‘How can we get a million people to hear a Gaelic song live?’ – that was the question that culminated in Alba Choir performing on the Eurovision stage.
The Eurovision Choir competition saw 10 of Europe’s best choirs performing a live song to impress a panel of international choral music stars. Blending spectacular staging and vocals in front of a live stadium audience, Eurovision Choir was broadcast to millions across the globe, taking viewers on a journey of musical traditional and cultures from across Europe in search of the continent’s pre-eminent vocal group. Not since 1966 and Kenneth McKellar had Eurovision seen a kilt on stage, but the 2019 Eurovision Choir changed all that. Conductor Joy Dunlop was tasked with creating a choir from scratch; choosing Gaelic choristers from across Scotland to perform a specially arranged set of Gaelic music with both traditional and modern influences. Though Denmark would finally take the crown of Eurovision Choir 2019 winners, Scotland came home truly proud of their performance.
Since then, the Alba Choir have gone from strength to strength – from launching the 2020 World Choir Games in Glasgow, to wowing the crowds (in the pouring rain!) as part the 2019 Royal National Mòd’s Opening Ceremony. They also ensured that the cèilidh never faltered at BBC ALBA’s ‘Cèilidh na Bliadhna Ùire’, the popular televised Hogmanany Celebrations.
What is unique about Alba Choir is not only do they sing, but their choreography tells the stories of the songs performed; creating a visual spectacular on the choral stage. They’re a choir who truly love what they do and their passion for and deification to their native language and culture shines through everything that they do.