With great sorrow have we received the information that Tobias Hug has passed away.

Tobi has been active in the a-cappella-scene for more than 20 years.
While being active as beatboxer on stage, he also loved showing young people the beautiful use of ones own voice – for vocal songs, but also for beatboxing.
He created the worldwide largest beatbox-choir in Hong Kong (with over 7000 young people beatboxing simultaneously) and supported multiple festivals, not to mention the festival he created by himself, the Black Forest Voices Festival in Kirchzarten (Germany).

Tobi was a founding member of EVA and supported the idea of EVA where he was able to.
We lost a good friend today.
Tilo, Karin, Hanno and Thomas

We are very pleased to inform you that the European Voices Association (EVA) will take over the platform “acapella-online.de” on October 1st. We thank Volker Bauer – the founder and long-time operator of this site – very much for his confidence in us and assure him to give our best and to continue his work conscientiously. Volker Bauer writes the following about his decision:

Dear singers, groups, fans, enthusiasts of vocal music.

Alea iacta est – as the Latin says. The dice have been thrown, a decision has been made, one door is just beginning to close, while another, hopefully bigger one, is opening up and revealing a glimpse of the future of acappella-online.de.

As you may have read on the website and in other places during the last weeks and months, I was looking for successors – because for health reasons I could not do a project like acappella-online.de anymore, and certainly not alone. I was quite open whether this is an individual like me, who does it out of pure enthusiasm, an organisation that already deals with vocal music, or a group of people, who combine to rejuvenate acappella-online.de. There were a lot of conversations, discussions, considerations and procedural models.

Today I can announce the result of this work:

European Voices Association e. V. (EVA) takes over acappella-online.de, the platform for vocal music in German-speaking countries.

I am optimistic that the colleagues from EVA will manage to transform the website, the platform and the information into the here and now and that you, who use the website, will enjoy browsing on acappella-online.de again.

I would like to thank you all for your years of loyalty and support. You have always made sure that I have further developed, supported and expanded. Moreover, not to forget, you took care of the content. acappella-online.de is what you call “community driven” – I took care of the framework, you took care of the content. I thank you very much for that.

My thanks and fingers crossed to European Voices Association, who will now start to fulfil the expectations I and you set in them regarding the new, polished acappella-online.de.

All the best to you and lots of fun with music only made from vocal chords …

Volker
“acappellamaniac”

We are proud to announce, that this years European Voices Award goes to:

Vocal Line

For more than 28 years Vocal Line and director Jens Johansen have set new standards for a cappella music, winning numerous international music prizes and gaining a reputation as one of the best vocal ensembles in the world. Vocal Line has performed with superstars like Bobby McFerrin and The Rolling Stones, travelled all over the world, and they´ve recorded eight studio albums with complex yet catchy arrangements of pop and rock masterpieces.

The video of the presentation of the award can be found here:

(German version below)

The European Voices Association awards the European Voices Award for the year 2018 to the

RAMA Vocal Center (Aalborg) (RVC)

at the Royal Acadamy of Music (Aarhus/Aalborg) (RAMA).

The RAMA Vocal Center receives the award for outstanding achievements in the field of popular training for choir conductors and choir singers.

The RVC is the Danish centre for training programmes for jazz/pop vocal ensemble leaders and is now one of the best in the world.

The RVC offers programmes for choir conductors and soloists, supplementary and extra-occupational courses and a wide variety of inspiration and master classes. Students find a learning environment that is characterized by innovation and competence development. An outstanding team of lecturers, the internationality of the students themselves and, last but not least, excellent technical equipment enable education at the highest level.

The RVC combines intensive study sessions in Aalborg with long distance learning and supervision via digital platforms.

In its quest for continuous artistic and pedagogical development, the RVC is today one of the hotspots of modern vocal music, “the place to be” for ensemble leaders from all over the world.

Professor Jim Daus Hjernøe

is the director and leading head of the RVC. As an internationally sought-after lecturer, excellent musician and ensemble leader, he lives the quest for innovation. With the RVC, Jim has also created an international network that carries ideas, methods and creative potential all over the world.

Jim has also developed the The Intelligent Choir Methodology (TIC). The “intelligent choir” consists of singers who themselves take responsibility for the musical design process.

With Vocal Painting, Jim has further developed Walter Thompson’s Sound Painting for improvisation with the voice and created a powerful tool for musical work in ensembles.


