The Philippine choir “University of the Philippines Singing Ambassadors” have been proclaimed the runaway winners of the 64th International Contest of Habaneras and Polyphony of Torrevieja having won the main awards in both of the competition categories.
They were awarded the first prize of 12,000 euros in the Juan Aparicio habaneras category and the choir directed by Edgardo Lumbera, picked up a further 10,000 euros in the César Cánovas classification where they were judged on the harmonic aspects of a musical composition.
And it didn’t stop there as they were also judged to be the ‘stand out’ choir by the audience, winning a further 2,000 euro following a ballot conducted on the final night.
On Saturday evening at the historic site of the Eras de la Sal the winning choir hosted the finale to the event that is considered one of the most important of its kind in the world, the Grand Coral Gala where it was announced that the Belarusian women’s choir “The Girl’s Choir of Raniza” was placed second in the habaneras category, Francisco Vallejos, where they received a cheque for 5,000 euros.
They also finished as runners up in the polyphony award ‘César Cánovas’ receiving a further 4,000 euros for their troubles. Victor Maslennijov, was also awarded first place as the best musical director.
Bronze prize, and a cheque for 2,500 euros, was won by the Choir of the University of Bucaramanga, Colombia. They also came third in the polyphony section winning a further 2,000 euros.
The National prize, worth 2,000 euros, was awarded for purely Spanish choirs, and won by the vocal group “Amitié” from Asturias while the award for the best composition “Sal de mi vida”, was won by the Venezuelan composer Víctor Daniel Lozada Lima, who received 3,000 euros.
During four evenings of the concert, twelve choirs from 11 countries – Spain, Ukraine, China, Serbia, Romania, Belarus, Mexico, Colombia, Indonesia, Macedonia and the Philippines, took part in the contest after being selected from more than one hundred entries received by the Municipal Board of Habaneras and Polyphony of Torrevieja.
The contest began in 1955 and has now become one of the oldest and most recognised choral contests in the world also being nominated as an event of International Tourist Interest.