necessary impetus in all groups, to deepen into the meaning and requirements
of the project.”

“In May that left us, the Bi-communal Choir completed 22 years of life and continued action.
Despite the disappointment of the stagnation on the Cyprus issue and regardless of the way
the problem will be settled, the Choir grows and emits with its music its determination to
build bridges of peace and reconciliation. It continues to travel all over Cyprus performing in
small and bigger events. At the same time it raises its artistic level with performances like
the above described. It is worth mentioning that on May 12, a performance was given at the
Municipal Theater of Agios Athanasios of Limassol, where the choir of the municipality of
Agios Athanasios, together with the Bi-communal Choir and the Orchestra of the Nicosia
Turkish Cypriot Municipality, enchanted the audience with mainly Cypriot bilingual songs.
The event was warmly welcomed by the Mayor of Agios Athanasios, the visiting mayor of
the Nicosia Turkish Cypriot Municipality and the Ambassador of Slovakia, a country that has
been struggling for as many as thirty years to bring together the political parties of the two
communities of Cyprus.”

Constantinos Christodoulides is a member of the Bi-communal Choir.

Voice Of The Island-2019


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