European voices association (EVA) verleiht den

European Voices Award

für das Jahr 2018 an das

RAMA Vocal Center, Aalborg der Royal Acadamy of Music Aarhus (RAMA).

Das RAMA Vocal Center erhält den Preis für die herausragenden Leistungen im Bereich der populären Ausbildung für Chorleiter, Chorsänger.

Das Vocal Center der Royal Academy of Music Aarhus/Aalborg ist das dänische Zentrum für Ausbildungsprogramme für Jazz/Pop-Vokalensemble-Leitung und mittlerweile eines der besten weltweit.

Das RVC bietet Programme für Chorleiter und Solisten, Ergänzungs- und berufsbegleitende Studiengänge und die verschiedensten Inspirations- und Meisterkurse. Studierende finden eine Lernumgebung vor, die durch Innovation und Kompetenzentwicklung geprägt ist. Ein hervorragendes Dozententeam, die Internationalität der Studierenden selbst und nicht zuletzt eine exzellente technische Ausstattung ermöglichen eine Ausbildung auf höchstem Niveau.

Das RVC verbindet dabei intensive Studien-Sessions in Aalborg mit Long-Distance-Learning und Supervision über digitale Plattformen.

In seinem Streben nach ständiger künstlerischer und pädagogischer Weiterentwicklung ist das RVC heute einer der Hotspots moderner Vokalmusik, „the place to be“ für Ensemble-Leiter aus aller Welt.

Professor Jim Daus Hjernøe

ist der Leiter und der führende Kopf des RVC. Als international gefragter Dozent, als exzellenter Musiker und Ensemble-Leiter lebt er das Streben nach Innovation. Mit dem RVC hat Jim gleichzeitig ein internationales Netzwerk geschaffen, das die Ideen, die Methoden und das kreative Potential in alle Welt weiterträgt.

Jim hat darüber hinaus die TIC-Chor-Methodik („The Intelligent Choir“) entwickelt. Der „intelligente Chor“ besteht aus Sängerinnen und Sängern, die selbst Verantwortung für den musikalischen Gestaltungsprozess übernehmen.

Mit dem „Vocal Painting“ hat Jim das „Soundpainting“ von Walter Thompson für die Improvisation mit der Stimme weiterentwickelt und ein mächtiges Tool für die musikalische Arbeit im Ensemble erschaffen.

There are two kinds of choir singers. Some of us are the shy one. We love singing in a group, but we don’t want to be heard too much. We don’t consider ourselves musicians, and we don’t know how to prepare or learn music on our own. In every concert, there are those two measures in that one song that we just don’t sing because they’re too hard. We just move our mouths and hope that our neighbors will manage those notes without us.

And some of us are the musicians, the confident ones, the divas. We audition for solos. We wait for our moment to shine. We love it when the director says our section is too quiet. And we wonder why our fellow singers always suggest, carefully, that we’re too loud.

Jo Annemans is in his element working with both of them. In his workshops (for vocal groups, choirs, or just gatherings of singers) he combines his approximately 20 years of experience singing with Belgian vocal group Voice Male and his day job as a therapist to teach the psychology of group singing. Most of all, he wants to teach singers how to listen. How does my part fit into the overall arrangement? What do my notes mean for the song in this moment? How does my vocal line interact with the others? What’s happening behind the solo?

Jo teaches several kinds of workshops for singers. Some involve learning one of his arrangements just to practice listening skills. Another involves arranging on the spot through improvisation and listening. And for vocal groups and choirs, he also offers individual master classes and coachings.

So what can singers get out of a workshop with Jo? One thing he always tries to do is give singers personal attention without making them feel uncomfortable. A shy singer can become more confident about their voice and start to feel more comfortable with every note they sing. And confident singers can learn how to listen more and understand how they fit into the group’s overall sound. In the end, both types of singers walk away knowing that they all share equal responsibility and value in the choir, and they find joy in realizing: we did this together, and everybody was in it.

Get more info about Jo on his website: www.joannemans.be

A personal review of this year’s International A Cappella Competition in Graz by our Vice-Chairman Peter Martin Jacob

„Es klappert die Mühle am rauschenden Bach“, an Arrangement of this traditional German Folksong by German Vocal Group str8voices was considered to be the „most creative arrangement of the pop category“ at this year’s International A Cappella Competition Graz. The jury also praised the performance of the song. str8voices from Hannover also won the 2nd prize in the pop category. Some of you might know the eight singers from their little youtube-hit, an arrangement of the Star Wars Soundtrack of „The Force awakens“. If not, check it out here. I wish this extraordinary vocal group a continuing splendid career, as they already sing together since eight years. May the Force be with u!

