The origins of the Halle City Boys’ Choir are associated with the founding of the Neuwerk Monastery and go back to the early twelfth century. The Neuwerk Monastery was the first in Halle to be given the right to found a school. The school children provided the music for religious services at the monastery. This is documented in records dating from 1116. The choir performed the task for centuries albeit, from 1565 on, based at the Lutheran Grammar School, where the name "Stadtsingechor" originated. Following the dissolution of the Lutheran Grammar School, the choir was affiliated with the Francke Foundations in 1808. From 1946 on, the City of Halle took over responsibility for the choir. A member of the German Association of Concert Choirs (Verband Deutscher Konzertchöre), it currently works with 75 active members and 53 young aspirants, most of whom attend the schools in the Foundations.
Fostering Central Germany’s Musical Traditions
The choir’s work is centred mainly on sacred choral music, whereby the prominent music tradition of Central Germany including Scheidt, Handel, Schütz and J. S. Bach receives special attention. Essential to the choir’s work are: regular performances of motets in Halle’s Marktkirche and the Merseburg Cathedral, cooperation with Halle’s symphony orchestra (Staatskapelle Halle) and participation in the Francke Foundations’ cultural activities.
Proof of the choir’s artistic quality is its long involvement with the International Handel Festival in Halle. From the 1990s on, it successfully repeated guest performances abroad. Tours have included Belgium, Spain, Switzerland, Great Britain, Denmark, Estonia, Russia, the United States and China.