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Australian Youth Choir brings Aussie music to concert halls of Europe

2012-06-17

While in Rome they performed here at the city's cultural center of the Domus Australia. The group's organizer Julie Mckenna has been working with children in performing arts for the past 35 years. She says the youth tours have increased since the beginning of the organization.

Julie McKenna
Director, Australian Youth Choir
"We've been doing it for 24 years regularly, coming with the tour to different parts of Europe or America.”

The group's music instructor George Ellis says that the trip has allowed them to see the places where some of the world's best composers once performed.

George Ellis
Music Director, Australian Youth Choir
"We started in London and then went to Austria, so the birthplace of people, of composers, like Schubert, at least they worked there, Beethoven and Brahms. FLASH And finally we've arrived in Rome after performing in Florence. And it's been a wonderful trip and to cap it off in Rome is a dream come true.”

The children on the tour ranged between the ages of 10 and 18. They come from every corner of Australia to bring some of their native songs to Europe and take back home the sights and sounds of European antiquity.

"Today I saw the Colosseum and the Roman Forum which were really good because I've learned about it at school and I've been dying to look at it so I'm really happy about that.”

"We're going to be singing a bunch of our repertoire, which will be a few Australian songs and some of other songs.”

"I'm going to remember that everything has a bigger history than we're sometimes aware of coming from Australia. Our European settlement, only dates back a couple of hundred years where as everything here is very old, very steeped in history.”

For the Domus Australia, concerts like this one help to promote a cultural exchange not only for these children but also the city of Rome.

Gabriel Ignazio Griffa
Director, Domus Australia
"For us, this is a cultural center, and it's a great opportunity to offer the city of Rome and to all the tourists that are here something else also from Australia.”

Since it's opening in 2011, the Domus Australia has served not only those coming from 'down under' but people from every country. For the Australian Youth Choir, performing here helped to bring a bit of their home country to the Eternal City.


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