Graz in summer is always worth going there. Where else can you experience around twenty vocal groups of all over the world in three days, not to mention the fabulous climate, the great food and the lovely tiny second largest city in Austria? It’s also very cool to meet so many folks of the a cappella family and have a chat or two.

Apart from str8voices, that surprised me as I have never seen them before, I especially was deeply impressed by the ensemble Georgian Six from … tataaa… Georgia, the European Eastern state at the south-end of the Caucasus. The two female and four male singers showed a highly remarkable performance, in the Jazz Category and particularly in the Classical Category. In both Categories they won the audience award, which is a great statement, I think. I’ve never heard such an amazing version of Khachaturian’s „Sabre Dance“ before, as well as I was very impressed by the own compositions of this perfectly singing group. Their music, as we learned by the adorable and really sweet tall black-haired female singer, is a mix of asian, arabian, georgian, slavic and european influences. A great worldmusic-mix. Highly recommended to everybody. Check out the Vokal Total youtube-channel. You will see and hear what I mean.

Another really striking appearance at this year‘s competition had the young German Vocal Group Quintense from Leipzig. The young two female and three male singers are music students, they founded the group one and a half years ago. Graz was about their fifth public gig, and they won the Jazz Category. Isn’t that amazing? In Pop, they managed to reach the third prize and the audience award. Congratulations! What an outcome! Oh, and they also received the magenta talent trophy, which is given since two years to a very talented ensemble.

In my opinion also worth to mention: Gretchens Antwort, four girls from Berlin. Really great singers. And I like the attitude! And their versions of „Männer“ from Herbert Grönemeyer and their arrangement of Cohen’s „Halleluja“. Upsweep from Rome/Italy. Check out this video. They can sing AND move. They also know how to dress on stage (Italians!), Their „Cry me a river“ thrilled me. And I really liked the grooving base.

In my opinion also worth to mention: Gretchens Antwort, four girls from Berlin. Really great singers. And I like the attitude! And their versions of „Männer“ from Herbert Grönemeyer and their arrangement of Cohen’s „Halleluja“. Upsweep from Rome/Italy. Check out this video. They can sing AND move. They also know how to dress on stage (Italians!), Their „Cry me a river“ thrilled me. And I really liked the grooving base.

Upsweep

Under this link you get an overview of all the prizes, diplomas and awards that were given this year to the participating groups.

Come to Graz in July next year and experience the outdoor opening ceremony called „Marktschreierei“ as well as the great „Dom im Berg“ and the pretty „Minoritensaal“ as the two venues of the competitions. Really extraordinary! Listen to the singing world, dance with the participants at the party, drink and have fun till four o clock in the morning (or later) or just be impressed of great voices.

Yours

Peter

Natural, organic and fresh sounds as it was straight from a backyard passionately composed into rich and full-flavoured harmonies. 
Six vocal enthusiasts joined in the pursuit of a simple goal of capturing the natural warmth and harmony of human voices and translating them into a sensual experience for the enjoyment of the listeners. 
Music is a universal language – there is no instrument more primal than that of a human body and no rhythm more pure that the sound of a beating heart. 
In our musical ventures, we always strive to create a comprehensive harmony of sounds. As the six voices become one we suddenly become aware that the essence of beauty is not at all pretentious, but merely a simple and natural occurrence. With time and persistence such beauty can mature and bring out its genuine splendour and creativity. 

In 2013, the Kreativo Vocal Band began to invest more time to their song creation process with the desire to fulfill their common passion and calling to perform Jazz, Pop and Country music among other popular genres. All singers still continue to perfect their vocal techniques and have a long track record performing at small- and large-scale events world-wide. We give an appealing and playful twist to well known hits of the Slovenian and foreign songs, and in 2015 we have released our first album with arrangements of popular Slovenian songs. 

In addition to performing at various events we have already held numerous independents shows, among which is the traditional annual concert “Igramo na Glas” (Fierce and Loud), and in September 2014 we performed in the non-competitive part of the Slovenian Song Festival. We partake in different music festivals for vocal groups held in Slovenia and abroad, and we already pride ourselves with several more prominent achievements. In 2015, we performed at the International Vokal Total Festival in Austria and were awarded the Silver Award in the “Jazz” category, and also a special Bronze Ward Swingle Award. In May 2016, we attended the Slovenian A Cappella Festival called “Sredi Zvezd” (Among the Stars) held in Žalec and won first place. In July 2016, we appeared at the Total Vokal Festival again and won first place in the “Pop” category, and we were presented with a Gold Award and a Gold Ward Swingle Award. 

