Feast your ears on this festival of choral music in Goa

If you are a fan of choral music, brace yourself to be awed by the sounds at the two-day Monte Music Festival.
Feast your ears on this festival of choral music in Goa
The Stuti Choral Ensemble will perform at the 2-day Monte Music FestivalGomantak Times

The much-awaited music festival which used to be held annually in the month of February at the famous Chapel of Nossa Senhora do Monte, or Monte Chapel, is now here in an offline format, after a gap of two years! Yes, we are speaking about the highly creative Monte Music Festival, to be held on April 23, 2022 and April 24, 2022 at the Chapel of the Weeping Cross, in the Santa Monica Convent, Old Goa.

This year, the venue of the 20th edition of the Monte Music Festival will be different and it will have just two concerts on two days, but the quality of the music will remain the same.

This event has been organised by Fundação Oriente and Cidade de Goa, Dona Paula, with the support of the Museum of Christian Art, Furtado’s Music Co. and the Archdiocese of Goa and Daman.

“Since the Chapel of Nossa Senhora do Monte is undergoing much needed restoration, our festival this year will take place at the Chapel of the Weeping Cross in the Santa Monica Convent, one of the most quintessential spaces in Monte Santo, Old Goa,” informs Inês Figueira, director of Fundação Oriente, Panjim.

The event will open on April 23 at 7 pm with the Stuti Choral Ensemble, directed by Maestro Parvesh Java. It will present a magnificent interpretation of Handel’s Messiah (Part II) with specially invited soloists, Farah Ghadiali, Subin Mathai, Kersi Gazdar and Rahul Bharadwaj, along with Nadine Crasto and Smit Shah on the piano and an ensemble of violins, led by Eshvita Menezes.

On April 24, at 6 pm, the Ektaal Children’s Choir, directed by Nayantara de Lima Leitão, will present a concert titled ‘Hope in Harmony,’ performed by their junior and senior choirs, accompanied by Ingrid Anne Nazareth (piano) and Frederika Cotta (violin).

The venue of this year's Monte Music Festival
The venue of this year's Monte Music FestivalGomantak Times

ABOUT THE CHOIRS

Stuti Choral Ensemble

Stuti Choral Ensemble was created by Fr Eufemiano Miranda in 2009. The then parish priest at St Inez Church, (in St Inez, Panim), he set up the choir to revive the choral music tradition in Goa.

In 2021, Stuti joined forces with the Goa University Choir (founded by the late conductor, Santiago Lusardi Girelli) and currently has nearly 50 singers, making it Goa’s largest choral ensemble. The choir sings a diverse repertoire, all sacred, including oratorios, masses, motets, hymns and carols, both, accompanied as well as a capella.

Works are sung in several languages, notably English, Konkani and Latin, but also German, Italian, French and Portuguese.

The ensemble has performed at prestigious festivals, such as the Monte Music Festival and the Ketevan Sacred Music Festival, and in various churches all over Goa. Stuti is currently directed by Parvesh Java.

The concert 'Hope in Harmony' will be presented by the Ektaal Children's Choir
The concert 'Hope in Harmony' will be presented by the Ektaal Children's ChoirGomantak Times

Ektaal Children’s Choir

Ektaal was formed in 2014, under the guidance of Nayantara de Lima Leitão (vocal coach/conductor). The aim was to introduce children to choral music, harmony and meaningful interaction, without the pressure of vocal exams. The children are given ample opportunity to perform at public concerts, especially at their annual shows and Christmas Carol concerts at various venues around Goa.

In its early days, the choir was divided into the Treble Clefs (8 years and above) and Tiny Trebles (4 to 7 years) and performed as The Natal singers during the Christmas season. Today, their 45-strong choir, with children from both Panjim and Vasco, performs as the Ektaal Children's Choir, comprising its Senior Choir (8-14 years) and Junior Choir (5 to 7 years).

The Senior Choir has performed three consecutive times at the Ketavan World Sacred Music Festival, in Old Goa; and due to the pandemic, in 2021, in virtual mode for the same festival. Also, last year, Ektaal performed at the Stop-Gaps Virtual Children's Music Festival with great acclaim.

For more information, call or follow Fundação Oriente on their social media outlets #forienteindia

The Stuti Choral Ensemble will perform at the 2-day Monte Music Festival
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