Looking Ahead to 2012 World Choir Games

By Max Resnik

March 29, 2012 Updated Mar 29, 2012 at 5:50 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (Indiana’s NewsCenter) – With the 2012 World Choir Games just a few months away, the competition’s North American director dropped by the Voices of Unity, a two time gold medalist, to promote the event.

The 2012 World Choir Games will be held in Cincinnati this year. It is the first time the Choral Olympics, as they are commonly called, will be held on U.S. soil. Ohio’s Queen City will play host to some 16,000 choral performers from 63 countries around the world. Lori Lobsiger, Director of the North American Markets and Decatur native, says the games provide listeners with a worldly experience that they can get just by driving a few hours south to Cincinnati.

“Sixty-three nations, native costume, music of their country, the dances in the folkloric category of countries and the cultural exchange to see the world is huge. And this is what makes it a really exciting event for people to take part in.”

Performers will participate in more than 20 different musical genres. Lobsiger says the games put the arts on full display, especially in a time when funding for the arts is being slashed in school districts across the country.

“There are so many studies that tell us how much better our students are if they have arts education. The arts, learning to sing, learning to play an instrument and learning to listen and enjoy music and to visually look at a piece of art and understand it—this is something you take with you for the rest of your life.”

Lobsiger hopes the Fort Wayne community takes the trip to Cincinnati this year to see the Voices of Unity defend their two gold medals in the the pop and gospel genres. She says other choral groups have inquired about whether the Voices of Unity are returning because of the impact they had at the games in 2010.

“They ask about Voices of Unity. Are they coming back? They had such an exceptional moment with the Hong Kong Choir. We want to seem them again. They really did have an impact and I hope that the Fort Wayne Community makes the jaunt to Cincinnati.”

The World Choir Games are July 4-July 14.

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