What’s old is NEW! (4)
Archived Articles 29 Feb 2008  EWR
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The rebirth of the Hamilton Estonian Mixed Choir

One thing that has held the Estonian community together is music. Estonians take pride in the fact that the arts are an integral part of the makeup of an individual, and in fact, the community at large.
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What has been terrific to see is the re-birth of the traditional 50-year-old Hamilton Estonian Mixed Choir, which made its official public “re-debut” at the Independence Day Festivities in Hamilton this past Saturday to a capacity crowd. Under the direction of Norman-Illis Reintamm, this choir is made up of singers not only from Hamilton, Dundas, and Burlington, but also from as far away as Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Guelph, Oakville, and Mississauga.

At about 30 strong, this choir is a venue for musical development and it provides a strong social focus for the younger Estonians in this region of Canada. In fact it is great to see so many gather at the local pub after the rehearsals!

At its performance on Saturday afternoon, so many attendees commented on the ladies being wonderfully dressed in their folk costumes and the gentlemen of the choir in their tuxedos. It all looked so elegant. The following comments were among those heard: “The songs have put me in such a good mood I feel like joining again myself. Too bad I'm now old;” "It is such a pleasure to see all those young singers;” "Where did all these singers come from all of a sudden!?"

With the support of the National Estonian Foundation, the Hamilton Estonian Mixed Choir has indeed enjoyed a rebirth, with an aim of doing some local performances, but mainly to prepare for the Estonian Song Festival in Estonia in 2009. Let’s hope that more and more people will discover this wonderful opportunity for singing and socializing and come out to rehearsals on Wednesday evenings! Vivat musica!
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