TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Puzangalan Children's Choir (屏東希望兒童合唱團) from Taiwan has delivered its best ever performance at the 11th International Johannes Brahms Choir Festival and Competition held in Wernigerode, Germany, July 3 to 7.
An indigenous choir comprised of members of the Paiwan tribe in Pingtung County, the Puzangalan Children's Choir clinched golds in the categories of folklore, children’s choir, and sacred choral music a cappella, according to event organizer Interkultur.
The ensemble of singers would not have been able to participate in the contest had it not been for the help of Union Bank of Taiwan, which organized a fundraiser to cover the cost of the trip, said the choir's manager, Tsai Yi-fang (蔡義方).
He added that the choir's repertoire would always include folk ballads of Paiwan origin and songs related to Taiwanese culture so as to introduce the island to the world. While many youngsters their age spend their time playing, the singers sacrifice their leisure time to achieve perfection, Liberty Times quoted Tsai as saying.
"Puzangalan" means "hope" in the Paiwan language. Tsai reckoned that the chorus training has proven successful in shaping the children's character as well as providing a source of confidence to those coming from disadvantaged families.