The UGM Student Choir (PSM UGM) recently embarked on a triumphant journey, competing in two prestigious international choral festivals: the 3rd International Bandung Choral Festival (IBCF) and the Karangturi International Choir Competition (KICC).
Their dedication and talent paid off as they returned home with a dazzling array of awards, including gold medals and recognition for their outstanding musicianship.
At the IBCF held on November 6–11, 2023, the team swept the Mixed Choir and Musica Sacra categories, clinching the coveted 2nd Place Gold Medal in both. Their conductor, Lukas Gunawan Arga Rakasiwi, was also awarded the Outstanding Conductor distinction.
To top it all off, the choir was chosen as a Grand Prix Finalist, solidifying their position as one of the most exceptional ensembles at the festival.
Following their success at IBCF, the choir traveled to Semarang to participate in the KICC. Once again, they proved their vocal prowess, capturing the 3rd Place Gold Medal in the Mixed category.
“The joys and sorrows and, of course, the sense of pride motivated us to give our all. The results are a testament to our hard work and training, the team’s positive energy, and the invaluable guidance of our coach and fellow singers,” explained Chair of PSM UGM, Silvestra Wima.
PSM UGM sent 43 delegates in both competitions, consisting of 42 active students from multiple faculties as singers and one conductor.
Leading up to the competitions, they embarked on a rigorous training program, practicing three times a week and then increasing the frequency to daily sessions as the competition date approached.
They organized a pre-competition concert two weeks before their departure to ensure stage readiness and refine their performance.
Additionally, a choir clinic was held with Ardelia Padma Sawitri, a renowned vocal coach, experienced classical singer, and Koninklijk Conservatorium graduate, to enhance individual skills and song interpretation further.
“Becoming the first choir from Indonesia to perform ‘Leonardo Dreams of His Flying Machine’ by Eric Whitacre at an international competition is a great pride, especially with the positive appreciation we received,” Wima continued.
Wima hoped these experiences would equip PSM UGM members with valuable insights and encourage their continued growth and development.
With ongoing support from the university and the community, Wima believes that PSM UGM is destined for even more outstanding achievements in the future.
“We are incredibly grateful for the support and prayers we received from the Rector of UGM, Dr. R.A. Antari Innaka T., Dr. Dina Widyaputri Kariodimedjo, Coach Lukas Gunawan Arga Rakasiwi, and everyone who played a role in our journey,” Wima said.
Photo: UGM Student Choir (PSM UGM)