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The Boys' Choir of St. Paul's Choir School embarks on European Tour

Boys' Choir of St. Paul's Choir School in Cambridge will tour and perform at important sites in Germany and Austria later this month. Pilot photo/courtesy St. Paul's Choir School

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CAMBRIDGE -- The Boys' Choir of St. Paul's Choir School announces plans to travel abroad this month for a European performance tour. The Choir, formed in the European chorister tradition, will tour and performs in iconic, historic destinations in Munich, Regensburg and Koln, Germany, as well as Salzburg, Austria, during a 10-day itinerary, including academic and cultural exploration that support St. Paul's Choir School's educational model. The Choir is directed by Saint Paul's Choir School (SPCS) Director of Music and Conductor James Kennerley, accompanied by Assistant Director of Music Maks Adach, organ.

On its first tour in this region, The Boys' Choir performs repertoire in parallel to its destinations abroad, featuring selections by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (with a performance in his birthplace of Salzburg), Orlando di Lasso (who settled in Munich), and more performed by the choristers either acapella or with organ accompaniment.

The Boys' Choir of St. Paul's, currently composed of 29 boys ranging from ages 9 to 14, in grades three through eight at St. Paul's Choir School, will travel through two countries accompanied by 18 chaperones. Most recently, the choristers traveled to Washington, D.C., at the invitation of Cardinal Seán P. O'Malley to perform at the Sacred Heart Shrine and at Catholic University's St. Vincent de Paul Chapel. On a prior international tour, the Choir visited Mexico, where it performed at the largest basilica in the Americas, Our Lady of Guadalupe, and at San Josemaria Escriva Church, both in Mexico City.

The Boys' Choir of St. Paul's school curriculum is currently exploring the history and music of Germany and Austria, much of which the choristers will encounter and perform during their travels. Visiting this historic European heartland, the students will walk in the footsteps of those they study and perform -- Bach, Beethoven, Handel, Mendelssohn, and Mozart, among others. The lifeblood of the curriculum is rooted in these composers' classical and liturgical masterpieces.

During this tour, which runs from Feb. 16 to 23, the choir will perform at the Cathedral Church of Our Lady (Frauenkirche) in Munich, a Vespers services in affiliation with the Regensburg Boys' Choir at Regensburger Domspatzen in Regensburg, at historic Salzburg Cathedral in Salzburg, Austria. The group returns to Germany for final performances at the Church of the Holy Ghost (Heilig Geist Kirche) in Munich, and at a High Mass at Cologne Cathedral in Koln.

Academic and cultural activities on the itinerary include a walking tour of Munich, a tour of Regensburg Cathedral, a day with fellow choristers at Regensburg Domspatzen Choir School, city tour of Salzburg (including a visit to Mozart's home and historic sites relevant to The Sound of Music film), visiting Neuschwanstein Castle, Marienbrucke Bridge, Ulm Minster, Wurzburg Palace, and Steiff Museum. Each destination holds particular merit to the choristers' education, as they sing through the canon of German masterworks, and some grades currently studying medieval European history, specifically Charlemagne and the importance of Aachen, Germany, to the Holy Roman Empire.

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