Sunday, May 26, 2013

Participate in Mahler 8 in Thailand this summer!

July 20-24, 2013

Dear Choirmaster, Voice Teacher or Individual Singer:

The performance of Mahler’s “Symphony of a Thousand” taking place in late July in Thailand is an incredibly historic event.  With already about ten choirs from four continents sending representatives, it is the first performance of the largest work in the standard classical repertoire in Thailand.  Singing in “Mahler Eight” is a life’s dream for many choristers around the world and it is only possible in Thailand because we are working with the Festa Musicale’s international choir festival in Pattaya, and are able to bring choirs participating in this festival into our concert.

We currently have about 250 singers, local and international, involved, with a core group of around 75 plus a large children’s choir rehearsing regularly each Thursday. But I could use about 100, or even 200 more local singers in order to make sure that we have enough to balance the 130-piece orchestra that Mahler has written for.

In view of this I am writing to heads of music departments, music schools, and choirmasters in Bangkok to invite your participation.

This concert is undoubtedly the most ambitious classical music event in Thailand’s history.  People who love to sing often dream of participating in the “Symphony of a Thousand” and this would be the first time the opportunity is ever made available in Thailand.

We would very much love to have you on board whether you are in Thailand or from abroad.  Many choirs have already joined or are sending representatives — choirs from as far away as England, Czech Republic, Indonesia, and the United States.  We’re working on trying to get singers from every continent to make this a true reaching across the globe.

If you are an international group or outside Bangkok, the idea is that you would study the work in advance and arrive in Bangkok in time for the final rehearsals.  These rehearsals will take place in the last week, from July 20th onward.  We can give you access to all sorts of aids to help you learn the work, such as learning mp3s and so on.

Because the performances of the Symphony of a Thousand are in part subsidized by the Department of Cultural Promotions of Thailand’s Ministry of Culture, we are able to offer an extremely cheap land package, based on double occupancy, at a convenient hotel in Bangkok.  The first hundred people to sign up will receive their land package gratis; for the rest we ask for a contribution of only 100 Euros, which includes your hotel, transportation to and from the rehearsals, and most meals.

If you are local to Bangkok, you will have the ability to rehearse along with the Orpheus Choir, which meets every Thursday evening in a convenient location next to the Thong Lo BTS station.  

A children’s choir is also being formed in Bangkok which will join with children of the Montfort School in Chiengmai and the Bonifantes choir from Pardubice, Czech Republic, to sing the children’s choir sections of the work, so children from age 8 or so may also join this group.

An online form is available to join up at  Or you can write directly to Athalie de Koning, the choir master of the Orpheus Choir, at  

Please join us and become part of this historic event.  We look forward to hearing from all of you!

Best wishes

Somtow Sucharitkul
General and Artistic Director
Bangkok Opera Foundation/Opera Siam


Saturday, July 20:  
    morning: arrive in Bangkok with music already rehearsed
    afternoon: free: Bangkok tour
    evening: welcome dinner and preliminary rehearsal

Sunday, July 21:
    morning: free
    afternoon: piano rehearsal, choirs and children’s choirs
    evening: rehearsal with orchestra and soloists

Monday, July 22:    
    late afternoon: rehearsal with orchestra and soloists

Tuesday, July 23:
    6 pm: sound check
    8 pm: OPEN DRESS REHEARSAL (for video)

Wednesday, July 24:
    6 pm: sound check
    10 pm: post-performance reception

July 25 onward: Festa Musicale Competition and Festival in Pattaya 

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