Festival of Songs Olomouc
International Choir Festival of Songs Olomouc was established in 1972 under the name Festival of Children’s Choirs Olomouc. Since its beginning, the festival has been annually held by a traditional regional project. The name Festival of Songs came to be in 1977; at first it used to be strictly a platform for get-togethers of children’s choirs through shows and concerts. In 1987, the international singing competition Iuventus Mundi Cantant saw the light of day; later, in 2002, it was restructured and renamed as international singing choir competition Mundi Cantant. Since 1987, the competition has been opened for all categories of choirs.
The festival is organized by the Festa Musicale z.s. association, which is continuing the work of Festival of Songs association (until 1998); this was also a continuation of organization activities of City Cultural Comitee (until 1989). The festival was established by a choirmaster and music events’ organizer Karel Klimeš together with his son Jiří Klimeš, who has continued in developing the festival even further. Currently, Marek Klimeš is the director of both Festa Musicale and the festival.
The festival aims to support the development of choir singing and amateur music in general. Its mission is to popularize choir singing and to draw attention of the public to this branch of music and culture as such. Its goal is to support the development of choirs not only through the festival itself (especially through the Mundi Cantant competition), but also through the year-round activity of the organizers, who are trying to encourage the creative activity of choirs.
In the last five years, Festival of Songs Olomouc was attended by 159 choirs, making in total 5918 participants from 21 countries. The festival was attended by choirs from countries such as Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Costa Rica, Croatia, Hungary, Ireland, Iceland, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Malaysia, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine and the Czech Republic.