The Vox Aurea choir from Jyväskylä, Finland, consists of 55 singers aged 11 to 18. The singers are selected to the choir through auditions. Many of the choir members are pupils of extended music curricular classes at school. Established 50 years ago, Vox Aurea has sustained its high level as one of the top choirs in Finland. The choir has been awarded prizes in various national and international choir competitions and festivals and it has made several recordings. The choir is known for its bright sound and lively performances. Vox Aurea choir is conducted by Sanna Salminen who took the lead in 2009. The voice trainer of the choir is Meritta Pyykkönen.
The repertoire of Vox Aurea consists mostly of traditional and modern choral art music and traditional music of different cultures. The choir has also specialized in performing compositions of its previous conductor, Pekka Kostiainen. Experimental attitude towards a holistic expression, as well as a warm team spirit, are core parts of the choir’s identity.
Co-operation with high-level youth choirs from different countries forms an essential part of the activity of Vox Aurea. Sharing music and experiences with friends from all over the world creates understanding, bonding and trust that empower children and adolescents in building the future. The spring of 2019, for instance, took Vox Aurea to a concert tour into three European countries, whereafter the choir hosted guest choirs from Jaroslavl (Russia) and San Fransisco (USA).
Photo: Don Fogg
SANNA SALMINEN, CONDUCTOR
The conductor of the Vox Aurea choir, Sanna Salminen, is an acknowledged music educator in her home country. She works as a university teacher in Music Pedagogy under the Department of Education at the University of Jyväskylä. She graduated with a Licentiate degree from the University of Jyväskylä in 2004. Her main subject was Music Education and during her studies, she specialized in conducting and multicultural music. She has led and performed in various instrumental and vocal groups, for example medieval and renaissance music, folk music of different cultures, classical music and pop music. Salminen has also worked as the voice trainer and assistant conductor of Musica Chamber Choir (1998-2005). She also established Ruamjai choir which she conducted from 2000 to 2009. Sanna Salminen has worked as a researcher and a teacher in developmental co-operation projects in South Africa and she is also known for making school music books, arrangements and compositions.
HIGHLIGHTS IN THE 2010s
2012 Concert tour in South Africa
2013 Venezia in Musica, 3rd prize in folk music category and youth choir category
2015 Golden Gate choir competition, San Francisco, 1st prize in historical and folk music categories (youth choir), 2nd prize in contemporary music category, 3rd prize in gospel & spiritual music category, prize for a noteworthy contemporary piece
2016 Concert tour in Graz, Austria
2016-17 Youth choir of the year for the EBU radio broadcasting company in Finland, Taking part in the EBU Christmas concert day
2017 Songbridge together with Young People´s Chorus of New York City & Indonesian Cordana choir
2018 One of the invited choirs at the international EJCF youth choir festival in Basel, Switzerland
2019 The premiere of Crossings, an interdisciplinary four-movement choral work, together with Piedmont East Bay Children's Choir