With the awards came numerous opportunities to work with famous people from the world of the a cappella music, including Peder Karlsson, Anders Jalkeus (The Real Group) and Andrea Figallo (Flying Pickets). All artists are former members of world-renowned vocal bands with the current mission to spread their rich knowledge and experience among other enthusiasts of vocal music. Working with these experts is key to our professional development; therefore, we hope these cooperations will be the source for our creative and artistic growth in the future.

KATJA KOVAČIČ
Soprano

Tranquil and hard-working girl born and bred in Ljubljana. A lawyer by profession, and a rocker by heart who swears by Japanese cars and sticks to Styrian men (Štajerska region).

JANA GAMSER
Alto

Hard-working, conscientious and uncompromisingly strict when it comes to music performance. Her velvety voice will leave you speechless.

ALEŠ MAJERIČ
Tenor

His sensitive humour and orderly old-fashioned upbringing always follow him around. Love for women, dedicated singing and passion for sports are what keeps him young at heart.

SAMO VOVK
Tenor / Vocal drums

The personification of music itself. Someone, who feels right at home between the lines and spaces of the staff. Relentless Jazz player with a perfect pitch for rhythm and intonation. Favourite waste of time – the electric guitar.

DOMINIK ŠTRUCELJ
Tenor / Vocal drums

The most friendly “drum machine” in the Universe and a matchless sound engineer, hacker and heartily White Carniolan (region of Bela Krajina)

LUKA ČERNE
Bass

A thrifty and resourceful bass singer from Upper Carniola (Gorenjska region) with strong managerial skills. Time is his worst enemy, but when it comes to music, everything can be put on hold.

http://www.kreativo.si/

The definitive book on beatboxing by the renowned beatbox performers and coaches Indra Tedjasukmana and Andreas Kuch.

Need a bite-size drum kit and percussion section? No instruments are required to achieve stylistic fluency with this book! It offers an easy and hands-on approach to the basics of beatboxing and is the ideal tool for classroom practice and self-study. All important beatbox sounds are explained with examples from various music styles, stretching from rock and ballads to hip-hop and Latin music.

Contents

  • Basic beatboxing techniques and sounds
  • Patterns and fills in four styles: rock, ballads, hip-hop, and Latin music
  • Tandem beatboxing: patterns for two or more beatboxers
  • Beatbox solo works: demanding solo pieces for impressive performances
  • A special chapter on microphones
  • A chapter devoted to optimizing your practicing routines and finding new sounds

The enclosed DVD contains 93 video clips, which explain the beatbox sounds and patterns. Demonstrations by the authors teach sounds, rhythms, and styles. Performances of the solo pieces offer authentic examples and creative impulses for your own interpretations.

The audio part of the DVD contains 32 audio loops and play-alongs in different styles, which act as groovy soundtracks to practice beatboxing and will help you develop a varied beatbox repertoire.

This book is ideal for

  • Teachers who want to inspire their students, and vice versa
  • Choir directors, choirs, and vocal ensembles who want to add a new dimension to their music
  • Drummers, singers, beatmakers, DJs, MCs, and all other fans of groove

The introduction video (in German) is here:

Example page can be downloaded here.

And you can buy it here.

Dear Friends of Vocalmente !

We are so happy to announce our programme for this summer’s Vocalmente Festival.

This will be the third edition and we are proud that Vocalmente has established itself as so quickly in Fossano, in the region of Piemonte and in Italy as a major vocal festival. We’re grateful to have the support of the Fondazione, the city, and the people of Fossano –  and we have set firm roots in short time. The best symbol of this is Aca Casa – the offer to our camp participants to stay in host families. Last year was the launch of the project and the sucess and positive feedback has been overwhelming. What a great way to make connections and build friendships between our visitors from around the world and the people of Fossano . And this year will be even more international as the word spreads around Europe.

It’s a great pleasure to welcome The Swingle Singers as our festival headliner – the group needs no introduction, with 53 years of history and 5 Grammies under their belts. The group has maintained its reputation for excellence and originality and is considered in 2016 to be amongst the most exciting and innovative groups to see live. The group has always had a special bond with italian audiences and a great relationship with italian musicians and personalities like Piero Angela or the late Luciano Berio.

