Wales is runner-up in Eurovision choir of the year

Wales is runner-up in Eurovision choir of the year


norman lebrecht

July 23, 2017

The first Eurovision Choir of the Year contest ended last night with a victory for Carmen Manet from Slovenia (pop. 2m).

Second was Côr Merched Sir Gâr from a slightly larger nation, Wales (pop. 3m)

Third place went to Latvia’s Spīgo, cheered on by the host nation (pop. 1.96m).

John Rutter and Elīna Garanča were among the judges.

Did anyone watch?

And why does choral singing seem to thrive only in tiny nations?

Full list of finalists (alphabetically by nation):

  • Hardchor Linz (Austria)
  • Les Pastoreaux (Belgium)
  • Academic Choir of Aarhus (Denmark)
  • Estonian TV Girls’ Choir (Estonia)
  • Jazzchor Freiburg (Germany)
  • Spīgo (Latvia)
  • Carmen Manet (Slovenia)
  • Bela Bartok Male Choir (Hungary)
  • Côr Merched Sir Gâr (Wales)


  • Elizabeth Owen says:

    Yes we watched and there was a high standard.
    Good for Wales and llongyfarchiadau!

  • Peter Phillips says:

    The choir’s name can be translated as Carmarthenshire Women’s Choir. Llongyfarchiadau indeed! Da iawn.

  • E Ford says:

    As ex pats in England, we watched on S4C. Wish Wales would get cultural recognition in the rest of the U.K. Come on Wales!

  • Anon says:

    Germany’s choir was arguably among the very best there, so no, choir singing does not only thrive in tiny nations. But it seems to thrive mostly in nations not yet completely culturally downgraded to the level of globally spreading American “culture”.

    • Elizabeth Owen says:

      At the Llangollen International Eisteddfod at the beginning of July an American choir won two first prizes in various competitions. Choirs are universal not just in small countries.

  • Michael McGlynn says:

    I think that small nations usually have a greater sense of their own cultural heritage. Pretty simple really.

    • Michael McGlynn says:

      And I would also say that my own culture has minimal interest in creating an indigenous form of choral music as I have found out over the last three decades. But I really understand why so many smaller countries hang on passionately to that which has formed them.

  • Father Ted says:

    I remember when we did “My lovely horse” for Ireland.

    • Michael McGlynn says:

      Do you? I don’t. Its not a choral piece unless you are dealing in accompanied two part writing with amplification sung by an ensemble. This clearly isn’t that. So if it wasn’t actually in the competition then this is a joke – thanks – its hysterical.