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World Symposium on Choral Music
World Symposium on Choral Music

The International Federation for Choral Music sponsors this project in cooperation with a national organization, institution, or properly constituted committee in a host country. Whether world or regional, it is a meeting of the world’s most prestigious choral conductors and choirs.

Events of global proportion

The World Symposium on Choral Music is a one-week event organized every three years, with Regional symposia organized in alternate years. They occur in a prominent and attractive city that has the facilities, financial support and managerial structure to successfully plan and administer a major international or regional event. A local organizing committee works in collaboration with the Executive Committee of IFCM.
World and Regional Symposia promote artistic excellence, cooperation and exchange, by bringing together the finest choirs and choral leaders for performances, seminars, workshops, exhibitions, and choral reading sessions.

An event important to the Choral Art

The impact of the World and Regional Symposia on participating singers and conductors is significant. Past experience has shown that choir singers are immeasurably enriched through the sharing of music indigenous to their own country and by learning about music from other areas of the world. Conductors who attend, share a similar experience in that they have the opportunity to improve their skills by working with some of the most renowned conductor/teachers. This has an influence on what happens in making music with their own choirs in their respective countries. In addition, hearing repertoire sung by some of the finest choirs from throughout the world, conductors at Symposia are challenged to strive for higher levels of artistry.

An event that makes an important contribution to the organizing city, region or country 

The cultural, political, and economic impact of the World, and Regional Symposia on the host city can be substantial. Conservatively speaking, the city becomes a world or regional cultural focal point not unlike that of a sports event such as the Olympics and Pan American Games. Wide media coverage is virtually assured given the nature of the event. The potential economic impact is considerable since the event takes place during high tourist season.


The International Federation for Choral Music has held 11 symposia in 14 world-class cities over the past 25 years.


World Symposium on Choral Music 2023/24 Doha, Qatar
December 30 - January 5

Changing Horizons” 

“Changing Horizons” speaks both to this specific IFCM flagship event and the global choral community on many levels. It suggests a new and broader understanding of choral music that includes styles, regions, and traditions of ensemble singing which have been previously excluded from the conventional definition of choral music. There is enormous creative wealth in these parallel artistic expressions and experiences that can enrich the evolution of collective singing. To change the horizon is to take our art form and extend its boundaries. The horizon limits our vision, but horizons need not be stagnant; there will always be more to discover beyond every horizon.
“Changing Horizons” also speaks to a world dramatically and unexpectedly altered. Covid-19 has impacted choral singing in a way that could never have been anticipated. The pandemic has brought great hardship but also incredible innovation and growth.
Finally, “Changing Horizons” speaks to the literal horizon of desert and ocean that is so defining to the experience of life in Qatar. Wind sculpting the sand and the sea creates a physical world whose boundaries are forever shifting and adapting. The edges of the horizon are ephemeral, fleeting, and beautiful, like the experience of music itself.
WSCM2023 will bring together the very best the choral world offers with outstanding and relevant choirs, singers, speakers, presenters, conductors, composers, and more. In this new era of changing horizons, there is an opportunity for all of us to share and to learn.
World Symposium on Choral Music (WSCM) will be under the patronage of the State of Qatar’s Ministry of Culture and Sports.
While the World Symposium on Choral Music (WSCM) 2023 is organized and produced by the Qatar National Choral Association (QNCA), there are specific roles and responsibilities for two joint committees: Artistic and Administrative with equal representation from IFCM and QNCA.
The Artistic Committee is responsible for all decisions regarding the artistic program of the Symposium, i.e., develop the main theme of the Symposium, select the choirs and lecturers, construct the concert schedule, develop the fringe program, plan the exhibition, and envision special concerts and activities in the frame of the Symposium. Committee members include:
  • Co-chaired by Jan Schumacher (Germany) and Giovanni Pasini (QNCA, Qatar), 
  • Cristian Grases (IFCM representative, USA), 
  • Nasser Sahim Nasseb (QNCA, Qatar), 
  • Beverly Shangkuan-Cheng (IFCM representative, Philippines), 
  • Alena Pyne (QNCA, Qatar), and 
  • Dana Alfardan (Honorary Member, Qatar).
The Administrative Committee is responsible for all decisions regarding the production of the Symposium, i.e., all administrative and financial areas. This task includes oversight for symposium components such as budget, schedule, marketing, registration/ticketing, human resources, technical support, and hospitality. Committee members include:
  • Co-chaired by Ki Adams (Canada) and Jennifer Taynen (QNCA, Qatar)
  • Gábor Móczár (Hungary),
  • Aljazi Al Henzab (QNCA, Qatar), 
  • Yoshihiro Egawa (Japan),
  • Anwar Al Nimri (QNCA, Qatar), and
  • Khalid Salim (Honourary Member, Qatar).


ICB Bulletin

Official magazine of the International Federation for Choral Music, the International Choral Bulletin is published quarterly in the four official languages of IFCM: English, French, German and Spanish. It is distributed in more than 80 countries on the five continents and is the official voice of choral music around the world.

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Global Choral Calendar

Our focus at the moment is to unite the choral calendars of international choral organisations. Meanwhile please consult the calendar of choral events published by the European Choral Association - Europa Cantat here.

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