They came back with gold … two of them as matter of fact …plus two silvers and the experience of a lifetime.
The Mosaic Singers, part of the Mosaic Youth Theatre, spent to last two week in Latvia competing in the World Choir Games with a side trip to Lithuania to meet the ambassador and sing in phenomenal places such as the St. Kazimieras Church in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, and the Concert Hall at the Marijampole House of Culture in the town of Marijampole. Both were standing-room only. The concert at St. Kazimieras was broadcast live on the internet. At Marijampole the audience stood and applauded non-stop for several minutes at the end until the young artists did not one, but two encores.
“We got the response from many that “Mariajampole has never seen anything like this before,” says the Mosaic Facebook page.
As invited guests of the US Ambassador to Lithuania, Deborah A. McCarthy, they toured the US Embassy and put on a short concert.
The Singers even performed the Lithuanian national anthem … in Lithuanian … perfectly on Good Morning Lithuania.
Here’s a video of them singing the anthem.
Twenty-six young Mosaic singers, ages 14-18, made the trip and sang their hearts out every day … including impromptu concerts in the airport and other places.
They first won two silver medals but were not content. They wanted gold and vowed to get it. When the announcement came that they won the gold chants of USA, USA, USA could be heard drowning out the applause. Remind you of the Olympics? It should this competition is often referred to as the Olympics for Choirs.
Here’s a video from their Facebook page that shows them winning a Gold in the Gospel category.
“We are so proud of how the Mosaic young artists represented Detroit and USA at the World Choir Games,” said Rick Sperling, CEO of the Mosaic Youth Theatre. “These accomplishments are the result of our emphasis on setting high expectations for Detroit youth and giving them the support and training needed to reach them. What these young people accomplished was not just a result of talent, but of incredible hard work, determination, resiliency and professionalism — qualities that will continue to serve them in whatever path they choose to pursue in life.”
Competing in the World Choir Games is a big deal. Singers came from five continents and 73 countries. There were 460 choirs and there 27,000 participants competing in 29 categories. The Mosaic Singers competed against the best choirs of all ages from all around the world.
Here’s a rundown of the medals won by the Mosaic Singers:
- Gold in the Pop category
- Gold in Gospel … Mosaic ranked 4th in the world overall in choral gospel
- Silver in Spiritual
- Silver in the Mixed Youth Choir Open Competition
During the Mosaic’s World Choir Games Qualification Concerts in Pop they quickly had the European audience clapping (unsolicited) and hooting and hollering. These are not the easiest performances because there is no audience, just three judges staring at you and taking notes. These young artists came through like pros.
The Mosaic Singers also joined all the thousands of other singers at a major concert in the “Mežaparks,” a neighborhood in North Central Riga, Latvia, and other “friendship concerts” in Latvia.
The Mosaic Singers are no strangers to travel. They have performed in more than 25 states, at The White House and The Kennedy Center. Internationally, they have represented the United States at the World Festival of Children’s Theatre in Copenhagen, Denmark, performed at The Millennium Dome in London England, and participated in cultural exchanges with Dakar, Senegal and Singapore.
This trip was sponsored by Strategic Staffing Solutions.
“We have to thank Cindy Pasky, Paul Huxley and everyone at Strategic Staffing Solutions for their incredible generosity in making this once-of-lifetime opportunity possible for the young artists of Mosaic,” Sperling. “In addition to the World Choir Games in Latvia, it was an incredible experience having Strategic Staffing Solutions bring Mosaic to Lithuania as cultural ambassadors for the U.S. and Detroit.”
Several executives traveled with the Singers and S³ CEO Cindy Pasky traveled to Lithuania to attend concerts in Marijampole and Vilnius.
“The Mosaic Singers were awesome,” said Pasky “They showed the world what tremendous talent we have in the USA and Detroit. S³ was proud to sponsor them.”
Since the Games were created in 2000 the worldwide operating organization INTERKULTUR from Pohlheim has been in charge of the program. The event takes place every two years in alternating cities. It was last held in Cincinnati, Ohio, in 2012. Previous hosts included Austria, South Korea, Germany and China.