To celebrate Fête de la Musique 2019 (World/ International Music Day-2019), H E Marie-Annick Bourdin, Ambassador of France to Bangladesh, hosted a concert performed by the Asian University for Women (AUW) Choir on 21st June, at the premises of the Embassies of France and Germany, Baridhara Diplomatic Enclave, Dhaka.
Marie-Annick Bourdin welcomed all and invited the members of the choir to perform on the day. The music conductor and flautist, Dr Selvam Thorez, also the Director, Alliance Française de Chittagong (AFC), and Dr Dave Dowland, Registrar and Chief Operating Officer, Asian University for Women, spoke prior to the performance.
The AUW Choir presented the performance under the theme Mignonne allons voir si la rose (Sweetheart, let’s see if the Rose), a project carried by the Alliance Française de Chittagong, and with the support from the Embassy of France in Bangladesh.
The choir mellifluously performed an array of musical scores ranging from Cantus Gregorian Classics, including Hodie Christus natus est and Salve Regina, to anonymous French pieces Automne, La jeune fillette, and Le Tourdion. The singers’ soothing synchronization of melody, humming, and both solo and choral pieces were fantastic. The guests thoroughly enjoyed their performances of Alessandro Constanini, Confitemini Domino, Trinity Roll and Selden Manuscript, Agincourt Carol, Piae Cantiones, Gaudete Christus est natus and more.
Training young singers from the choir of the AUW is a project that aims to empower women through music. Since March 2017, the AFC has been involved in a major project for women’s education through performances in the choir of the Asian University for Women, so that they can approach their social and professional future with better confidence.
Holding true symbol of diversity and harmony in their hearts, 70 young singers, members of the AUW choir, are aged 19 to 25, come from about fifteen countries, including South Asia, South East Asia and Middle East: Bangladesh, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, China, Nepal, Bhutan, India, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Cambodia.
Between September 2018 and April 2019, Alliance Française invited different professional musicians, as well as members of the French ensemble Son Ar Mein, for courses, a training residency, and a tour of concerts with young singers.
“Music connoisseurs, our colleagues and visitors are quite happy with today’s performance. I am hence looking forward to the next edition of the project,” said the ambassador H E Marie-Annick Bourdin, followed by the performance by the choir.