TSU Chorale Wins Gold and Silver Prizes in the 2nd Tokyo International Choir Competition  

Date Posted: 08/15/2019

The Tarlac State University Chorale exhibited their vocal prowess once again as they win Gold Prize and Silver Prize in two categories of the 2nd Tokyo International Choir Competition held in Harumi, Tokyo, Japan on July 26-29, 2019.

Each group is only allowed to join two categories. The TSU Chorale, led by Choirmaster Joshua Ysmael Fontanilla, won the Gold Prize (3rd Place) with 85 points in the Folk Category and Silver Prize (5th Runner-up) with 80.65 points in the Youth Category.

From the regulations of the competition, groups whose scores are 85 points or higher will be awarded with the Gold Prize, while those with 75 points or higher are awarded with the Silver Prize, and those with points equal to 65 or higher will be awarded with the Bronze Prize. Other than these prizes, the first to third place are also announced for each category.

Being the smallest group, with only 20 members, among the 80 participating choirs from almost 25 countries in the competition, the TSU Chorale outshined its competitors. “At least kahit papano may nakuha kami,” Fontanilla said.  

Along with the TSU Chorale, Koro ng Unibersidad ng Pilipinas Manila from the University of the Philippines Manila won first place in the Contemporary Music Category and second place in the Mixed Chorus Section.

When asked for their fiercest opponent from the competition, “Filipino din… automatic kapag may Filipino kang kalaban mahihirapan ka,” Fontanilla answered adding, “kasi iba yung tunog ng Filipino eh…kumbaga [compared] sa European countries, Filipinos [are] very active kasi sa choir singing so very competitive.”

The group is accompanied by Dr. Glenard T. Madriaga, Vice President for Administration and Finance, and Dr. Leodivina P. Tagama, TSU Chorale Adviser.

They are currently training for the CAASUC-III Regional Culture and the Arts Festival 2019 and are also hoping to defend their title next year in the Taipei International Choral Competition in Taiwan.

The Tokyo International Choir Competition is one of the four Grand Prix competitions leading to the World Choral Championship. It is also in alliance with Taipei International Choral Competition forming the TICCs Network that encourages choirs from around the world to take the chance of visiting two of Asia’s most celebrated cities. [Jodie Andrea Pangilinan]


Photo courtesy of Joshua Ysmael Fontanilla