Our Friday night act are Slixs, a funky and fun six-piece. Slixs is probably the grooviest act ever to come out of Germany – Bobby McFerrin chose them as his touring vocal group for his ‘Vocabularies’ tour – and they are great entertainers.

On Sunday, you are in for a treat with Women of the World – four female performers, who hail from different corners of the world and who bring their traditional songs to create a mesmerising show full of warmth, taking you on a musical journey.

In 2014, they won the Harmony Sweepstakes, (the most important US A Cappella Competition) and have been touring around the world ever since then.

The cornerstone of our festival is of course the Single Singers Camp – This gives you a chance to learn some of their music, get insights into the techniques, get to know the tips and tricks – while working on some of fundamental skills of a cappella singing. Similar to last year, participants will get a chance to perform with the group on stage – and record and video a festival song !

We also decided to add another element to our educational programme aimed at ambitious a cappella groups that want to get intensive coaching: A Cappella groups can apply to be part of the

Vocalmentor Programme and have the chance to work on their own repertoire. Peder Karlsson and  Katarina Henryson (both founding members of the Real Group) have great experience in helping groups to develop and improve. The groups get a chance to perform on our Castle Stage – so they can apply what they have learned straight away. We can accept only 6 groups this year – so make sure to get your application in early !

And if you come as in individual singer and would like to perform some great music with others – please join again the Single Singers. Anyone can join and after a few rehearsals during the  Emily May ‚t Hoen  and Annemarie Homan conceived the idea at a Camp with the Single Singers in Italy and organised the first Single Singers for the London  A Cappella Festival – since then the idea has spread like wildfire to festivals around the globe so it’s wonderful to have them back here in Italy.

Check out the page for more info and get in touch !
http://www.vocalmente.net/events/the-single-singers/

Vocaloops 2015 was the first ever A Cappella Loop Station Competition and a huge success, giving Loop Artists from around Europe a platform to showcase and compete. We are looking forward to hosting this great event again.

If you have been to an A Cappella or Vocalmente Festival before, you will know that the singing never stops.. and we hope you will share your singing either on the street (at the Singers Corner) , at the Vocalmente Jam in the Castle at night. If you’d like to to perform with your group on the Castle Stage, please do get in touch to apply for a slot. The atmosphere is wonderful and the courtyard is always packed – you will have a warm and attentive audience !

We look forward to welcoming you back at the Festival – feel free to share with your friends and fellow singers and see you in Fossano in the August !

Best wishes,

Tobias Hug & The Festival Team

Info: www.vocalmente.net

Tickets: www.vocalmente.net/informations/tickets

FB https://www.facebook.com/vocalmentefestival

TW https://twitter.com/VocalmenteFest

G+ https://plus.google.com/+VocalmenteNetwork/videos

 YT https://www.youtube.com/VocalmenteNetwork

In April, due to an invitation of the AGV Munich, I had the pleasure and honour to take part at a Vocal Ensemble Masterclass of the famous King’s Singers. The coaches have been Countertenor David Hurley, Tenor Julian Gregory and Bass Jonathan Howard.

The coached ensembles were: Bolongaro SextettStimmgold6 FOR CHORDShohes CEnsemble EncoreVox Aeterna. The workshops took place during a whole tuesday afternoon, in the evening was a concert in a full concert hall with hundreds of listeners. Every ensemble sang 10 to 20 minutes. After every performance the coaches told of their impressions of the workshop-day.

I had a blast. It was definitely a great experience to see the coaches interacting with the ensembles and how (or even if) the ensembles realized the recommendations of the coaches. Every ensemble did a great work during this afternoon. It was great to hear and see such talented voices. I got again convinced in my deepest credo, that the singing itself is not the only issue. Presentation, staging, a certain easiness and charme also play a big role in the world of entertainment. And entertainment and presenting classical music doesn’t exclude each other.

My personal favourites of the day were the ensembles Hohes C from Salzburg (which I already knew from the International A Cappella Competition in Graz and the Festival Sangeslust in Bayreuth) as well as Vox Aeterna from a grammar school in Amberg/Oberpfalz/Bavaria. Inspiring fresh performances!

Congratulations to the organizers of the AGV Munich. They are planning to continue with these Masterclasses next year, as I heard. Most likely LEVELELEVEN = The Real Group and Rajaton will be the coaches. Very good idea, guys. European Vocies Association will gladly support you with this as much as we can. We love education and networking.

Best vocal greetings

Peter M. Jacob
EVA Vice-Chairman