History

A History of the New Hampshire Friendship Chorus

The Friendship Chorus was the brain-child of Philip Wei, co-founder and long-time president of the Chorus. Originally created for a single tour to China in 1988, the Friendship Chorus continues to provide opportunities to share music, friendship, and culture with people from around the world. Since its inception in 1988, the Friendship Chorus has performed worldwide.

 

 

Past concert locations

  • China in 1988

  • New Zealand and Australia in 1990

  • Russia, Estonia and Latvia in 1992

  • Greece and Turkey in 1994

  • Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia in 1996

  • South Africa in 1998

  • Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary and Austria in 2000

  • Korea and Vietnam in 2002

  • Brazil in 2004

  • China in 2006

  • Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro in 2008

  • Morocco in 2010

  • Georgia and Armenia in 2012

  • Colombia in 2014

  • Cuba in 2016

  • Bulgaria in 2018

 

Each tour is self-supporting. In most concerts the Friendship Chorus shares the same stage with host choruses, often the sponsors as well. The Friendship Chorus performs gratis, while concert proceeds are used to defray venue expenses and support local charities.

 

Our members come from all walks of life, and though we come from all over New England, most of us come from the State of New Hampshire. The Friendship Chorus has always been dynamic in make-up, including both singer participants and leadership. The group re-forms for each tour. The chorus is non-auditioned and includes a broad range of abilities and ages. Singers are asked to indicate their performance experience on their applications. A reasonably mandatory rehearsal policy is maintained.

 

Tour repertoire often includes a few pieces to be performed with host choirs in the indigenous languages, but otherwise generally reflects American choral practices. Rehearsals usually begin with a fall week retreat in the odd year; then resume in the spring of the tour year. There are about nine rehearsals altogether. Singers are issued scores and practice CDs at the fall retreat.

 

It has been said that NHFC boldly goes where few state choruses have gone before. Destinations are chosen considering the timeliness of local reception and the pragmatism of travel arrangements.

Comments on 2010 Tour of Morocco

The 2010 Tour of Morocco included 79 singers and guests and took place in May and June, spring in northern Africa. Morocco lies at the crossroads of Africa, Europe, and the Middle East. It is a magical country, yet very real; it has a unique heritage shaped by the influence of Berbers, ancient Jews, Muslims, Andalusians, Bedouin Arabs, sub-Saharans, and colonial Europeans. Life each day in that part of the world is a rich mixture of surprises and diversity. This amazing land of contrasts has ancient ruins and sacred mosques, endless deserts and striking mountains, imposing casbahs and spirited souks. The tour took the singers from Casablanca to the imperial cities of Rabat, Fez, Marrakech, to other medieval and modern towns and cities, and to the High Atlas and the vast Sahara. Participants saw wondrous sights and hospitable people in an age-old culture.

New Hampshire Friendship Chorus, PO Box 2257, Campton, NH 03223