For more than 500 years, the world-famous Vienna Boys Choir–founded in 1498 by Emperor Maximilian I–has delighted and thrilled listeners of all ages. This Friday, November 22, at Galveston’s Grand 1894 Opera House, the voices of the Vienna Boys Choir–Christmas in Vienna will take to the stage for one performance only at 8 p.m.
Over the centuries, the Viennese Court attracted such famous musicians as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Joseph Haydn, Michael Haydn, and Franz Schubert–all were choir boys. Until 1918, the boys sang exclusively for the imperial court. In 1924, the Choir was re-established as a private organization. Today, there are 100 choristers between the ages of 9 and 14 who are divided into four touring groups. Each group spends 10 weeks on tour every year. Altogether, the four groups give up to 300 concerts annually, attended by almost 500,000 spectators around the world. Their program will include holiday classics, favorite Strauss waltzes, classical masterpieces by Mozart and Haydn, world-renowned folk song, and so much more.
Conducting the Vienna Boys Choir
Manuel Huber—is an Italian with extensive experience as voice coach, choir director, and music educator in a variety of positions throughout Europe—is the most recent addition to the ranks of Choirmaster of the Vienna Boys Choir. Prior to his appointment with the Vienna Boys Choir, he was musical director of the Youth Project at the Gut Immling Opera Festival, a voice coach with the highly regarded Tölzer Knabenchor, and guest conductor of Kammerphilharmonie Budweis, Bad Reichenhaller Philharmonie, and Salzburg’s Mozarteum University Symphony Orchestra.
Born in Brixen, South Tyrol, Huber began to play the piano at the age of 6, and was for years a member and later chairman of the Vinzentiner Knabenchor. At 15, he began to conduct, leading the children's choir, the women's chorus, and the church choir of his native Weitental. He continued his piano studies at the Claudio Monteverdi Conservatory in Brixen, and went on to study choral conducting, music pedagogy, and orchestral conducting at the Salzburg Mozarteum as well. To this he added a major in psychology at Salzburg University, from which he graduated with distinction in 2018.
Asked about his experiences with the Vienna Boys Choir, Huber says, "I love the work we do together, and especially how much the boys enjoy their music. My goal is to teach them the tools of the trade, to understand and feel music as best we can, and at the same time see them grow up and come into their own."
This project is sponsored in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts and Texas Commission on the Arts. This performance is also sponsored in part by The Tremont House, The Trube Foundation, and the Galveston Musical Club.
Tickets may be purchased at The Grand’s Box Office at 2020 Postoffice Street, by calling 409-765-1894 , 800-821-1894, or online at www.thegrand.com