The Georgia State University Singers weren’t looking for too much.
Before to 40-person choir undertook an 11-day tour across Germany and Austria this summer, organizers pointed out to potential donors how much prestige would come to the university’s arts programs just by participating in the tour’s capstone event, the Marktoberdorf International Chamber Choir Competition.
But their modesty proved to be misplaced, as the GSU singers bested 11 other choirs from around the world to win the biennial event in the small Bavarian city in southern Germany. Invited mixed choirs this year hailed from around Europe, from Lithuania to Latvia and beyond, as well as further-flung locales like Singapore, Indonesia and Argentina.
Deanna Joseph, an associate professor at the GSU School of Music, conducted the choir, which rehearsed for months to perform Dominick Argento’s “Walden Pond”; Poulenc’s “Salve Regina”; and Dan Forrest’s “Good Night, Dear Heart,” among other selections.
“Taking first place is a huge honor of excellence for the singers and GSU’s music program,” said Dr. Joseph in a news release. “What’s even more amazing is that we received the highest possible rating on an international level.”
The win came just after some of the GSU singers were featured in the TV show, “The Walking Dead, which is filmed in Georgia. GSU garnered coverage in two German newspapers as a result of the choir’s strong showing there.